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Category: Worksite Wellness

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Data Brief on Trends in Employer-Sponsored Insurance

From the National Business Coalition on Health: Recent accounts of employers dropping health coverage, restricting eligibility for spouses, turning to plans with narrower networks and greater cost sharing, and restructuring workforces are often framed as side effects of the ACA.  But many of these cost-cutting trends began long before health reform. This data brief  and data charts from the National Institute of Health Care Management offers a comprehensive look at how... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, October 21, 2013

EEOC Asked to Investigate Personal Health Information Collected by Employers

From the National Business Coalition on Health: The New York Times reports that a federal lawmaker is asking the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to investigate employer wellness programs that seek detailed health information from employees, and to issue guidelines preventing employers from using such programs to discriminate against workers. The request, by Representative Louise M. Slaughter, Democrat of New York and a staunch advocate for health privacy rights, came a few days... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, October 14, 2013

Worksite Wellness Resource: Tekeela Green, Shelby County Health Department

Tekeela Green is the Public Health Coordinator for the Shelby County Health Department. Check out what she has to say to employers about worksite wellness and how she can help! Q: "Can you tell us a little about your interests and background in the field of Health Promotion?" A: "I was interested in public health/health promotion for personal reasons.  My family has a history of high blood pressure and diabetes.  Many of them take a lot of medicine, but are not changing... Read More
Posted by Tara Hill at Monday, September 30, 2013

Church Health Center: A Champion in Worksite Wellness

The Church Health Center signed on to MBGH’s CEO Culture of Health Initiative January 31st of this year and has been expanding upon their culture of health ever since. Lisa Carson, Director of Wellness, at the Church Health Center reported their program providing a wide variety of wellness activities, including: annual biometric screenings quarterly fitness assessments incentives for completing activity logs educational classes on topics such as nutrition,... Read More
Posted by Tara Hill at Thursday, September 26, 2013

Plan Worksite Activities for Food Day: October 24th

Memphis area employers and their employees have a great opportunity this month to get involved in support of Food Day: a national campaign for healthy, affordable, and sustainable food. Food Day is October 24th and employers are encouraged to get their companies involved! Food Day aims to help American's eat real. This means choosing fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and sustainably raised protein over sugar drinks, packaged foods and factory-farmed meats.This can be achieved at your own... Read More
Posted by Tara Hill at Monday, September 23, 2013

Only Modest Premium Increases Seen in 2013: Kaiser Family Foundation Employer Health Survey

The Kaiser Family Foundation's 2013 Employer Health Survey, released August 20, 2013, found that there were only modest increases for both single and family premiums in 2013. Annual premiums for employer-sponsored family health coverage reached $16,351 this year, up 4 percent from last year, with workers on average paying $4,565 toward the cost of their coverage. During the same period, workers' wages and general inflation were up 1.8 percent and 1.1 percent respectively. This year's rise in... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, August 21, 2013

New MBGH Staff Will Focus on Worksite Health & Wellness

Memphis Business Group on Health is pleased to announce that Tara Hill has joined our staff as Project Coordinator to assist our members in planning worksite health and wellness strategies, including early program implementation, and to coordinate MBGH's CEO Culture of Health initiative. Tara is available to provide assistance to MBGH members and employers who have signed on to the CEO Culture of Health initiative. As part of that assistance, she can: perform a brief worksite health... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Engaged Employees Exercise More, Eat Healthier

The Gallup Daily tracking interviews in 2012 showed that engaged employees eat healthier and exercise more than non-engaged employees or disengaged employees.  This is not the first connection Gallup research shows between employee engagement and health. Previous Gallup research shows that engaged employees: Are healthier overall with fewer chronic diseases and lower obesity rates Are 21% more likely to participate in worksite wellness programs Gallup points out that it is not... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, March 13, 2013

MBGH Awarded Grant to Expand National Diabetes Prevention Program in Tennessee

The National Business Coalition on Health (NBCH) announced that six member coalitions have been selected to receive $182,000 in funding of grants and stipends to increase awareness and lay the groundwork for coverage of the lifestyle change program that is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP). This initiative is a public-private partnership designed to bring to communities an evidence-based... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Trust for America's Health Calls for Worksite Wellness Programs for ALL Workers

