Employee Healthcare - Do you measure up?

clock

So the employee health risk assessment is in place, but are you measuring what you think you are? Dr Peter Mills explains the pitfalls

A DESIGN FOR LIFE

It is not just health where we can see the results of poor questionnaire design. How many times have you read about a survey that has been conducted and thought “Really? Can that be true? Is Gravesend really the worst place to live in the UK?” (or similar).

Bizarre results can be generated by having poorly constructed questions or by conducting your survey on a non-representative population. 

The latter is not too much of an issue in the corporate health arena, provided you can persuade a significant proportion of your workforce to complete the ­questionnaire, so focusing on the validity of the question set should improve strategic focus.

The validation of an HRA, or any questionnaire for that matter, can take time and effort. Ultimately, what needs to be determined is whether individuals’ answers are an accurate representation of their true state.

To achieve this, the output from domains within an HRA can be compared with “gold standard” questionnaires that focus upon the specific areas.

As an HRA covers a wide range of health, lifestyle and quality of life constructs, it is often necessary to use a number of gold standards to assess the validity of each of these.

By getting a cohort of individuals to complete both the HRA and the domain-specific questionnaires, one can compare the results and assess whether the (usually briefer) HRA questions correlate well with the gold standards.

If they don’t, it is likely that changes to the wording or responses of the HRA questions are needed.

It is also good practice to do formal user testing on a questionnaire. This is especially important now that the majority of HRAs in use within the corporate setting are delivered via the internet.

Understanding how users interact with on-screen questions is an important first-step in optimising accuracy and timeliness of completion.

In addition the web, together with the increasing penetration of smartphones within society, offers up new opportunities to engage users completing an HRA by using images to help convey concepts and scripting to ensure individuals are not asked questions that are irrelevant.

The days of text-heavy HRAs should be a thing of the past, not only because individuals with lower literacy levels often struggle with this sort of presentation, but also because when asking about such concepts as nutritional balance and physical activity, a picture really does paint a thousand words (see Figure 1 for example).  

Dr Peter Mills is director of medical consultancy Glasslyn Health Solutions

More on Regulation

Clare Moffat, Head of the Intermediary Development & Technical Team at Royal London

Partner Insight: What the new Consumer Duty means for advisers and their clients

The new Consumer Duty will require protection businesses of all sizes to deliver good outcomes for retail customers and advisers should be prepared for the new regulations.

Clare Moffat, Head of the Intermediary Development & Technical Team at Royal London
clock 04 July 2022 • 1 min read
Treasury sub-committee launched to scrutinise financial regulators post-Brexit

Treasury sub-committee launched to scrutinise financial regulators post-Brexit

Additional Financial Services Scrutiny Unit

Georgie Lee
clock 27 June 2022 • 2 min read
FOS appoints new CEO and chief ombudsman

FOS appoints new CEO and chief ombudsman

Replacing Nausicaa Delfas

Ayesha Venkataraman
clock 09 June 2022 • 2 min read

Highlights

The COVER Review June 2022: Pride, Sandy's Story, Consumer Duty and IP for Gen Z

The COVER Review June 2022: Pride, Sandy's Story, Consumer Duty and IP for Gen Z

Now available for members to watch

John Brazier
clock 23 June 2022 • 1 min read
Protection & Technology: Where do we go from here?

Protection & Technology: Where do we go from here?

"The potential for this technology to revolutionise our industry is huge"

Hemma Visavadia
clock 27 June 2022 • 6 min read
Spotlight: Alzheimer's disease & dementia

Spotlight: Alzheimer's disease & dementia

"The underwriting of Alzheimer's disease is relatively straightforward"

John Downes
clock 24 June 2022 • 5 min read