Viridian Health Management Provides Best Practices for Employers to Strategically Advance Workplace Wellness at the Indiana Employee Health and Wellness Summit

Top Quote Over 30% of Indiana residents are considered to be obese, making it one of the most obese U.S. states. Ed Pienkosz, Viridian's director for Indiana's Healthy Worksite Program shares strategies to improve employee health and lower healthcare costs. End Quote
  • Phoenix-Mesa, AZ (1888PressRelease) September 27, 2012 - Where we live and work and how we live life matters to our health. Many organizations are beginning to view worksite health programs as a long‐term sustainability strategy and as an investment designed to help employees adopt healthier lifestyles and as a healthcare cost-control strategy.

    Representatives of Viridian Health Management, an integrative healthcare services provider focused on improving individual and population health through comprehensive health management programs, will be speaking and exhibiting at the Indiana Employee Health and Wellness Summit in Indianapolis on September 26‒27, 2012.

    Two of the leading national experts in the field of public health and health promotion-Ed Pienkosz, Viridian's community director for Indiana's Marion County Healthy Worksite Program and Chuck Gillespie, program director of the Wellness Council of Indiana-will share strategies for organizations to improve employee health and ensure that their worksite health initiatives have the greatest opportunity for success. Visit Booth 28 to learn how Viridian can improve employee health and enter for a chance to win a Kindle Fire.

    "Employers are proactively seeking ways to make healthy choices the easiest choices for their employees," said Pienkosz. "By implementing comprehensive worksite health programs, employers can drive sustainable behavior change, and in turn, reduce employee risk for obesity, heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes."

    A recent study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently mapped out the percentage of overweight Americans by state, highlighting 12 states that now have very high obesity rates among its adult residents.1 In fact, 30.8 percent of Indiana residents were considered to be obese in 2011, making it one of the most obese U.S. states.2 Marion County, which includes the state capital of Indianapolis, ranks 85 out of Indiana's 92 counties in health factors. Marion County's 26-percent tobacco-use rate is more than 10 percent higher than the national average. In addition, 26 percent of individuals are physically inactive, putting Marion County's rate of adult obesity at 30 percent.3

    Viridian Health Management shares the following best practices to help employers strategically advance workplace wellness and create a culture of health:

    Secure Leadership Support. Active engagement from leadership at all levels of the organization is important for the success of any worksite health program. Do not overlook the importance of mid-level managers, as they can also be a catalyst for change by helping to break any barriers to employee participation or bridge the gap between senior leadership and employees for increased employee engagement.

    Create a Worksite Health Program Infrastructure That Works for You. The infrastructure can include champions and a worksite health committee, depending on the size of your organization. The worksite health committee is an employee-driven committee that helps to build and sustain health and safety programming and a culture of health across the organization. Begin by identifying a worksite health champion and if your organization is large enough to support one, a program coordinator within your organization. If your organization is large enough, create a worksite health committee and be sure to include representation from all areas and levels of the company to provide a balanced team and to ensure that all areas of the organization have a voice.

    Design Your Plan. Before you can implement a plan and expect any real changes, you first must take the time to identify your needs and to develop a program plan specific to your organization's and employees' needs. Other decisions that must be determined beforehand include: how you will support employee desires to change their behaviors; what goal(s) you want to reach; and if and how your organization will utilize community resources to support your worksite health programming and interventions.

    Communicate, Communicate, Communicate. Use multiple channels of communication to reach all levels of the organization's employee population, including printed, electronic and verbal departmental or divisional meetings. Be cognizant that all materials and messages are culturally competent, relevant and at a health literacy level appropriate for your employees.

    Plan Ahead for Year Two and Three of the Program. Determine what programs and interventions can be added to your year-two and year-three program plans. Some programming and interventions will be repeated and enhanced, others may be changed or dropped. After the successful launch of your program, begin the discussion of your year-two plan. Do not let time catch you off guard.

    Organizations can help their employees make healthy decisions. By implementing comprehensive worksite health programs, employers can empower their dedicated workers with the knowledge, skills and attitudes they need to make wise health care decisions and live healthier, happier lives, help control health-care spending driven largely by chronic diseases, and improve productivity that contributes to the overall competitiveness and success of any company.

    About Viridian Health Management
    Viridian is a healthcare improvement company focused on improving individual and population health through its pioneering health coaching techniques, integrative approach to employee health, powerful technology platform and actionable analytics. Its comprehensive health management solutions combine evidence-based and emerging best practices for worksites, communities, the public sector and healthcare partners. Viridian focuses on engaging individuals to make healthy behavior changes that result in better health outcomes and financial savings. To learn more, visit online at, email info ( @ ) viridianhealth dot com or call 877-486-0140 dot

    1, 2 County Health Rankings & Roadmaps,

    Viridian Health Management Media Contact:
    Jill Brownley, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
    jbrownley ( @ ) viridianhealth dot com
    602-544-4880 office | 602-509.4311 cell

    22601 N. 19th Avenue
    Suite 240
    Phoenix, AZ 85027

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