Back to top

Taking a Whole-Person Approach to Musculoskeletal Health

Musculoskeletal disorders, or MSDs, are conditions that can impact your muscles, bones, joints and surrounding soft tissue structures such as ligaments and tendons. There are many different conditions that are considered MSDs, but some common ones include tendinitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and bone fractures. Injuries can also lead to MSDs, such as ligament sprains and muscle strains.

Musculoskeletal Health Infographic

How MSDs impact the workplace

Musculoskeletal disorders are common, affecting one out of every two adults in the United States. MSDs can lead to high costs for employers due to employee absenteeism, lost productivity, increased health care, disability, and worker's compensation costs.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, MSDs are more serious than typical nonfatal injuries or illnesses. They consume the greatest number of sick days nationwide, with an average of ten days lost per worker — nearly 364 million days total.
Older workers are typically more susceptible to MSDs, especially back pain. This age group is more likely to be hospitalized and endure extended hospital stays due to MSDs.

MSDs are also major causes of the chronic pain epidemic and resulting opioid overuse, both of which continue the cycle of poor member outcomes and elevated health care costs.

Are MSDs inevitable?

Not necessarily. There are steps that can be taken to help minimize the risk and various options are available when it comes to treatment.

Preventing MSDs

According to the CDC, awkward positions, repetitive movements, and other motions can lead to MSDs. One way to help prevent musculoskeletal pain is to maintain strong bones and joints. Cleveland Clinic suggests that plan members can potentially avoid musculoskeletal pain if they:

  • Limit repetitive movements.
  • Use good posture.
  • Practice correct lifting techniques.
  • Stretch regularly.

Maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle also plays a vital role in preventing and managing MSDs. Lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise habits, stress levels, sleep health and mental health can all significantly impact musculoskeletal pain.

Treating MSDs

Many MSDs, particularly back and joint pain, improve with conservative, non-operative treatment.

A physician trained in non-operative specialty care can provide a comprehensive evaluation and diagnosis, rule out any emergencies and determine the right course of treatment.

As the causes of MSDs are often multifactorial, research shows that effective care encompasses more than just physical treatment. Holistic strategies, which address physical, mental, and behavioral facets of health are shown to be superior to reducing musculoskeletal pain compared to traditional care.

Whole-person care for MSD may include:

  • Personalized physical therapy including exercises to improve strength, conditioning, and flexibility.
  • Pain education.
  • Nutrition counseling.
  • Support for lifestyle changes (such as smoking cessation and healthy weight loss).
  • Stress reduction techniques.
  • Hot and cold therapy.
  • Non-opioid pain relievers.
Woman stretching at her computer desk.

Virtual Care through Vori Health can help combat MSDs

Vori Health is a specialty medical practice delivering a virtual-first musculoskeletal solution to help employees get back to their lives faster. As the only nationwide MSK practice with doctor-led care teams, Vori Health is the most convenient way to get employees the appropriate care at the right time.

Whether employees need a doctor-led diagnosis, non-opioid prescription, personalized physical therapy or health coaching, Vori Health's multispecialty teams work together to provide seamless support and effective, non-operative treatment. This holistic model reduces unnecessary surgeries, enables faster recoveries, and lowers health care spend with a positive ROI.

Vori Health is included in all Core Value products through the Allstate Benefits Self-Funded Program. With Allstate Benefits, plan members get access to Vori Health's services for all types of muscle and joint pain, plus treatment plans with exclusive pricing for back and knee conditions.

Vori Health's physician-led teams focus on the whole person. By addressing the biopsychosocial needs of members, we see greater adherence and higher member satisfaction.

Group health plans through Allstate Benefits

Allstate Benefits strives to help create high-quality group health benefit plans that make receiving health care simple and accessible.

That's why we've teamed up with Vori Health to offer our Core Value plan members access to convenient, evidenced-based musculoskeletal treatment options that boost outcomes and decrease costs.

Reach out to your Allstate Benefits — Group Health sales consultant for more information on options available with Vori Health.

The Self-Funded Program through Allstate Benefits provides tools for employers owning small to mid-sized businesses to establish a self-funded health benefit plan for their employees. The benefit plan is established by the employer and is not an insurance product. Allstate Benefits is a marketing name for: Integon National Insurance Company in CT, NY and VT; Integon Indemnity Corporation in FL; and National Health Insurance Company in CO, WA and all other states where offered. For employers in the Allstate Benefits Self-Funded Program, stop loss insurance is underwritten by these insurance companies in the noted states. National Health Insurance Company, Integon National Insurance Company, and Integon Indemnity Corporation are rated "A+" (Superior) by A.M. Best.

Related Articles:

Younger woman helping older woman in a chair lift.

Commonly Overlooked Accident Insurance Benefits

Doctor speaking with a patient

What Is Preventive Care and Do Health Plans Cover the Cost?

A woman practicing yoga

Cutting the Costs of Musculoskeletal Care

We are Allstate Benefits

From innovative group health coverage to our industry-leading portfolio of group supplemental insurance products, we have the experience, knowledge and service you need, and a name you know and trust.

Learn more about us

Allstate Benefits Logo.
Allstate Benefits Logo.

you're in good hands

ECC Monitor: OK