A new policy at the popular pharmacy chain CVS is causing outrage after the company announced it will require its employees to report their weight, BMI, and glucose levels – or pay a hefty fine. CVS Caremark, which is based in Rhode Island, has some 200,000 employees.
The controversial new policy would require workers to sign a waiver that they ‘voluntarily’ disclosed the information, but those who opt out must pay a $600 fee. Patient advocate groups say this is just another coercive measure and worry that those employees in poorer health might risk getting fired.
The company mandated that all of its employees must get the screenings, which include their height, weight, body mass index, blood pressure levels, and glucose levels, by May 1, according to the Boston Herald.
CVS added that they will cover the cost of these screenings. But that comes at a price – those who have their tests covered by the company are required to sign a waiver saying the screenings were voluntary. If workers refuse to sign up, they will be charged an extra $50 a month, or $600 a year.
However, the policy has been called ‘technology-enhanced discrimination’ by Dr Deborah Peel, the founder of Patient Privacy Rights.
She told ABC News that the policy insinuates that workers need to be penalized in order to get into shape. ‘The approach they’re taking is based on the assumption that somehow these people need a whip,’ she said. ‘How is it voluntary if you are a low or medium-wage person?’ she told the Herald.