Employee Benefit News: Views Based on empathy, grounded in science. The essential role of health coaches

By Dana Medlin

Behavior change isn’t easy. Dealing with stress, making healthy food choices, getting enough exercise — I don’t know anyone who doesn’t struggle with at least one of these issues. People don’t give up from a lack of desire to change, but rather, because they approach behavior change alone and in ways that aren’t productive or that don’t lead to lasting results.

That’s why I became a health coach — to offer patients reinforcement, hope, and trust. With evidence-based interventions and rigorous training, coaches are uniquely qualified to support patients on their healthcare journey, helping them change behaviors so that they can live healthier lives. 

As health and wellness become increasingly accessible to the average adult through digital health, many healthcare startups are relying on health coaches as an integral part of the virtual care team. They act as an indispensable human link between the patient and the software, healing the body and mind in ways that augment technology and ensure its success through personal connections and proven interventions.