Fall Update: Americans Struggle to Keep Their New Year’s Health Resolutions

Anthem, Inc. survey finds time and energy are among top barriers

INDIANAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–While many Americans may spend the fall months recovering from their
summertime activities, this is a great time of year to revisit the
resolutions made nine months ago. According to a series of Anthem, Inc.
surveys – from August and February – many Americans have fallen off the
bandwagon.

“Life got in the way,” was the reason 44 percent didn’t stick to their
resolutions. Time (37 percent) and energy
(38 percent) are other barriers. And, 83 percent agreed that anything
that makes their lives simpler would go a
long way towards helping them keep their resolutions. In addition, 71
percent of those who are insured wished their health insurance plan made
their life simpler.

“We recognize this challenge,” said Pam Kehaly, president of Anthem
Inc.’s Specialty business and West region. “And it’s interesting to see
that the survey results indicate that simplifying
things by providing integrated benefits to consumers can save them time
and energy, so they can instead devote their time and energy towards
other priorities, like their New Year’s resolutions, many of which are
related to improving their health.”

So, what are some of the resolutions? Health improvements topped the
list of goals for resolution makers: four in ten (38 percent) of
Americans resolved to exercise, while three in 10 Americans resolved to
lose weight (32 percent) and also have a healthier diet (30 percent).

Back in February, “lack of motivation” was the reason more than half of
those surveyed (59 percent) had trouble keeping their resolutions. In
fact, while last winter many were candid about the difficulties they
were facing, by August three in ten (29 percent) confessed they make the
same resolutions every year and never keep it!

Integrated benefits can be a solution that helps people stay on track
and meet their health goals. Survey results show that Americans welcome
an integrated benefits approach. For example:

  • 69 percent of those who are insured say they would be more likely to
    turn to an insurer that integrated health, dental, vision and other
    offerings for help in keeping their resolutions.
  • 75 percent of those surveyed believe that an insurance company that
    uses information from all types of health care providers (e.g.,
    doctors, dentists and eye doctors) can offer its members better care
    than an insurance company that only focuses on one type of information.
  • 89 percent believe that offering integrated benefits is an important
    way that employers can take care of its employees.

Streamlined communications, better service, less stress and a healthier
workplace are some of the advantages of having integrated benefits. For
example, integrated benefits have helped 21 percent of employees with
disability claims return to work early, reducing their average
disability time by seven days.1 This translates into 40 more
hours of productivity and a nearly 10 percent reduction in disability
costs.2

Employers and employees overwhelmingly agree with the advantages of
having integrated benefits and intuitively understand the connection
between the eyes, teeth and overall health. It makes good business sense
for employers and it can help simplify the lives of Americans so they
can put their time and energy towards staying on track with their
resolutions.

Sources:
1-Anthem Pilot Study,
2012.
2-Anthem Pilot Study, 2012.

The report presents the findings of an online omnibus conducted using
the field services of Russell Research, from August 7 – 10, 2015. The
study reached a national sample of 1,148 American adults ages 18 and
older. Comparisons are to the winter survey, conducted from January 30 –
February 2, 2015, conducted among 1,046 American adults. The national
sample for each study was weighted to ensure the results reflect the
general population. The margin of error for the total sample in both
studies is ±3.0% at the 95% confidence level. This means that if we were
to replicate the study, we would expect to get the same results (within
3.0 percentage points) 95 times out of 100.

About Anthem, Inc.

Anthem is working to transform health care with trusted and caring
solutions. Our health plan companies deliver quality products and
services that give their members access to the care they need. With
nearly 70 million people served by its affiliated companies, including
more than 38 million enrolled in its family of health plans, Anthem is
one of the nation’s leading health benefits companies. For more
information about Anthem’s family of companies, please visit www.antheminc.com/companies.

Contacts

Anthem, Inc.
Donna Page, 404-842-8105
donna.page@anthem.com