In the CVS case, one of the ethical dilemmas that stood out to me the most and was the most challenging to my values and the company’s values was the HIPAA privacy case of 2009. At that time, CVS was not adhering to and thus violating the HIPAA Privacy Rule, therefore breaking the law. As a company in the health industry, CVS is required to properly safeguard the information of their patients, but CVS failed to do so. Employees at CVS would simply through away old prescription notes and bottle labels that had sensitive patient information on them, therefore they did no dispose of patient information correctly by destroying it. After the company was investigated by the OCR and the FTC, the root of this problem was discovered. Employees lacked the proper training in disposing patient information and were not punished when information was disposed of wrongly. CVS was not following three of their five values in this situation; integrity, caring, and accountability. Customers were told and trusted that their privacy was of top priority and therefore they assumed their information was being handled properly, but this was a lie and therefore tarnished CVS’ integrity. Lying is against one of my values, but society also sees it as extremely wrong so this case especially caught my eye. The fact that patient information was not disposed of properly also put the patients at risk of the public having access to sensitive health conditions. This could potentially harm the patient in many
In Radley Balko’s essay “What You Eat Is Your Business,” Balko argues that what we put into our bodies is our business, not the government’s, and that personal responsibility should be primary in our nutrition choices. I agree wholeheartedly. However, while I do agree that personal responsibility is paramount, in the new age of the Affordable Care Act (which had not been implemented prior to Balko’s writing), it is becoming hard to say that the government should stay out of my business, when healthcare is now, by law, the government’s business. Critics of personal choice argue, like David Zinczenko does in his essay “Don’t Blame the Eater,”. These two authors both help me understand each other that the government must regulate the fast food industry similar to how they regulate the tobacco companies. How absurd it is that the government needs to regulate my waistline?
However, it may have been easier to contend with when you take into the fact that CVS health care venture’s profit is tens of million dollars a year. CVS corporations felt its decision to stop marketing tobacco products made sense and was the right thing to do. The sale of tobacco conflicted with their value proposition, (promise of value to be delivered and acknowledgment on behalf of the customer, reciprocating that value was delivered and experienced) of saving lives and providing people with health care. Additionally, tobacco sales reflected the opposite effect of what was considered to be healthy. Their decision not only gave the company a good reputation, but also contributed to CVS listing as a preferred
2. The CEOs took action by implementing the health and smoking programs. Although there we many alternatives, their action was focused on the individual’s choice: to participate or not. The decision then became that of the employee and not the “for the group.”
Health in the United States has become a serious issue. With about six in every 10 people suffering from either being overweight or obese in addition to other unhealthy behaviors such as smoking, heavy drinking or lack of exercise. These lifestyle choices have caused a number of chronic illnesses to skyrocket to high rates. “These chronic conditions have become a major burden, as they lead to decreased quality of life, premature death and disability, and increased health care cost” (pg xiii). What the workplace is trying to do is promote a healthier lifestyle for the employee. Some reasons for doing so is that the employer cares about the well being of their employee so that they can be more productive and to help reduce the risk of getting a chronic disease. Since these chronic diseases are becoming more life threatening and the cost of health care is increasing the employers are implementing health promotion and disease prevention strategies also known as workplace wellness programs. “Workplace wellness takes advantages of employers’ access to employees at an age when interventions can still change their long-term health trajectory. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act supports this trend with several provisions regarding health promotion and also mandated this study” (pg xiii).
The United States may not have a great correlation with health insurance but it seems some companies want to change that notion. Good health insurance may be difficult to come by when one’s health may not be the best. In an article by Anna Wilde Mathews, she states that the company AmeriGas has mandated that each employee get a routine checkup each year if they wish to keep their health insurance through the company. She also goes on about how this program, Operation Save-A-Life, has helped their employees' health even though that mandating physicals might be very controlling for a company to do to its employees. I agree with the author that companies like AmeriGas should have the right to mandate medical checkups in order for employees to
This will allow for increased spending in other areas of our company, creating a more productive budget. In addition, participation in the Wellness Program will provide employees that are able to work more often and more efficiently. This will undoubtedly increase productivity and decrease turnover. With 39,000 employees in the United States and 30 foreign nations, it is imperative that we maintain healthy and productive employees. Because of these significant benefits, it is crucial that we maintain and improve participation in the program. However, there are several concerns that may hinder such participation: 1. Despite Whirlpool’s guarantee of confidentiality, many employees do not trust the company with such private information. a. Employees have expressed their fear in the use of the information. They are concerned that their health status may negatively affect their position in the company. b. Although it is assured that no records are kept, employees fear the leak of private health information to their peers. If information was leaked, they fear the effects on their reputation and social standing within the company. 2. In order for the new addition to our program to be successful, it is important that we stress the benefits to our current employees. a. If our employees do not
The Affordable Care Act made changes to current health plans to show additional support for wellness programs. These changes continue to enable employers to add incentives for healthy living by reimbursing employees for gym memberships or giving a reward to those who complete a health assessment showing the employee is currently in good health. The changes ensure that wellness programs are simple to understand and reasonable accommodations must be made so that all workers can be included in the programs. A final change made increased the reward amount to 30% of health coverage cost, and the reward for programs that reduce smoking habits was increased to 50%. (United States Department of Labor, 2014).
