HR Support on Employee Health Programs

Editor's Note: Ensure your workplace is healthy and germ free.

Ashley ShawOverview: Not only are healthy employees more productive and absent less, and have lower health care costs, but having a successful employee health program means that employers are less likely to be fined for OSHA violations. When it comes to employee health concerns, there are many different considerations to take, including day to day concerns, widespread epidemics, mental health, smoking in and out of the workplace, and medical emergencies.

Having an employee health program that takes care of all the different health concerns will mean that the workplace is prepared for any different contingency. Plans might include training workers in CPR and the Heimlich Maneuver, installing an AED, teaching proper employee hygiene having flexible work schedules, establishing Employee Assistance Programs and Wellness Programs and creating no-smoking environments, among many others.

Whenever health issues are involved, though, it is important to take into account the Americans with Disabilities Act and what it will, or will not, allow you to do. This is especially pertinent when dealing with mental health concerns.

Trends: While many states have banned smoking in the workplace for years, it's not common knowledge that smoking outside the workplace is often a protected activity. Unless there is a valid reason for doing so, such as if the employer's main purpose is to teach the importance of smoking cessation, use caution before implementing policies regarding off-work smoking as it may be considered discriminatory.

Author: Ashley Shaw, JD, Legal Editor

Latest items in Employee Health

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: Maryland

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers with an enclosed workplace seeking to advise employees that smoking is prohibited in the workplace and demonstrate compliance with Maryland law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: Alaska

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers with workplaces open to the public or that seek to advise employees that smoking is prohibited in enclosed/indoor workplaces areas should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate the employer's Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to encourage and promote good health and to clearly advise employees of the prohibition against smoking in the workplace should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate the employer's Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Drug-Free Workplace Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to adopt a policy prohibiting the use, sale, possession, etc. of drugs and/or alcohol should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate the employer's Drug-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Employee Assistance Program Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to advise employees that they offer employee assistance programs to help the workforce remain both physically and mentally healthy should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate their Employee Assistance Program policy to employees.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: West Virginia

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers with factories, mercantile establishments, mills or workshops seeking to prohibit smoking in the workplace, inform employees that smoking is prohibited in the workplace and demonstrate compliance with West Virginia law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate the employer's Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: Utah

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    An employer with an enclosed workplace seeking to inform employees that smoking, including use of electronic cigarettes, is prohibited in the workplace and demonstrate compliance with Utah law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate their Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: Arkansas

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    An employer with an enclosed workplace seeking to inform employees that smoking is prohibited in the workplace and demonstrate their compliance with Arkansas law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate their Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: Idaho

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to prohibit smoking in the workplace should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate the employer's Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

  • Smoke-Free Workplace Handbook Statement: Arizona

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to to inform employees that smoking is prohibited in the workplace and to demonstrate compliance with Arizona law should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook to communicate the employer's Smoke-Free Workplace policy to employees.

About this topic

HR and legal considerations for employers regarding employee health programs. Support on keeping employees healthy and productive while at work.