At Zocdoc, a digital health company with a mission to give power to the patient, we were shocked to uncover that two-thirds of our own employees were not going to the preventive care visits covered by our comprehensive insurance plan. When Zocdoc employees were asked why not, a resounding answer emerged: work gets in the way.
In today's workplace, employees rarely leave their desks for lunch, let alone to visit the doctor. This is especially true when it comes to preventive care. According to a Zocdoc/Kelton Global survey, 86% of employed Americans would cancel or delay a preventive card appointment due to workplace pressures. Yet the CDC reports that if every American received the recommended clinical preventive care, it would save more than 100,000 lives per year.
To address this pervasive cultural conflict, Zocdoc, in partnership with 11 founding partner companies, introduced Unsick Day: a day off to visit the doctor when you aren't sick, to take care of the important appointments that are easy to put off, like physicals and teeth cleanings, all with your company's support. Healthier employees mean a healthier workplace. Everyone wins.
Thousands of Unsick Days have already been granted to our respective teams in 2017. But we believe every working American should reap the benefits. Our goal for launch and in the years to come is to raise awareness around the work-health imbalance that exists in today's culture, increase access to preventive care, and ultimately influence a cultural shift in workplaces across the United States.
A concept that connects to our mission
Unsick Day has a clear connection to our mission, give power to the patient. And preventive care is a critical aspect of the overall patient experience, yet one of the first things to fall off a busy calendar. We needed to find a way to address a specific barrier to care and introduce a solution that everyone could rally behind.
A win-win for employers and employees
Unsick Day isn't just a win for working Americans who struggle to stay on top of their health – it's a win for their employers too. Zocdoc's survey found only one in four American workers have utilized all of their preventive health benefits. This means companies are spending millions on benefits that are going to waste. When employees skip out on preventive checkups, it translates to more sick days, lower productivity, and higher costs for employers. Unsick Day solves for this: helping employers save money and increasing their team's productivity.
A solution accessible to all companies
We designed Unsick Day to be flexible and work with each company's unique culture and benefits plan. How it works is up to each company. The most important thing is for companies to offer their employees a dedicated day off each year to be used specifically for preventive care visits.
Pre-launch buy in from forward-thinking companies
To lend immediate credibility to the movement, we asked like-minded, progressive companies to join in. Zocdoc founded Unsick Day with Buffer, Capsule, Everyday Health, Foursquare, Greatist, Greenhouse, Handy, Oscar, Sailthru, Virgin Hotels, and Zola. With these 11 forward-thinking companies on board (and their help spreading the message far and wide), others took notice.
Targeted social campaigns that engage both employees and employers
Our cross-platform social strategy met employers and employees where they are – on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. With two distinct messages, we created targeted campaigns – one asking employees to speak up and request an Unsick Day from their companies and one urging employers and HR managers to join the movement and put their team's health first.
Our strategic targeting and tailored messaging ignited a social conversation around the problem and the cause by both employers and employees.
Dedicated Unsick Day website to drive education + sign ups
The unsickday.com website was a key element in bringing the campaign to life and giving both employers and employees a place to visit to learn more, sign up, or request an Unsick Day. When employees anonymously requested an Unsick Day, their work was done – Zocdoc then took action to advocate on their behalf and help make Unsick Day a reality in their workplace.
Ongoing advocacy for many more Unsick Days in the future
The Unsick Day launch was just the beginning. Our ultimate goal is to keep the conversation active and drive more companies to join, increasing access to preventive healthcare for every working American and creating culture of permission and encouragement to get that care across today's workplaces.
Ignited a conversation around the pervasive conflict between work and health
We successfully activated an important conversation around the serious cultural conflict that exists today between America's work and health. Beyond bringing awareness to this work-health imbalance, Unsick Day provided a solution to help employers make an immediate change in their workplaces.
Activated employers across the country to take note and take a stand
12 founding partners signed on to give their teams an Unsick Day even before the campaign's public launch. And since launch, thousands of employers and employees have reached out to learn more and get involved. This action has led to most impactful results of all: thousands of Unsick Days have already been granted to workers across the United States.
Gained widespread attention from media, employers and employees
In the first weeks of launch, Unsick Day garnered more than 70 million earned and social media impressions.
The launch resulted in more than 50 original media placements in the likes of CNBC, Wall Street Journal, Entrepreneur, Fox Business, CBS News, Fast Company, and more. And 100% of the media coverage was positive in sentiment. Glamour Magazine called Unsick Day "the next great job benefit", and Entrepreneur deemed it one of the best ideas of 2016.
Unsick Day also ignited an important social dialogue between employers, employees, government representatives, public health organizations, and more, using the dedicated hashtag #UnsickDay.
For a quick recap of the campaign's results, check out this video.