AUSTIN, Texas, Nov. 15 The LoneStart Wellness Initiativeis proving that even a small investment in employee wellness can produce bigreturns for participants, organizations and their communities. What beganthree years ago as a grassroots effort to show individuals they could follow arealistic strategy to attain and sustain long term health, is now showingemployers they can realize substantial payback through decreased health costs,lower absenteeism, healthier employees, and even lower insurance premiums.
LoneStart has paid off for Sid Peterson Memorial Hospital in Kerrville,Texas, where 136 employees lost 921 pounds and cut their BMI by an average of1.8 points in just 63 days through the LoneStart Team Esteem Challenge. Thanksto these results the hospital's health insurance premiums have decreased by9.1 percent. In real dollars, this equates to about $58 per employee per month($46,400), $105 per employee and spouse, and $109 per employee and family permonth.
"Admissions for six months of the year were down by 25 percent, withlength of stay per admission down 3 percent for the same period," says PatMurray, Hospital Administrator. "LoneStart proves that making small changes innormal activities can have a beneficial impact on employees' overall andindividual health status."
Jeff Burdick, Senior Vice President of Wells Fargo Benefit Services says,"It is exciting to see employees embrace the spirit of wellness with theLoneStart Challenge, and realize the results of their efforts, including areduction in their contributions toward premium costs."
"We address the weighty issues of obesity, overweight and lack of physicalactivity, and their effect on preventable chronic disease, and we're doing itwith a cost effective, turnkey initiative that presents a positive strategyand creates the expectation of success on the part of the participants," saysJay Seifert, co-founder of the LoneStart Wellness Initiative.
The LoneStart Wellness Initiative is based on the premise that each of usmust take personal responsibility to make better nutritional choices andbecome more physically active. The behavior-based strategy providesparticipants with the opportunity and tools to make modest yet meaningfulchanges that lead to long term, sustainable results. Visit their Web site athttp://www.lonestartnow.com.