Snacks and sodas have been removed from vending machines and have been banned on school campuses because of the state legislature and school boards. A “fat tax” has been suggested for high calorie foods. Another possibility being considered is that restaurants will have to send in every item on their menu to a laboratory so that it can be tested for its nutritional value and then labeled on that restaurant’s menu. This takes away a person's personal responsibility for their own body and well-being and makes it the government’s responsibility. Balko states “your well-being, shape, and condition have increasingly been deemed matters of ‘public health’, instead of matters of personal responsibility.” It is becoming more and more common for states to prevent private health care providers from charging obese clients at higher rates which removes any financial reasoning behind being
An employee can help reduce the cost of health cost by doing several things. There has been an outcry from organizations due to the rising number of competitors with high expenses catering for health benefits during employment periods and on retiring. The employee can be of great help by being participative in the programs set by their employers to benefit more from other advantages far from health costs (Kerzner, 2013). Some of the choices an employee may consider to help control health costs are by boosting consumerism, use technology to manage benefits, and indulge in fitness and health programs.
Conflict between an individual’s freedom to choose, and a governments obligation to protect its citizens has long been a source of contention and is often at the center of health policy debates. We have seen this very thing happen many times regarding obesity. Overweight and obesity result from daily lifestyle choices, the consequences of which gradually accumulate. Poor diets and inadequate physical activity are widely acknowledged as the main drivers of the obesity epidemic (Fung, Kuhle, Lu, Purcell, Schwartz, Storey, & Veugelers, 2012). Rates of obesity have skyrocketed in the past couple decades for adults, adolescents and children. Two out of every three adults in America are either overweight or obese and nearly 9 million children and adolescents are considered overweight (Tao & Glazer, 2005). The effects of obesity are wide spread. Obesity is directly tied to increased risks for heart disease, cancer, diabetes, osteoarthritis, and psychological morbidity (Library of Congress, 2004). Obesity costs billions of dollars annually in terms of health care and lost productivity and increases the cost of health insurance, particularly Medicaid and Medicare, significantly. For those of us who pay for our insurance, both employers and employees, we have experienced this rise in costs. This has caused society to suffer a substantial health burden.
In summary, the US obesity epidemic is exactly that, a chronic disease that has been ignored for so long that it is now at epidemic levels and growing exponentially. This national problem has been allowed to continue as a result of how private healthcare companies have historically performed their internal economic analyses done as part of their normal course of business. In the past, private healthcare has taken a per unit breakeven analysis, and determined (based solely on the financial impacts to their own company) that it was better to deny coverage for gastric surgery, and “promote” moving obese policy holders off the private healthcare company’s coverage. And once obese patients are removed from insurance coverage, private
In my opinion, employers can implement the rules and requirements for their employees, as long as they do not go against the law in the current state or the country. Charging employees more for health insurance, or requiring to quit smoking, both seem pretty reasonable strategies to me. A lot of people value financial stability. So, the fear to be fired, or pay a lot more for medical insurance, can encourage people to stop smoking and actually benefit their own life and increase the company’s productivity. However, the new rules and regulations should be implemented step by step. In my opinion, Weyco’s approach was very smart. Fifteen months was a reasonable amount of time to quit smoking. Company did not just throw this policy to its employees, but actually did everything possible to help them save their jobs.
Obesity has become a serious problem with more than one third of adults being obese in the United States. Obesity is seen as a self-destructive behavior accompanied with smoking and use of other drugs thus, government officials and other business bureaucrats expressed the need to impose higher health insurance premiums on the obese. Obesity is not always due to the personal behavior of people and can be linked with the environment and genetics; I personally feel that obese people should not pay a higher health insurance premium compared to those that aren’t. Government officials and other business bureaucrats