Supporting Employee Education and Health Literacy

The Link Between Education and Health

A recent Benefits Guide article cites the Brookings Institute when they explain the link between education and health. Their research shows that the mortality rates of high school graduates are twice as high as those of college graduates, and each year of college is shown to reduce mortality rates by up to 19%. This doesn’t mean that you have to go to college to be healthy, but education in general is one of the many social determinants of one’s health and wellbeing.

Education allows for higher paying job opportunities as well as the ability to buy more nutritious foods, which are often more expensive. It also gives an individual better access to healthcare and more opportunities to improve one’s own health literacy.

What Can Employers Do?

Employers who support their employees’ educational endeavors are improving their employees’ quality of life. Not only that, but research shows that supporting education leads to a happier, healthier, and more satisfied workforce. Listed below are three ways employers can support employee education as outlined by The Benefits Guide:

  • Career Development: Set each employee up for success, growth and professional development. Encourage them to attend conferences and educational workshops. You can also provide opportunities for them to shadow more experienced employees, participate in projects that require more responsibility, and allow them to learn new skills and progress within the company.
  • Support Higher Education: Create a company culture that is dedicated to and supportive of life-long learning. Offer flexible hours for those taking college classes and consider partnering with local schools and universities. As part of your benefits package, you can offer tuition assistance or prepaid tuition to help ease financial stress. You can even offer programs within the organization that help employees choose the classes that will help them with their career goals!
  • Improve Health Literacy: Educating your employees about their health and healthcare is one of the best ways to help improve your employees’ wellbeing. You can provide workshops, brochures, lunch-and-learns, or sections on your company wellness portal that help employees improve their health literacy.

For more information, visit the Benefits Guide!

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