From the National Business Coalition on Health: The non-profit Trust for America's Health is calling for a revamp of public health management at the federal, state and local levels in a report that urges a greater focus on preventive care.The report, called "A Healthier America 2013: Strategies to Move from Sick Care to Health Care in the Next Four Years" argues that the different agencies in HHS involved with preventive healthcare should work more closely together to coordinate efforts,... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Workers Recognize Rewards of Workplace Wellness Programs

From the National Business Coalition on Health: More American workers recognize the rewards of participating in workplace wellness programs, according to the latest survey from Principal Financia l. Sixty-two percent of workers, up from 55% in 2011, believe workplace wellness activities are successful in improving health and reducing health risks. In addition, 51% of respondents feel wellness benefits encourage them to work harder and perform better, and another 59% of program... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Employees Get the Flu Vaccine For Economic Reasons

From the National Business Coalition on Health: A study presented on October 29, 2012 at the American Public Health Association annual meeting in San Francisco and recently published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that influenza-like illness took a significant toll on employee health and productivity during a recent influenza season. A new employer-sponsored influenza immunization program that was developed for this study was effective at engaging both... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, November 28, 2012

HHS Releases Proposed Regulation on Incentives for Nondiscriminatory Wellness Programs

Helpful links to understand the specifics of this proposed rule: Health Affairs Blog: Kaiser Health News coverage of all 3 proposed rules: Coverage on all 3 of the proposed rules from across the nation at ... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, November 21, 2012

MBGH Launches Culture of Health Initiative

MBGH recently launched an initiative to encourage and assist Memphis-area employers in creating cultures of health within their organizations. This initiative is in support of Healthy Shelby (the most recent initiative of Memphis Fast Forward focused on better health, better care and lower costs as strategies for economic vitality). MBGH is working closely with Memphis Tomorrow, the association of chief executive officers of Memphis’ largest enterprises, to build CEO adoption and spread the... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, November 15, 2012

Employers Use Scoring Models as Part of Wellness Plans

From the National Business Coalition on Health: According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, the future of employee wellness programs may be an individual health score, much like a consumer has a credit score. Allina Health of Minneapolis is among a growing number of employers using employee health scoring models, such as myHealthCheck and HealthCheck360°. The programs work by rating each employee based on health screening data. At Allina, employees who score high on myHealthCheck can get up... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, November 3, 2012

New MBGH Member Benefit: Resolve Health Challenges with Other Employers Who Understand

Join us January 30, 2013 8:30-10:30 for our first meeting! Open to MBGH members and affiliates only. Register by email to . You know other businesses face the same employee health and health benefit challenges as you. Instead of reinventing the wheel by yourself the next time one of these challenges arise, imagine being able to work collaboratively with these other businesses to arrive at creative solutions much more quickly. MBGH makes that... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Check Out MBGH's Worksite Wellness Web Page!

Did you know that working adults comprise 65% of the population ages 16+ in the US? Did you realize that workers spend at least 50% of their waking hours at the worksite? Is it any surprise then, that where we work can help promote and support our health? The key word is can. Where we work won't have this positive impact if employers don't take deliberate steps to create a culture of health at the worksite by adopting policies and providing environmental and social supports to promote... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Working to Get the CDC's Diabetes Prevention Program to Memphis!

As those of you that attended our September 6, 2012 Annual Conference know, MBGH is working through the National Business Coalition on Health and the CDC to get the CDC's National Diabetes Prevention Program to Memphis! This evidence-based, small-group setting, lifestyle coaching program is geared toward pre-diabetics, to help them not develop full-blown Type 2 diabetes. We know that generally, there are about 2.5 times as many pre-diabetics in the US as diabetics and the only way to slow... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Friday, September 21, 2012

Poor Health Costs Employers $227 Billion in Lost Productivity

Take the MBGH Brief Worksite Health Assessment to see if you have the evidence-based policies, environmental and social supports in place to work in conjunction with your health benefit to increase the health and productivity of your employees! All participants in the survey will receive a report summarizing major findings so you can use it to benchmark your worksite programs with other employers across Memphis.Then read how poor health impacts your bottom line! From the National... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Hospitals as Employers Using Wellness Programs Find Benefits Beyond a Healthy Workforce

