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ONU's ‘Healthy Campus’ program recognized

Dec 18, 2012

Ohio Northern University’s multidisciplinary “Healthy Campus” wellness program has produced a more healthy campus, and its results are being nationally recognized.

ONU’s Healthy Campus initiative is a joint effort between the ONU Office of Human Resources and ONU HealthWise, which presented their results at the American Public Health Association meeting in October.

Two articles have been published about the program. “Employees Attitudes Towards Participation in a Work Site-based Health and Wellness Clinic” was published in October by the Journal of Pharmacy Practice, and “Design and Implementation of a Pharmacist-directed Preventive Care Program” was published in September by the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy.

Kate Colwell, benefits and payroll manager, and Michael Rush, director of ONU HealthWise, began the process of developing the incentive program in 2011. They formed a committee that reviewed local best practices in the area of preventive health and worksite wellness. The committee visited many worksite clinics at other business and colleges and spoke with their human resources professionals regarding employee incentive programs.

“With the cost of health care on the rise, many employers are investing more in preventive health and wellness,” said Rush. “Worksite clinics, such as HealthWise, combined with incentive programs, such as the Healthy Campus Initiative, are becoming popular options.”

Utilizing the information gathered from visiting local best practices, the team developed a two-phase plan, offering incentives for good health and wellness activities. The first phase involved implementing an annual wellness appointment to discuss the participant’s current health. The second phase introduced a graduated-points system that allows members to earn points through a host of on- and off-campus activities that were integrated into the ONU HealthWise program.

More than half of ONU’s employees completed lab screenings and follow-up visits with their physician or HealthWise clinician, and 58 percent of ONU employees participated in the graduated-points system. In addition, the health screenings discovered 83 previously undiagnosed conditions that required treatment.

The program showed early success, and the team is working to expand the point system and focus on nutrition components for 2013.

“The HealthWise team is honored to have the opportunity to work with the employees of Ohio Northern,” Rush said. “The initial success of the Healthy Campus program is encouraging, and we look forward to our continued service to the ONU family.”

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