The Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) 2011 Employee Benefits report found that 31 percent of organizations offer rewards or bonuses to employees who complete certain health and wellness activities. Some organizations offer health care discounts to employees for participating in health-related assessments or programs.

Other results from SHRM’s research include:

• 14 percent provided health care premium discounts to employees for getting an annual health risk assessment.

• 12 percent provided a discount to employees for not using tobacco products.

• 11 percent offered discounts to employees for participating in a wellness program.

• 7 percent provided health care premium discounts to employees for participating in a weight-loss program.

However, some companies have begun to use disincentives in which employees pay more for their health insurance premiums if they do not incorporate physical activity into their lives or participate in wellness programs that they need. Instituting disincentives could be viewed as a harsh strategy, but for some employees who resist changing their unhealthy behaviors, it may actually work.