I am excited to share the release of the National Academy of Medicine’s discussion paper titled, “The ROI of Health and Well-Being: Business Investment in Healthier Communities”. I was pleased to serve on the Action Collaborative on Business Engagement in Building Healthier Communities of the Roundtable on Population Health Improvement at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, along with the authors of this paper. Sara Zellner, PhD, is the founder and principal of Lynz Consulting LLC. Lawrence Bowdish, PhD, is director, research and food security, US Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Corporate Citizenship Center.
Why should businesses invest in community health? The cost of unhealthy employees to businesses is significant to their bottom line. The World Economic Forum estimates a cumulative economic output loss of $47 trillion over the next two decades from noncommunicable diseases, like cancer, diabetes, and mental health. As businesses acknowledge the importance of health in the workplace, they are also beginning to recognize the relationship between their employees’ health and the communities where their employees and customers live. This newly released discussion paper from the National Academy of Medicine explores business motivations for investing in community health and the challenges businesses face in doing so.
Building healthy communities is everyone’s business. This is an important initiative from a critical stakeholder community.