By: Sheryl Sowell | Category: Financial Services | Issue: September 2011
Mike Ziegenhorn of The Holmes Organisation by an incentaHEALTH kiosk.
The Holmes Organisation, a local leader in insurance and benefits for over 40 years, regards employee wellness as a critical issue, one that both saves clients money while improving the population’s health and reducing healthcare costs. Chief Executive Officer Stuart DeSelms said Holmes has become Oklahoma’s exclusive agent for an innovative HEALTHspot program developed by incentaHEALTH of Denver.
The incentaHEALTH program provides clients with a networked kiosk for recording employee weight and blood pressure. “While other companies may offer incentives for participation in their wellness programs, incentaHEALTH provides cash rewards,” said Eric Moon, Holmes’ wellness coach and corporate programming consultant. “It actually pays employees quarterly for losing weight and maintaining their new weight. Depending on their starting BMI and amount of weight loss, employees can earn several hundred dollars over the course of a year.”
The program is completely automated and does not require any corporate manpower from the employer to administer it. It uses patented electronic kiosks that are installed in the workplace to give employees instant but private access to their health stats while also tracking their performance.
Instead of relying on self-reported data from employees, incentaHEALTH provides pure, HIPAA-compliant data via its kiosks to incentaHEALTH’s data center. The employer never sees confidential employee information, and the data is used to measure program results and calculate the company’s specific return on investment. “Even companies with existing wellness programs can benefit from implementing this program because of its measurement functionality,” added Moon. According to Mike Ziegenhorn of The Holmes Organisation, “This is an ideal fit for companies with no program yet or a program looking for its next step."
incentaHEALTH delivers customized exercise and nutrition plans to employees each day via email and/or text message. Advice is individualized and based on each person’s performance to date. Employees can also access weekly shopping lists online that correspond with the nutrition plans, as well as other helpful information designed to remove barriers to a healthy lifestyle.
Holmes has signed Tulsa’s River Spirit Casino as its first incentaHEALTH client. According to River Spirit’s HR director, Michael Shaw, runaway healthcare costs and obesity are among the most pressing concerns facing business. He believes a more proactive approach to employee wellness is necessary, and the casino is implementing a plan focused on prevention as a key to success – as well as a method to help reduce claims costs and healthcare expenditures.
“In general, we are just not as healthy as we used to be,” Shaw noted. “The Native American population is especially prone to experiencing high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes, and we at River Spirit are focused on a solution that can help get to the root causes of health problems – and prevent them. incentaHEALTH is a great fit due to the proactive nature of its interactive tools and reimbursement programs – it is superior to other wellness programs I have had experience with in the past, and is attractively priced at about 20 percent of the cost of those programs. River Spirit Casino takes its role as an active voice in the community very seriously, and our engagement with incentaHEALTH is evidence of this. By implementing their employee wellness program, we are taking proactive steps toward being as socially and fiscally responsible as possible.”
“As most national studies indicate, the state of Oklahoma is near the bottom of most health indicator lists – including obesity and consumption of a healthy diet – and we, with the support of incentaHEALTH, are committed to changing that,” said Moon. “Many of the employers in Oklahoma that we work with are looking for innovative wellness programs
that get measurable results – and incentaHEALTH is one such program.”
“Our technology-focused approach gives employees access to a large network of healthcare practitioners, fitness professionals, dieticians and more – all right at their fingertips – with the added bonus of keeping costs down,” explained Todd McGuire,
co-founder and chief technology officer of incentaHEALTH.
The Holmes Organisation anticipates widespread application potential for the program, not just with their 2,000-plus existing clients, but with firms that might want to make a kiosk-based wellness program available to their customers, ranging from doctor’s offices to building owners with numerous tenants.
Sheryl Sowell was born and raised in Tulsa, OK. She graduated from Will Rogers High School and received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Northeastern State University in 2007. She has worked for Value News as editor, writer and advertising copywriter since 2008. She enjoys meeting and interviewing people for Value News articles, learning about their backgrounds, and helping to promote their businesses and local events. In her free time, she enjoys reading, trying new recipes and crafts from Pinterest, attending concerts and sporting events, and spending time with family and friends. Sheryl lives in Tulsa with her fiancé Paul, their daughter Scarlett, and their two dogs, Gunner and Boo.