NBGH Begins Prep on Cancer in the Workplace Guide

December 16, 2010 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – The National Business Group on Health (NBGH) has launched a multi-year initiative to help employers address cancer in the workplace. 

An NBGH news release said the three-year project, which is being conducted in collaboration with the National Comprehensive Cancer Networkwill result in a series of resources and tools for large employers, including an Employer’s Guide to Cancer Treatment and Prevention

According to the announcement, cancer is the second leading cause of long-term disability (LTD) and the sixth leading cause of short-term disability (STD) in the United States.  The indirect costs of cancer to employers include an estimated $136 billion in lost productivity each year. 

“Employers are becoming more and more concerned about cancer in their employees and families,” said Helen Darling, President and CEO of the National Business Group on Health, in the news release.   “Clearly, it is important that employers educate their beneficiaries about preventable forms of cancer.  Moreover, employers need to implement strategies to manage and support employees who are diagnosed with cancer and also provide programs and services aimed at employee caregivers.   This project will go a long way toward helping employers meet this challenge.”

The tools and objectives will be based on the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines), which encompass clinical guidelines and recommendations based on evidence and expert judgment for every aspect of the cancer care continuum.  

Project Goals  

As outlined by the Business Group, the project includes the following objectives:

  • Establish a 25-member National Advisory Committee on Employer Services for the Cancer Continuum of Care that will develop recommendations for the design, quality assurance, structure, and integration of resources, programs and services around the full range of benefits and programs to include the health plan, health and productivity programs, and health promotion/wellness services.
  • Create a reference Summary Document on Employee Sponsored Benefit Design, Pharmacy Benefits, and Contracting with Health Plans that will help employers determine whether their current benefits are consistent with evidence-based cancer care and will ensure access to care consistent with recommended NCCN Guidelines. 
  • Develop an Employer Cancer Health Benefits Toolkit covering general medical, pharmacy, and mental health benefits for the continuum of cancer care.
  • Create a companion set of Benefit Manager Guides for other strategic audiences, such as disability managers, focused on the productivity indicators including incidental absence, short- and long-term disability, family medical leave, workers’ compensation and EAPs.
  • Develop Tools for Employees:  Cancer Survivorship, Health Promotion and Wellness which will include fact sheets, information brochures and other literature on various aspects of cancer, treatment and care.

More information about the NBGH is at www.businessgrouphealth.org.