Objectives: To develop a calculator that measures the potential cost impact of changes in health risks and presents results graphically.
Methods: Demographic and health risk data for Novartis employees were input into a calculator that estimated employer medical care, short-term disability, absenteeism, and presenteeism costs associated with risk prevalence, based on a previous cross-sectional analysis of the association between risks and costs. Estimated costs were presented as a relative score, the Novartis Health Index, which is a measure of the overall costs associated with the risk profile of a population of interest.
Results: The population of Novartis employees had an index score of 81.5 (out of 100), indicating a relatively healthy risk profile, and baseline annual costs of $9619 per employee. Risk reduction of 1% and 10% for tobacco, alcohol use, and emotional health risks had the potential to generate annual savings of $91,500 and $915,000, respectively.
Conclusions: The Novartis Health Index framework allows employers to track performance relative to health risk management using a single, accessible, user-friendly measure.