From the National Business Coalition on Health: Hospitals are emphasizing employee health, in part to give them credibility when they pitch wellness programs to other companies. Hospital executives increasingly agree that employee wellness programs show a hospital can manage population health and can help the facility stand out as an employer in competitive markets. According to Becker's Hospital Review , employee health management is an opportunity for hospitals to put their money where... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Employers Turn to Biometric Data To Manage Costs

From the National Business Coalition on Health: As employers continue to use wellness programs to improve employee behavior and their health, many are taking advantage of benefits automation tools; however, they also have not reached the potential for cost savings and operational efficiency, according to the 2012 Wellness & Benefits Administration Benchmarking Study by bswift. “Employers are actively modifying and upgrading their wellness programs as they learn from experience,... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, August 23, 2012

Leading Health Groups Outline Guidance on Outcomes Based Incentives in Wellness Programs

From the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine Tuesday, July 17, 2012 Industry collaboration produces guidance for the use of outcomes-based incentives in employer-sponsored workplace wellness programs  A forward-thinking new initiative by a group of leading health care organizations has produced the industry’s most consensus-driven guidance for the use of outcomes-based incentives in employer-sponsored wellness (or health... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, August 13, 2012

Survey Finds Wellness Strategies Gaining Traction as Way to Curb Health Cost Increases

From the National Business Coalition on Health: Global costs for employee health benefits are expected to increase this year, but wellness programs are gaining traction as a way to keep people healthier and lower long-term costs, according to the  2012 Towers Watson Global Medical Trends Survey  of insurers. Towers Watson officials say the rate of cost increases is slowing and 29% of insurers reported using wellness programs as one way to control costs. While traditional cost... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, July 28, 2012

Register Now for "Making the Case for Worksite Health, Leadership and Culture" Webinar

Register for the CDC's National Healthy Worksite Program  Implementation Training Webinar on June 18, 2012, 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm CT. This webinar entitled "Making the Case for Worksite Health, Leadership and Culture"  features speaker William B. Baun, EPD, CWP, FAWHP, Wellness Officer of the MD Anderson Cancer Center and President of the National Wellness Institute. This first in the series of five trainings provided by the CDC will discuss: The key components of a worksite... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, May 17, 2012

New, More User-Friendly Health Reform Website from American Benefits Council

From the National Business Coalition on Health: The American Benefits Council, an important strategic partner of NBCH, has announced its new, more user-friendly website. The Health Care Reform issue page is now divided into its component pages, covering the wide variety of health reform issues addressed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). These individual topics are: § Employer Shared Responsibility § Market Reforms & Adult Child/Age-26 Coverage §... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Friday, May 4, 2012

National Healthy Worksite Program Kicking Off in Memphis in May!

UPDATE: FIRST TRAINING ANNOUNCED Register NOW to attend the June 6 "Healthy Worksite 101" training provided by the National Healthy Worksite Program here in Memphis. The topic is "Making the Business Case for Worksite Wellness" . Space is filling up fast. RSVP with Mary Cay Oyler at Any employer in the greater Memphis area is invited to trainings and you do not have to be one of the selected program participants to attend! Overview As the CDC's National... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Friday, April 20, 2012

Disturbing Anti-Smoking Ads Convince Thousands to Quit

"(RNN) - Calls to a national stop-smoking line doubled and traffic to the government's anti-smoking website tripled after a hard-hitting TV advertising campaign seems to have convinced many Americans to quit the deadly habit. The Tips from Former Smokers ad campaign was launched by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Office on Smoking and Health on March 19. The commercials profile former smokers and others who have been affected by second-hand smoking. The... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, April 7, 2012

Are You Meeting Your Obligations to Nursing Mothers?

