Time for employers to incentivise healthy lifestyle

People exercising at Tampines Central Park, on Feb 09, 2019.
People exercising at Tampines Central Park, on Feb 09, 2019.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

Health Minister Gan Kim Yong was spot on when he said that the most effective way to keep healthcare affordable is to stay healthy (Rate of growth in healthcare spending unsustainable: Gan, March 7).

Often, many Singaporeans cite long or irregular working hours and sleep deprivation as reasons for being unable to exercise regularly and keep fit.

If we are serious about the health of Singaporeans, it is high time that employers and the Government factored in incentives to promote a healthy lifestyle among workers and reward them accordingly.

Healthy workers take less medical leave and the man-hours saved as a result should be given back to workers in the form of better prospects and promotion, and more leave and cash incentives.

It is time for us to recognise that keeping healthy is no longer just a personal affair, but something which requires the involvement of both employers and the Government for it to succeed.

Seah Yam Meng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 13, 2019, with the headline 'Time for employers to incentivise healthy lifestyle'. Print Edition | Subscribe