PHILADELPHIA--CIGNA today released the findings of a new study that reveal an unmistakable trend: Integrating disability with health care programs has the potential to lower employers' total benefits costs and help disabled employees get back to work sooner and stay at work.  As a result of the positive results found in the study, CIGNA is lowering its prices on disability benefits purchased with CIGNA medical coverage.

"We believe that over time, integrating disability and health care programs may truly be the 'giant leap forward' all employers and their employees are seeking when it comes to total benefits cost control, productivity gains, and enhanced health and wellness," said Jay Menario, senior vice president of marketing for CIGNA Group Insurance.  "If we can assist employees with conditions most likely to cause repeat disability, like those with back problems or heart disease or diabetes, we can help employers and employees prevent lost time from work and manage overall benefits costs. The revelations in this study validate our intuition about the intimate relationship between disability and health care costs."

The study looked at a total of 60,000 short-term disability claims and compared the results of those insureds who were covered by CIGNA short-term disability (STD) and CIGNA medical care to those insureds who were covered by CIGNA STD and a different health care provider.  "The objective was to quantify the impact that having the same health care and short-term disability provider has on reducing overall costs and length of disability," explained Jim Lyski, senior vice president and chief marketing officer for CIGNA HealthCare.

"The results were clear that CIGNA's integrated approach to disability and health care drove lower costs and shortened workplace absences. In the process, we gained deeper insights into the important role that return-to-work, chronic disease management, and depression may play in the overall cost and productivity equation."

 Source: CIGNA

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