One of the highlights of MBGH's "Believe in a Healthy Memphis: the 2011 Let's CHANGE Summit" held last July in collaboration with the Healthy Memphis Common Table, the Shelby County Health Department, and Shelby County Mayor Luttrell's office, was the decision to encourage breastfeeding friendly practices in all area birth hospitals. The Shelby County Breastfeeding Coalition is taking the lead on this important initiative. Clearly the hospital and its staff play a significant role in... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Shelby County Selected for CDC's National Healthy Worksite Initiative

On Friday, January 13, 2012, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that Shelby County was one of 7 sites nationally selected for their National Healthy Worksite Initiative. Viridian Health Management, based in Phoenix, AZ, is implementing this initiative in all 7 sites . MBGH is working with CDC and Viridian to identify interested employers in Shelby County and we hope that several of our members will apply! As a selected site, 15 employers from Shelby County will... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, January 16, 2012

TN Plans Encouraged to Give "Good Driver Discounts"

Proposed recommendations for the Tennessee Health Insurance Exchange encourage health plans and employers to establish expectations about personal responsibility and engagement through benefit designs in the Exchange.   The wellness program could provide some sort of "good driver discount" in the form of a lower premium or other incentives to those enrollees who satisfy these standards. Having the exchange plans offer these incentives will make it easier for larger employers too!... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, December 12, 2011

Take Steps to Offer Healthy Options in the Workplace

In July of this year, MBGH sponsored the “Believe in a Healthy Memphis: 2011 Let’s CHANGE Summit” in collaboration with the Shelby County Health Department and Healthy Memphis Common Table. Ham Smythe, President of Yellow Cab and Checker Cab, was an active participant in the  “Where We Work” group, which detailed the options employers could explore to stimulate healthy lifestyles in employees. This was not the first time Smythe had explored the options he had to encourage healthy... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, October 31, 2011

If I were King....

If I were King, and could wave my magic wand, my three wishes would be (ooops, I think I am mixing metaphors, oh well): Engage my employees as partners with me in the quality and cost of their health benefits. I would Implement a benefit design similar to the State of Tennessee , offering lower payroll deduction for premium co-shares, lower deductibles, lower co-pays, and lower co-insurance in exchange for employees and their families taking an HRA, getting their biometrics, and agreeing... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Friday, September 23, 2011

On-site Medical Clinics Continue to Interest Employers

Embracing the belief that providing on-site medical care can keep employees healthy and productive and save money, more and more employers are opening their own state-of-the-art health centers. Mercer reports that, nationally, 15% of employers with more than 500 employees have health centers, up 4 percentage points from last year. The larger the employer the more likely they are to have on-site centers. These centers are moving beyond urgent, now offering preventive services, such as... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Employers Take Note: Sitting is Bad For Your Employees & Your Business!

Recent research indicates that "sitting can be lethal". With the increase of "knowledge workers" who are tied to their desks on the phone, webinars, computer and in long conference room meetings, employers should start thinking about how to keep these employees active throughout the day, improving employee effectiveness. Here are a couple of articles from offering suggestions on how to get your employees up and moving while they are doing their jobs and on how to establish a wellness... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, June 2, 2011

What work place policy change would you support to improve health?

51% of those responding to MBGH's informal Facebook poll on what work place policy change they would support to improve health voted for "no tobacco use on property". This is exciting news as decreasing the number of tobacco users is a high priority to improve the overall health of Tennesseans and the nation! Recent legislation that banned or restricted smoking in the work place has gone a long way in improving the health of your workforce by eliminating second hand smoke and encouraging... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Dow Chemical Maps Connection of Employee Health to Company Success

In the first of a two-part interview with Dr. Cathy Baase, Global Director of Health Services for Dow Chemical, The Benfield Group's article outlines the key philosophy and approaches Dow has taken over the past 20 years to increase value to Dow by improving employee health. Central to Dow's approach is their map which focuses on employee effectiveness and illness/injury management.   As you can see, the common element between employee effectiveness and illness/injury management... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, May 31, 2011

MBGH Launches New Health Promotions Benefits Tool & Solutions Center

Our members said they wanted it, and we listened. In the most recent MBGH user survey, worksite health promotion ranked number one as the most important learning topic. That’s why MBGH created a new Tools & Solutions Center dedicated to Health Promotion Benefits.The center is available to MBGH members, affiliates and conference sponsors at the Patron and Partner level. Your login is your email address and the password is  mbgh  . This center includes information from the... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, May 16, 2011

