On-Site Chiropractic Care Reduces Healthcare Utilization

Owning and operating your own business can be quite an undertaking. Not only do you have to properly look after your customers to ensure that you are still in business 10, 20, and 50 years down the road, you also need to look after your employees. After all, your success is largely determinant on their ability to do their job, making their health and happiness critical to the equation. According to a study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, one way to enhance your staff's wellness by reducing their healthcare utilization (which also potentially lowers your cost as an employer) may be to offer on-site chiropractic care.

From 2010 to 2012, 1,635 Cerner HealthPlan members received chiropractic care at least once, some of them in on-site chiropractic facilities sponsored by their employers and the remainder via off-site chiropractic services. The on-site group had a median age of 32 years and contained slightly more males (54.11 percent); whereas the off-site group had a median age of 38 years and contained slightly more females (52.83 percent).

Researchers found that off-site chiropractic patients not only had a higher rate of initial radiology services (like MRI's, ultrasounds, and CT scans), they also had a greater number of repeat radiological visits too. Furthermore, off-site chiropractic patients experienced "significantly higher outpatient utilization," showing an increase in repeat services in this area as well.

Off-site chiropractic patients even reported to the emergency room more often than individuals who engaged in on-site chiropractic care. And it should be noted that the off-site group had more chiropractic and physical therapy visits than the on-site group.

While this study implies that on-site chiropractic is potentially more effective when it comes to employee health and wellness, the researchers remind their readers that more studies should be conducted. This is necessary to determine whether this is a case of cause-and-effect (on-site chiropractic care causing fewer healthcare visits), or if there are other factors that should be considered, such as demographics of the participants and presence of conditions that cannot be benefited from chiropractic treatment.

In the meantime, because chiropractic care has been proven to be an effective form of treatment for many different conditions, its inclusion in a healthcare plan is often beneficial; whether on-site or off.

Kindermann SL, Hou Q, Miller RM. Impact of chiropractic services at an on-site health center. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014;56(9):990-992.