Direct Healthcare Trend Continues to Grow, Finds Mercer Survey on Worksite Medical Clinics

Mercer logoThe trend toward direct healthcare continues to grow, according to a recent survey from respected human resources consultant Mercer. Its 2018 Worksite Medical Clinics survey reports the number of employers with 5,000 or more employees offering onsite and nearsite health centers has increased from 24 percent in 2012 to 33 percent this year.

Improving access and ensuring high quality of care were two major reasons organizations considered providing direct access to care for employees, the survey found. It noted that “establishing a new clinic or expanding an existing occupational health clinic to provide general medical services, is one way employers can ensure that their employees — and even employees’ families — will have timely access to quality care.”

Additional survey findings further demonstrated that more organizations are taking steps to connect their employees with high-value healthcare:

A growing trend
The Mercer survey found that employer-dedicated health centers continue to gain in popularity, especially among large employers. In 2018, one-third of all organizations with 5,000 or more employees provide a dedicated health center at or near the worksite, verses 24 percent in 2012 and 17 percent in 2007.

Comprehensive primary services
Approximately two-thirds of survey respondents with dedicated health centers allow members to select the center as their primary care provider. In 2015, only 49 percent of respondents permitted members to do so. This shift indicates a broader trend toward providing more comprehensive services at these centers.

A significant value
While not all respondents invested the time and resources to measure ROI, those that did found their health centers provided positive returns. More than half reported returns of 1.5 or higher.

“The data from Mercer reflects growing interest among employers in connecting their employees to high-quality primary care that helps them live healthier lives while lowering overall healthcare costs,” said President Jami Doucette, MD, MBA, Premise Health. “We expect this interest to continue next year, as offering onsite and nearsite health is the most direct way for organizations to influence healthcare delivery and provide convenient access, quality services and an exceptional experience to their people.”

Read the full report from Mercer here.