Rhodes College Builds A Sense of Community Through Wellness Programs

Martha McGeachy (shown on her bike), Benefit Services Manager at Rhodes College, gets to the bottom line quickly about why Rhodes has ramped up their health and wellness programs, "We think these programs serve the College and our employees by raising awareness of healthy lifestyles and building a sense of community.  The benefit to our health plan is more long-term, but with diligence and patience we believe we will see good results." And, Rhodes, an MBGH member since 1990, ... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, April 9, 2011

Competitive Advantage Drives First Horizon to Invest in Health

Why does MBGH member First Horizon invest so heavily in the health of their employees? CEO Bryan Jordan puts it this way, "Our employees are our competitive advantage so we invest in programs designed to encourage them and their family members to lead healthy lifestyles, and they've responded enthusiastically," As you will see, First Horizon has implemented a comprehensive program to support this belief. On July 4 last year, the company declared its independence from tobacco and... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, April 9, 2011

Congratulations to Healthiest Employers Award Winners

MBGH Salutes Winners of the Memphis Business Journal’s Mid-South’s Healthiest Employers Awards Adams and Reese (1-99 employees) was recognized for a combination of health initiatives, including discounted gym memberships and a cash incentive weight loss program. Ring Container Technologies (100-499 employees) earned the award for creating a culture that included personal health coaches for all employees and walking meetings at the company’s on-site walking track. ... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, April 9, 2011

Are Memphis Employers Kinder & Gentler?

Are Memphis Employers Kinder and Gentler Than Their National Counterparts?   MBGH decided to find out. We separated out the responses of Tennessee employers to a national survey of employers and then compared them to national responses.  Most of the Tennessee respondents were from Memphis, giving us insight into what Memphis employers are thinking and doing! And, it's surprisingly different. Take a quick look at these easy-to-read findings. Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Sunday, March 20, 2011

MBGH to Moderate Mid-South's Healthiest Employers Panel

Cristie Upshaw Travis, CEO of Memphis Business Group on Health, will moderate a panel discussion on health issues that affect the workplace after the awards breakfast for the Mid-South's Healthiest Employers on Friday, March 25, 2011. The Mid-South's Healthiest Employers awards are presented by the Memphis Business Journal, partnered with The Church Health Center, and sponsored by CIGNA, the Y, and Methodist Healthcare. The awards breakfast will recognize local, Memphis-area employers for... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, February 14, 2011

MBGH Reports on MBGH & Shelby County Health Department Project to Improve Health of Employees

MBGH Reports summarizes the MBGH & Shelby County Health Department (SCHD) project collaboration to improve the health of employees by conducting the SCHD health promotion program at Memphis employer worksites. In addition to a project summary, the report presents major findings and recommendations to help the program be relevant, effective and marketable to the employer community. All MBGH employers would offer the program to their employees again and employees gave the program high... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Healthy People 2020 Sets Agressive Goals for Health Improvement

On December 2, 2010, HHS released "Healthy People 2020", updating goals and objectives for improving the health of our nation over the next decade (replaces Healthy People 2010). Visit the Healthy People 2020 website for details. Overarching goals include: Attain high-quality, longer lives free of preventable disease, disability, injury, and premature death Achieve health equity, eliminate disparities, and improve the health of all groups. Create social and physical... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Saturday, December 4, 2010

Final GINA Regulations Released

Read the Employee Benefit News article regarding final GINA requlations issues November 9, 2010. Get  a copy of the Federal Register for GINA regulations. According to Employee Benefit News, "GINA and its new implementing regulations:  • Prohibit the use of genetic information in employment decisions, including those concerning hiring, firing, compensation, and terms and conditions of employment; • Generally bar employers from requesting, requiring, or purchasing genetic... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Sentara Healthcare Saves $3.4 Million & Improves Employee Health

A 3-year, incentive-based wellness program for the employees of Sentara Healthcare had a 6:1 return on investment, saved approximately $3.4 million in healthcare costs, and resulted in health improvement for nearly 80% of the employees that participated in the program. Major program components included: Completion of a voluntary personal health profile to identify risk factors Employees with low risk factors were awarded a $500 annual premium reduction Employees with... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, October 20, 2010

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