There’s a certain service that’s likely already included in your health plan. It could boost productivity and make health care more convenient for your employees: a nurse hotline.
Nuse hotlines give patients around-the-clock access to front-line nursing specialists who can help diagnose, triage and offer basic prevention or treatment strategies — all over the phone. These services offer private care without the need for travel, which makes them especially attractive for patients with mental health concerns, as Entrepreneur notes, or who live in rural areas, according to Becker’s Health IT and CIO Review.
Nurse hotlines offer cost savings for employers and employees alike — and as more evidence backs up their success, all signs point to their continued growth in workplace wellness.
Benefits to the Employee
Through access to a discreet 24/7 hotline, employees speak with a trained provider from their own home or office, with a potentially shorter wait time. Plus, with a trained specialist on call to answer common questions, patients have a single source of trusted information, saving them a trip to the emergency room (for non-life-threatening injuries) or the stress of a Google search that could bring scary and misleading health information.
Families may appreciate the ease of use of nurse hotlines, especially if they offer access to pediatric specialists. Considering the many stressors that come with a sick child, having a nurse just a phone call away — at all hours of the night — can offer peace of mind during chaotic situations.
Employees stand to gain cost savings, too — since many hotlines offer low-cost or free options as part of a health plan.
Benefits to the Employer
From an employer’s perspective, increased hotline usage could boost workplace productivity and presence, since fewer employees may need time off for doctor’s visits for themselves or their children.
But perhaps the biggest benefit lies in the potential cost benefits of growing a healthy, happy workforce — saving as much as $6 billion annually. Thanks to nursing help that’s just a call away, employees get easier access to quality health care, which in turn keeps them active and productive workplace contributors.
Encouraging Nurse Hotline Usage
Employees may be reticent to use a nurse hotline, especially if they’ve never used one before. Others may not even know this option is available to them. Communicate the benefits to employees. Be sure to have answers at the ready about confidentiality, available services, and when to choose a nurse hotline over an in-person visit. Your broker or health insurance carrier may have resources available to facilitate these conversations and encourage your employees to take advantage of this valuable service.
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