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Being obese can weigh on employers’ insurance

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The additional health care costs of obesity are substantial – almost $60 billion a year – so it makes sense that employers are implementing various kinds of wellness programs to improve their employees’ health and in turn, reduce health insurance costs. There’s just one catch: some wellness programs are voluntary and others are mandatory. Some require employees to his certain biometric benchmarks or else face an increase in their health insurance premiums, as much as 30 percent. And while some would say that this is simply getting high-risk policyholders to carry their fair share of the risk, others suggest that this is health care reform being used to punish those who are already obese.