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The Metropolitan YMCA of Mississippi is a well-known, locally operated fitness and child care facility, also providing youth sports and after school and summer programs in 13 Mississippi counties. The organization is known as a leader and positive example of physical activity and well-being in the state of Mississippi.
As a community leader in health and wellness, the Group decided to extend the same standards and values to their employees by becoming a Healthy Workplace with Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi. With staff knowledgeable in all areas of wellness, the Group found that their employees were not taking time to work on their own health maintenance and prevention. The Group wanted to utilize resources that were currently available to them and saw that it was important to increase utilization of the Healthy You! benefit, which supports health maintenance and prevention. The Group's Wellness Coordinator was very interested in moving employees to participate and engage in what was offered by the worksite, which was a challenge for the Group as well as the employees.
In May of 2009, the Group signed a Letter of Understanding with Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi with the goal of becoming a Healthy Workplace. The Group then offered a Health Risk Assessment (HRA) and paired it with a health screening to capture height, weight, blood pressure, total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and glucose. The assessment and health screenings were offered to all covered employees. Once data was compiled, the Group was able to see the top health needs and interests of the employees, in aggregate form. Activities were designed based on the needs and interests and then promoted by the Wellness Coordinator at the Group. In years two, three and four, they repeated the HRA, but decided to encourage the employees to obtain their biometric/health data at their Healthy You! visit. With year one not producing successful participation with activities offered, for year two they decided to tie participation to their benefit structure, paying more toward benefit cost if the employee was to obtain their Healthy You!, complete the HRA and participate in two exercise sessions per week for 30 minutes. The incentive was also revisited for year three and updated to include HRA completion, receipt of Healthy You! visit, participating in a written exercise prescription program, and a signed commitment to make a goal of a healthier lifestyle.The Results
With the introduction of the "Incentive Plan," the Group has seen an increase in overall Healthy You! utilization and wellness engagement. The Group's goal at the onset of initiating worksite wellness was to increase awareness and utilization of Healthy You!. In 2009, their utilization stood at 20% and increased to 88% in 2012, and has continued to increase for 2013. HRA participation has also been outstanding as shown below. Other successes are seen in submitted biometric data. Below depicts results from 2009 as compared to results in 2012.