Associations between health risk appraisal scores and employee medical claims costs in a manufacturing company

Am J Health Promot. 1991 Sep-Oct;6(1):46-54. doi: 10.4278/0890-1171-6.1.46.


Background: The bivariate relationships between 18 health-related measures on a health appraisal and prospective medical claims costs were examined among 1,838 employees for three consecutive years.

Methods: Employees were classified into high- or low-risk categories for each of the 18 health-related measures, and divided into high- or low-cost categories according to their averaged three-year medical costs respective to the mean of their sex/age subgroup.

Results: Average annual medical costs for the 18 health-related measures were $67 to $778 higher for the employees classified at high risk. The high-cost category was statistically associated with high-risk status in 11 of 18 health-related measures with a high-cost/high-risk to high-cost/low-risk ratio of 1.26 to 2.50. The average annual medical claims costs were also significantly related to number of high-risk classifications.

Discussion: This study provides strong statistical evidence that, regardless of age and sex, employees in this sample with positive behaviors cost less in medical claims from 11 of 18 health-related measures.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Female
  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Benefit Plans, Employee / economics
  • Health Care Costs*
  • Health Promotion / economics*
  • Health Status Indicators*
  • Humans
  • Insurance Claim Review
  • Male
  • Michigan
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Health*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires