Worksite Health Promotion. Part 1

Posted On: Wednesday, October 10th, 2012 at 4:12 pm

The ten leading causes of death in the United States have risk factors that are preventable. Besides genetics and age, risk factorssuch as physical inactivity, poor nutrition, obesity, diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol are modifiable. The U.S. Prevention Services Task Force, consisting of physicians and scientists, concludes that influencing health-related behavior is more likely to reduce morbidity and mortality than any other category of clinical intervention. This idea is what drives the fitness industry.

It used to be that health and the workplace only collided when secondary prevention was necessary. An example of this is an employee assistance program that identifies, treats and rehabilitates employees whose job performance has deteriorated because ofalcohol or drug use. Thistype ofresponse is reactionary, similar to reacting to a heart problem with bypass surgery.

The type of intervention programs are beginning to change, however. Just as individuals are adopting health promotion as a way to prevent the development of
disease, employers are also taking a proactive approach to well-being by addressing employee health issues before they become major problems. More companies are nowreceptive tonew programs and policies designed to promote health and prevent illness. The workplace is becoming a popular venue for delivering health promotion services.

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