246348 Workplace wellness initiatives and ways to increase participation

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 8:30 AM

Lisa Gable, President, Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation , Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, Washington, DC
1. INTRODUCTION The workplace is a pillar of the efforts of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF) – a coalition of companies and organizations committed to reducing obesity. HWCF asked the National Business Group on Health (NBGH) to evaluate the workplace wellness efforts of a cross-section of HWCF members – the first of three annual evaluations. 2. METHODS The NBGH developed an online tool that captured details of HWCF members' wellness programs, and conducted site visits to three participating companies, including tours of relevant facilities. 3. RESULTS Employers demonstrated a commitment to improving workforce health. A majority offered comprehensive wellness strategies – including nutritious cafeteria choices and workplace environments that encourage physical activity. On average at least 90% of employees have access to weight management programs and nutrition education, and over 80% have access to fitness programs and health assessments. Employers tracking yearly results reported single-digit percentage increases in employees having a healthy weight, engaging in physical activity, and eating nutritiously. But with the exception of health assessments and on-site fitness facilities, few programs attracted the participation of a quarter of employees. 4. DISCUSSION Companies building a wellness culture must look to the long term. The results show that wellness efforts yield results. By consistently building on their efforts – and sharing what they learn – companies can achieve further progress.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice

Learning Objectives:
Demonstrate which comprehensive wellness strategies are most successful with employees.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Lisa Gable is the executive director of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation. The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, a CEO-led organization, is a national, multi-year effort designed to help reduce obesity–especially childhood obesity–by 2015. It’s a first-of-its kind coalition that brings together more than 140 retailers, food and beverage manufacturers, restaurants, sporting goods and insurance companies, trade associations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and professional sports organizations. The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation promotes ways to help people achieve a healthy weight through energy balance–calories in and calories out. It focuses on three critical areas–the marketplace, the workplace and schools.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.