Online Program

Innovative Opportunities to Achieve Workplace Wellness Under the Affordable Care Act

Tuesday, November 3, 2015: 2:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
INTRODUCTION: In recent years rising health care costs, health insurance premium inflation, productivity losses, and the proliferation of obesity-related health maladies have prompted employers to invest in implementing cost-effective, sustainable worksite wellness programs. Programs designed to encourage the use of preventive health services, improve healthy eating behaviors and promote physical activity among the workforce have gained considerable traction. New provisions under The Affordable Care Act (ACA) have presented viable opportunities and salient incentives for organizations to invest in cultural norm changes to reintegrate healthy eating and physical activity into the workplace. However, the uptake of evidence-based, rigorously evaluated worksite wellness programming has lagged. Further, there is concern over the effectiveness of prevalent worksite wellness models in eliciting measurable, sustainable impacts on individual health behaviors and health outcomes. The purpose of this workshop is to elucidate and contextualize the most salient worksite wellness-related provisions in the Affordable Care Act. In addition, findings and lessons learned from the implementation of an innovative physical activity promotion strategy, Instant Recess, will be explored across three diverse organizational settings. METHODS: A brief systematic literature review and policy scan was conducted to identify and interpret worksite wellness provisions in the ACA. Case studies developed from process and outcome evaluations of Instant Recess implementation across 3 settings (health services organization, school, faith-based) will be presented to explore successes, challenges, and lessons learned. An evidence-based physical activity strategy will be demonstrated in order to underscore potential organizational challenges and provide recommendations. RESULTS: Numerous ACA provisions were identified. Factors associated with successful implementation included the support and active engagement of leaders; workplace receptivity to norm change; leveraging existing assets and resources; presence of peer champions; formal and informal policy change; innovation and creativity; and persistence amidst challenges. DISCUSSION: Employers can identify ways to maximize the benefit they receive from implementing workplace health promotion and prevention programs. The presentation will highlight the feasibility and packaging of low-cost workplace wellness strategies for improving employee health.
Session Objectives: Identify innovative and relevant workplace wellness strategies that can be implemented within organizations interested in improving employee health. Describe the type workplace health promotion and prevention activities covered under the Affordable.
Chikarlo Leak, DrPH, MPH

Exploration of wellness programs across multiple sectors   

Melicia C. Whitt-Glover, Ph.D.
Workplace Wellness & the Affordable Care Act   

Jammie Hopkins, DrPH, MS

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: APHA

CE Credits: Medical (CME), Health Education (CHES), Nursing (CNE), Public Health (CPH)

See more of: APHA