This page is loaded with WV specific community resources and best examples on how you can make healthy changes in worksites.
Workplace Wellness – Why Do We Care?
- The WV Plan to Combat Obesity and Reduce Related Chronic Disease details the burden, health goals, and proven strategies to reduce obesity and improve health indicators.
- West Virginia has one of the highest adult obesity prevalence rates nationally, with 37.7% of West Virginia adults who are obese (2016). Try This WV is doing something about this through proven strategies in community settings and in worksites.
- Since most full-time working adults spend a majority of their time at work, effective workplace programs and policies can help reduce obesity and improve chronic disease outcomes.
- “One major driver in the focus on chronic disease prevention and wellness is economic. Simply put, healthy people cost less to employ and are more productive. Thus, employers are becoming increasingly interested in promoting health in their workforces, through both formal workplace programs and organizational cultural change.” John Yauch, WV Department of Health and Human Resources, Workplace Physical Activity Policies in West Virginia Report.
- According to Center for Disease Control (CDC) workplace wellness programs can:
- Improve healthy behaviors, increase physical activity and encourage healthy eating.
- Improve workers’ health knowledge and skills.
- Create a culture of healthier behaviors at work.
- A study showed these programs increased employee retention, attendance, productivity, improved employees’ quality of life.
- Obesity and related chronic disease cost money, impacts health cost to employers and employees.
- A 2010 medical survey conducted revealed the U.S. spends over $1 trillion a year on medical cost and 86% of the cost is associated with heart disease, stroke, cancer, arthritis, diabetes or obesity.
- According to CDC U.S spends $225 billion annually on personal and family health problems including indirect cost to absenteeism, poor, health, disability.
All these reasons provide more than enough justification for addressing wellness where people work to improve health. Together we can continue to address obesity and chronic related disease, and get WV off the worst health list by using proven workplace strategies!
West Virginias Worksites Rocking at Wellness
There are many WV organizations who are partnering to improve workplace wellness–including Try This Mini-Grant Recipients.
NRG (Sounds like energy) Nutrition Resources and Goodies
- KISRA increased CDC Worksite Health Score Card.
- Staff that said they enjoyed the AHA Mobile Kitchen Cooking Classes and showed excitement after cooking delicious healthy meals with less sodium & learning how to monitor BP. The cooking class was featured in local news.
- 30% said they appreciated for the Lunch & Learn topics (i.e. Walking Groups, Know Your Numbers & Portion Control) and information provided that gave them knowledge on wellness.
- KISRA developed and shared healthy meeting food and beverage pledge
- 70% of employees participated in the NRG workplace program.
- 50% of employees participated in Check.Change.Control.
- 60% of employees participated in campaign log (includes numbers of steps).
- 50% of employees participated in the health fair.
- Developed a workplace wellness “how to guide” based on best practices and lessons learned that employers can use to improve employee health.
Active Southern WV Workplace Wellness Physical Activity Project (Fayette, Raleigh, Nicholas, Summers)
- Adopted CDC’s assess, plan, implement, and evaluate workplace framework and physical activity strategy.
- Convened key physical activity stakeholders.
- Developed physical activity survey and 21 Free motivational physical activity posters which are free to download online for display in key settings to promote physical activity where individuals eat, live, work, play, and pray.
- Developed an online “how-to” physical activity social media toolkit and informational presentation at Try This Conference 2018.
How you can create and do workplace wellness on a shoestring budget?
Additionally, there are many worksites both big and small, who are eager to start and or expand their existing program! Your organization isn’t alone.
The Division of Health Promotion and Chronic Disease well@work WV Healthy Worksite Initiative has outlined simple proven method steps to help you get started. The divisions utilizes the CDC Workplace Health Model and CDC Workplace Resource Center, additional resources for implementing effective workplace wellness strategies.
Here’s how you can do it too in five easy steps:
- Review: familiarize yourself with well@work WV resource section and Workplace Health Program Definition and Description.
- Assess: Complete and submit organizational assessment–CDC Worksite Health ScoreCard (HSC) paper or online.
- Plan: Develop a Health Improvement Plan with at least one SMART objective based on CDC HSC results.
- Implement: Use the well@work WV implementation guide to take action and Try This Set A Good Example Contract. If you are not sure where to start, consider physical activity and nutrition strategies.
- Evaluate and celebrate:share challenges, opportunities and success. (Repeat steps 2-5 annually)
Feeling good about wellness? Apply for workplace wellness recognition.
What you can do?
Set a good example. At Try This we have implemented some innovative, informative and always fun workplace wellness practices not only for our staff, but also for those who visit.
- Our cuckoo clock in the office is set to go off every 30 minutes, no matter where you are, what your doing, or who is there, everyone gets up and moves and stretches. This gets the blood circulating, gets your heart rate up, and is always a good time watching everyone run around the office.
- We have signs up around the office motivating staff to be active and reminders and tips to stay healthy.
- Post recipes up in lunch/break rooms with examples of healthy food and snack alternatives. Have pot lucks on special occasions or for big meetings where everyone brings a healthy dish and swaps recipes.
- During cooler months at the office, Try This hosts a Yoga hour for lunch. Let people from the community or other business join in for even more fun. We chose to offer it FREE for staff and charge $5 for anyone in the community to participate.
Want even more information on how to improve workplace wellness? Here are some helpful links:
- American Heart Association – Check. Change. Control Program:
- Food and Bev Toolkit:
- Physical Activity Campaigns: Go4Life
- National Diabetes Prevention Program
- American Diabetes Association – Stop Diabetes @ Work
- well@work WV Healthy Worksite Initiative
- wellness Ideas and Tips to get you started
- Want 121 Employee Wellness Program Ideas Your Team Will Love? Download the PDF here
- And here are 10 more Wellness Program Ideas for Small Businesses
- Sodium Reduction Resources for Worksites
- WV Division for Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Health Policy Library
- WV Health Connection
Also see these related Try This pages:
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