Worksite Health Promotion Program
Worksite Health Promotion Programs: Key Components
Incorporating all the health risks present in the employee population is the only effective method of building a successful worksite health promotion program.
No program can improve employee wellbeing if it is designed to target only a few isolated health risks. Wellness programs cannot improve the health of employees whose illnesses are not addressed by the health promotion objectives in the program.
Screening the entire group to determine the health risks around which the worksite health promotion program will be designed is the foundation of every successful wellness plan.
Gentle persuasion and voluntary involvement will encourage continuous employee participation. To optimize wellness program potential, it should have a range of health solutions that can encompass individual preferences and needs.
Good health promotion program initiatives permeate the corporate environment as well as the laborers within it. To give the wellness program constant forward momentum, efforts to improve health should be rewarded and supported with evaluation and follow-up for as long as the employees remain with the company.
The most successful worksite health promotion programs are based on:
- Applied Assessment – Effective assessment means gathering data to build a useful profile of employee health risks.
- Applied Strategy – A strategic plan commences with the establishment of a wellness committee. Isolating criteria for wellness program selection, choosing wellness goals and objectives, ensuring that there is a procedure for maintaining the privacy of employee information and the planning of internal health promotion are some of the groundbreaking tasks the wellness committee can accomplish to initiate the new wellness program.
- Implementation – This phase of workplace health promotion construction occurs when its components are physically applied at the worksite. Typically, this step includes health screening, referral of high-risk employees to a physician, requisition of the physician’s feedback from the referral visit, and the use of a worksite wellness program to reduce employee health risks. Implementation also includes any other initiatives to instigate health improvement across other aspects of the worksite.
- Evaluation – The methods used to monitor and measure the successes and failures of the workplace health promotion program also track participation and changes in health. Assessing the program provides the opportunity for improvement, adjustments, report development and feedback. Keeping good evaluative records hold value for management, employees, outside health professionals and other companies who are trying to establish new health promotion programs.
Calculating your Company Health Needs
Selecting appropriate goals and extracting objectives that reflect the health and wellness needs of the company corresponds directly with the scope of the health screening tool and its accuracy with pinpointing health risks. Some tips to help choose an assessment tool best suited to your company needs are:
- Send an endorsement of the upcoming health screen from the head of the company explaining the purpose of the survey, what the employees will gain from participating and emphasizing how confidentiality will be protected.
- Try a dry run with a random selection of employees. Ask for feedback on question clarity and perception.
- Be sure to include demographic information, but make sure it does not expose the identity of the participant.
- Avoid open-ended questions. Phrase queries so that they can be answered with either a yes or a no. This streamlines the information gathered from the answers and leaves options open for computerizing forms and graphing results..
- Leave a space at the end for elaborating, making suggestions and expanding on anything the yes or no choice did not suffice to answer.
Lastly, remember that one excellent reference for health risk information is the employees own self-assessment. While self-reporting does contain a subjective bias, the wealth of good facts it does elicit should not be dismissed.
Writer Bio: John Bates is a leading wellness industry consultant and prolific writer about all aspects of health and wellness programs. His work can be found on numerous wellness websites including his own: Infinite Wellness Solution’s and Infinite Health Coach.