Workplace wellness programs are constantly evolving, not only from the planning and strategy of the programs but also from the compliance aspect. Last year was an active year in for the EEOC. They had two new regulations passed in regards to employee wellness program that refer to the guidelines from the ADA and GINA. Both of these regulations passed last year and became effective for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2017.
The first rule provides guidance around the employer-sponsored wellness programs as they pertain to employees with health restrictions and disabilities (ADA) and non-employee/spouses health information (GINA). It states that programs must be voluntary and an employer cannot deny access to the health plan if an employee refuses to participate. Reasonable accommodations must be available to employees with disabilities that are unable to participate or complete the program.