Working@Wellness Reno County Supports Healthy Workplace Policies

Date Published: 08/22/17 04:38:pm

Heal's Working@Wellness Reno County work group promotes wellness policies and practices in workplaces and provides support to employers, including the 13 organizations who have signed the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas Pathways to a Healthy Worksite pledge. This group will focus on physical activity, nutrition, and tobacco use in the workplace.

Representatives of Heal's advisory council and most of the Blue Cross Blue Shield “pledgers” recently participated in a grant-funded technical assistance workshop hosted by Wichita State Community Engagement Institute. Participants discussed Heal coalition’s long term vision for worksite wellness and then turned to short-term strategic planning for the Working@Wellness Reno County group.

Workshop participants’ vision is that in three to five years, organizations implementing wellness programs would see improvements at worksites such as increases in overall morale, productivity, and employee participation in wellness programs while also seeing decreases in tobacco use, absenteeism, chronic disease, and healthcare costs. The group agreed that one of the necessary elements to attain this vision is buy-in from the administration and management level at each organization. Support from management increases the likelihood of forward movement on other necessary factors such as a budget for the program, developing policies and incentives, and garnering employee support.

Working@Wellness Reno County Chairperson and WorkWell Reno County Wellness Coordinator, Scott Parker, shared his thoughts on the successes that Reno County is seeing as a result of their wellness program.

“Our wellness program has really made an impact not only on the health of our employees, but on our health insurance rates as well. We’re seeing employees being more proactive about their health and just being more fiscally responsible on how they approach their health care. The support of our commissioners and administrators really helps the culture of wellness in our organization. Without it, the health of the employees would suffer and our premiums would look a little different.”

Read more about the results the County is seeing in this Hutchinson News article.

Scott Parker, WorkWell Reno County Coordinator, will support employers making the leap toward healthier work environments by hosting and scheduling workshops necessary for the completion of the Pathways Worksite pledge and for any organization that would like to move toward a comprehensive wellness program. October 24th marks the Food and Beverage Workshop presented by Work Well KS from 1-5 p.m. at the United Methodist Health Ministries conference room. That workshop is specifically for the 13 organizations that have signed a pledge, but subsequent meetings focusing on topics such as Food at Work, Biometrics, Program Resources, Wellness Policies, the possibility of a community wellness portal, and Insurance Data (what can we learn from our insurance data/claims) would be opened to other organizations. Check the WorkWell Reno County page on Heal’s website for meeting dates and times.

If you have questions or would like to become involved, contact Working@Wellness Reno County Chairperson, Scott Parker.

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