News release from the American Heart Association:
American Heart Association names Fit-Friendly companies in Indiana
Worksite wellness programs help lower healthcare costs, improve employees’ health
(February 13, 2014) – The American Heart Association today recognized 47 Indiana companies as Fit-Friendly Companies for promoting physical activity and health in the workplace, including 22 recognized for the first time. Nationally, the association recognized 1,802 companies during this application cycle.
The Fit-Friendly Companies program is a catalyst for positive change in the American workforce by helping companies make their employees’ health and wellness a priority. The Fit-Friendly Companies Program offers a unique, easy-to-implement opportunity for corporations to increase employees’ physical activity, which will help improve their health – and their employers’ bottom line.
Even people who haven’t exercised regularly until middle age can reap significant benefits by starting a walking program. A study published in 1986 in the New England Journal of Medicine found that some adults may gain two hours of life expectancy for every hour of regular, vigorous exercise they performed.
Indiana companies designated this cycle as Fit-Friendly include:
- Angie’s List – Indianapolis – Gold
- Apex Benefits Group (New) – Indianapolis – Gold
- Ball State University – Muncie – Gold
- Celadon Group – Indianapolis – Platinum
- Citizens Energy Group – Indianapolis –Platinum
- City of Franklin (New) – Franklin – Gold
- Community Health Network – Indianapolis – Platinum
- CSN (New) – Terre Haute – Gold
- Deaconess Health System – Evansville – Platinum
- DeKalb Health – Auburn – Gold
- Delta Faucet Company – Indianapolis – Gold
- DuBois Wood Products (New) – Huntingburg – Gold
- Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. (New) – Evansville – Gold
- General Electric-Fort Wayne Power Conversion – Fort Wayne – Gold
- Hobart Family YMCA – Hobart – Gold
- Horseshoe Southern Indiana (New) – Elizabeth – Gold
- Indiana Blood Center – Indianapolis – Platinum
- Indiana University Health West Hospital – Avon – Platinum
- Ingram Micro Mobility (New) – Plainfield – Gold
- Interactive Intelligence – Indianapolis – Gold
- IU Health La Porte Hospital – La Porte – Gold
- Ivy Tech Community College (New) – Evansville – Gold
- Jasper Rubber Products (New) – Jasper – Gold
- Jay County Hospital (New) – Portland – Gold
- MED Institute West – Lafayette – Gold
- Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center (New) – Jasper – Gold
- Monarch Beverage (New) – Indianapolis – Gold
- Mulzer Crushed Stone (New) – Tell City – Gold
- Neace Lukens – Indianapolis – Gold
- OFS Brands (New) – Huntingburg – Gold
- Saint Meinrad Archabbey (New) – St. Meinrad – Gold
- Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics (New) – Mishawaka – Gold
- Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics (New) – Elkhart – Gold
- South Bend Medical Foundation – South Bend – Gold
- St. Francis Hospital and Health Centers – Indianapolis – Platinum
- St. Mary’s (New) – Evansville – Gold
- Terre Haute Regional Hospital – Terre Haute – Gold
- Tobias Insurance Group – Indianapolis – Gold
- Toyota Motor Manufacturing (New) – Princeton – Platinum
- Unifrax – New Carlisle – Platinum
- Union Hospital – Terre Haute – Platinum
- University of Southern Indiana (New) – Evansville – Gold
- Vectren – Evansville – Platinum
- Welborn Baptist Foundation (New) – Evansville – Gold
- Wishard-Eskenazi Health – Indianapolis – Gold
- Witham Health Services – Lebanon – Platinum
- YMCA of Southwestern Indiana (New) – Evansville – Platinum
Fit-Friendly Companies reach Gold level status by implementing various activities and programs to encourage physical activity, nutrition and culture enhancements such as on-site walking routes, healthy food choices in cafeterias and vending machines, annual employee health risk assessments and online tracking tools. Companies that achieve Platinum recognition â€” the highest tier â€” take the program a step further by measuring the outcomes of their wellness efforts.
According to the American Heart Association, companies can save up to $15 for every $1 spent on health and wellness within 12 to18 months of implementing a worksite wellness program. Each employee who works to lower their risk status saves their company an estimated $53 per year; these savings remain each year that employee maintains the low-risk level.
American employers are losing an estimated $225.8 billion a year because of healthcare expenses and health-related losses in productivity, and those numbers are rising. Many American adults spend most of their waking hours at sedentary jobs. Their lack of regular physical activity raises their risk for a host of medical problems, such as obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes. Employers face $12.7 billion in annual medical expenses due to obesity alone. The American Heart Association is working to change corporate cultures by motivating employees to start walking, which has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity.
For more information about the Fit-Friendly Companies program and how it is helping to improve the health of Americans by focusing on an activity that is convenient, free and easy, visit www.startwalkingnow.org.