Book #5: Why Nobody Believes the Numbers, Distinguishing Fact From Fiction In Population Health Management (2012). By Al Lewis.
Fifth-Grade Math Debunks Bogus ROI Reports
Al Lewis is entertaining, funny, and a good teacher. This is the kind of book you could market as “the book insurance companies… wellness businesses… benefit consultants…. and benefit brokers do not want you to read.”
The math is pretty simple to follow, but you’ll probably want to re-read the key explanations a couple times to make sure you’ve got it.
Here’s one of his sharp-pointed quotes:
“As mentioned, plausibility testing is too easy to require consultants, and runs the risk of showing no reduction, which could be costly for vendors… As a result, for years many organizations have been managing (for example) cardiac disease in order to prevent heart attacks, without ever noting whether their heart attack rate is higher or lower than average, or whether it is declining faster or slower than average.”
The point above:
- To know what was average for heart attack events in your area and organization.
- Then focus on reducing those events in your population.
- By knowing the history of the event in question, over the time period measured, you’ll know if any reports of cost savings coming from your vendors correlate to your experience. You’ll know if you’ve accomplished the goal of reducing these health events or not. Yet nobody is verifying program results in this way.
Al Lewis is becoming an annoying whistle blower (to some) on all the bad data used in wellness outcome reporting. He’s the one that noticed Safeway’s wellness program was reporting huge health-care savings months before it actually started. And his humor is in full throttle when he talks about all the ROI reports that claim more savings in disease categories than the total spent on those diseases. One of his rules is you can’t save more than you spend.
But he also dedicates chapter five of his book to places where the data is being reported correctly, and names several people within the wellness business who provide good data.
This concludes the Health & Wellness Promotion
2013 Summer Reading Program
Hope you enjoyed the reading! Now let’s go change the world.
Check out the other books in The Health & Wellness Promotion 2013 Summer Reading Program – click here.
Embed this infographic on your own site
Copy and paste this code into your blog post or web page:
[textbox rows=”3″]<a href=”https://www.hopehealth.com/2013/06/the-health-wel…program-book-5/p=4114″><img title=”The Health & Wellness Promotion 2013 Summer Reading Program… Book #5″ src=”https://www.hopehealth.com/images/blog-images/BMI-Poster.gif” /></a>[/textbox]
Shawn is the President and Founder of Hope Health. For over 30 years, his work has focused on bringing clear, easy-to-read, and watch health messages to the public via workplaces. He bills himself as the “Best C+ Student in the Wellness Biz” because, as he says, “I like to challenge the notion that there is no such thing as a stupid question.” Shawn is on a mission to tie workplaces into their surrounding communities to share resources and ideas in an effort to improve the health of all Americans.
You may reach Shawn at sconnors@HopeHealth.com or 800-334-4094.