The Affordable Care Act For Wellness Programs

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In recent years, health has become an increasing concern as obesity rates climb around the world, and especially in the United States. According to the World Health Organization (2015), obesity rates have doubled since the 1980s and will continue to rise if this trend continues. There are many factors that contribute to this obesity epidemic, which include larger portion sizes, more processed foods, changes in technology, and fewer jobs that require manual work. As waist sizes are growing, so are concerns for the future of our world and action is being taken by many companies to improve the health of their employees. In recent years laws have been passed through the Affordable Care Act to promote wellness programs in the workplace. 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). Wellness programs have become extremely
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