What is Workplace Wellness? Cartoons & Stats 5 Random Wellness Stats Glossary

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The health costs of smoking

21% of Canadian workers are currently "daily or regular" smokers, and 9% more are exposed to second hand smoke at home

21% are currently 'daily or regular' smokers, and 9% are exposed to second hand smoke at home
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The Conference Board updated its 1997 study on the costs to employers who employ smokers, and it found that the total costs have increased from $2,565 per smoking employee in 1997 to $3,396 in 2006.

Smoking increases employers' costs through decreased productivity, increased absenteeism, and increased life insurance costs. And, contrary to popular perception, smoking does not help people keep the weight off.

"Overweight men who smoked daily in 1994/95 were almost 50% more likely to have become obese by 2002/03 than were those who had never smoked." - Statistics Canada, The Daily, April 7, 2005

There is evidence that a few employers in the US have begun charging extra premiums on benefit packages for smokers, and some are even refusing to hire smokers. Here in Canada, a 1994 survey by Statistics Canada ("General Social Survey") found that smokers took and average of 1.8 more sick days off per year than non-smokers. All in all, Canadian employers are waking up to the benefit of helping employees reduce their dependence on cigarettes.

The Healthy Smoker program

70% of cold turkey quitters are smoking again within three months and 90% are smoking again within eighteen months, making the wisdom of "cold turkey" quitting questionable. According to many medical studies, tobacco is a stronger addiction than either cocaine or heroin. The Healthy Smoker program helps people quit smoking by becoming healthier first.

To find out more about this program check out the book page or to receive more information about smoking cessation, contact us.


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