The Stress Number(TM) Report For 2011

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In an ongoing study of Stress in America, The Oxygen Plan reports 2011 findings of the new health metric, The Stress Number™. Over 47,000 respondents have completed the revolutionary online stress test by The Oxygen Plan Corporation to measure their home, work and social stress. The annual economic impact of employee stress is almost $5,000 per employee and manifests in absenteeism, presenteeism, turnover, group health expense, productivity and employee engagement.

The Oxygen Plan Stress Test

Stress Test - The Oxygen Plan

The Stress Number™ findings for 2011 of home (47), work (53) and social (54) indicate stress, and its ill effects on our lives and health, remains a serious issue.

Employee stress drains $400 billion a year from U.S. employers--yet many organizations do not fully understand the damage stress causes to their profit margins, employee productivity levels and employee health. In an ongoing study of Stress in America, The Oxygen Plan Corporation reports the 2011 findings of the new health metric - the Stress Number™. To date, over 47,000 respondents have completed the 30 question, 5 minute test to assess their individual stress. The stress test has 10 questions for home, work and social stress. The scoring for each question ranges 0 - 100, whereby a score of 0 means extreme stress (red), to 100, meaning stress free (green).

Key 2011 Findings: “2011 Was Another Stressful Year"
With over 11,000 respondents completing The Oxygen Plan’s stress test for the survey, the 2011 Stress Number™ for home is 47, followed by work and social stress at 53 and 54. “The 2011 Stress Test™ results demonstrate that there is still plenty of stress out there and the Stress Number™ is essentially unchanged as compared to 2009 and 2010," says Dr. Donald E. Williams, board-certified clinical health psychologist (American Board of Professional Psychology/ABPP), and Chief Science Officer, The Oxygen Plan. "Stress continues to be a concern in the lives of people – at work, in the social lives and especially at home. We continue to see each Stress Number™ in the yellow in all life phases. Employers should be increasingly alarmed given that stress levels remain unchecked for 3 years running. A company of 10,000 has lost up to $50 million for each of the past 3 years for a total of nearly $150 million. The costs are staggering and should grab the attention of any CEO or CFO, particularly since stress is the #1 modifiable health risk factor.”

A "Stress Number™" can be used as an aggregated health risk assessment tool for assessing employee stress. Three research papers from The Oxygen Plan Corporation help employers understand how they can use the Stress Number™ to increase stress management program effectiveness and optimize their Employee Assistance Program.

The impact of stress in the U.S. workplace is bad news for employers as it manifests in lost productivity, absenteeism, presenteeism, group health expense, employee turnover and disability expenses. "Many organizations invest in resources like EAPs, work-life programs and policies, and health and wellness programs," said Dr. Williams. "These are essential but reactive initiatives. Many organizations are unaware of their employees' actual stress levels, how much of their stress is job-related, the root causes of their stress, or that they can be proactive in terms of addressing the very real problems and associated costs." "Stress diminishes the engagement and effectiveness of a workforce, erodes workers' physical and emotional health, and drives up medical and insurance costs," adds Eric Lucas, CEO of The Oxygen Plan Corporation.

“With the Stress Number™, it is now possible to measure, compute, aggregate, report, and trend a stress metric as it relates to personal health or organizational cost,” says Dr. Williams. “Now, we are able to assess stress, calculate the Stress Number™, provide The Oxygen Plan program and re-measure stress for individuals or organizations. The Stress Number™ is a significant development in the field of health metrics.” “We feel the Stress Number™ should be used to help individuals and organizations manage health and health care costs – just like blood pressure and BMI," adds Lucas. “Because stress in the home or social life impacts employees at work, and vice versa, it's in employers' best interest to know the aggregate employee Stress Number™ for their organization and get a line of sight into root causes.”

About The Oxygen Plan Corporation
The Oxygen Plan specializes in decoding stress and helping employers lower health care costs, improve productivity and strengthen employee engagement. The Oxygen Plan, co-developed by Dr. Donald E. Williams, board-certified clinical health psychologist (American Board of Professional Psychology/ABPP), and Chief Science Officer and Founder, Eric Lucas, is the only stress reduction program to use a patent-pending green, yellow, red color coding to easily facilitate stress recognition and behavior change for individuals and organizations. The Oxygen Plan is also the home of the Stress Number™, the new health metric, and first to quantify stress levels. For more information visit http://www.theoxygenplan.com.

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