University of Michigan Receives C. Everett Koop National Health Award for Efforts to Promote a Culture of Health

WASHINGTON, September 21, 2021 / PRNewswire / – The COVID-19 pandemic has put health and safety issues in the spotlight and demonstrated the critical role that worker wellbeing plays in our country’s ability to be resilient in the face of crisis. However, the importance of protecting and promoting the health of employees is not limited to our present circumstances. Some employers have long recognized that investing in health promotion and health programs in the workplace can help organizations achieve sustainable business results even in the best of times.

For more than a quarter of a century, a nonprofit called The Health Project has given annual awards to organizations with proven health improvement programs through its prestigious C. Everett Koop National Health Award. Today The Health Project announced that University of Michigan (UM) as award winner 2021.

The university’s MHealthy program supports the health and wellbeing of UM faculty and staff, as well as their families, UM patients, retirees, community members, and K-12 students. MHealthy provides effective, evidence-based health and wellness programs and services that improve people’s lives and support a health culture in the university. By and large, the programs address the following areas of health behavior: physical activity / exercise, smoking cessation, alcohol use, diet and weight problems, mental and emotional wellbeing and sleep, and workplace health and ergonomics services.

When examining the data between 2016 and 2019, it was found that program participants had lower costs for medical and pharmaceutical claims, sickness absenteeism, and turnover rates compared to non-participants. In addition, UM outperformed several national benchmarks on a variety of metrics, including sickness absenteeism, turnover, and occupational health.

Since its inception in 2016, the program has remained flexible to meet the diverse challenges faced by its employees, including those arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, MHealthy introduced new initiatives to address unique pandemic-related issues such as care, social isolation and financial well-being.

“The C. Everett Co-op The award recognizes organizations with comprehensive, evidence-based programs to improve health and well-being, “said Ron Gotzel, PhD, President and CEO of The Health Project. “The health project is honored to be that University of Michigan on the list of award-winning organizations and hope that UM’s exemplary workplace health promotion program will encourage others to step up their efforts at a time when the health and wellbeing of employees is critical to the health of the country. ”

Because of the rigorous standards required to document health improvements and cost savings, fewer than 70 organizations have been honored with this prestigious award since The Health Project was founded, with the late Dr. C. Everett Co-op, the former general surgeon of United States, as honorary chairman.

In addition to the 2021 award winner, Union Bank & Trust (UBT) received an honorable mention for the second time in a row. UBT offers numerous programs, educational opportunities, and support services to participate in its mission of promoting a corporate culture that promotes healthy behavior and enables healthy decision-making. The prizes will be awarded on October 14, 2021 at the annual forum of the Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO), which is taking place virtually this year due to the pandemic. For more information on the C. Everett Koop National Health Award and award-winning health promotion programs, please visit http://thehealthproject.com.

The Health Project, Inc. (The Health Project, “THP”) is a tax-exempt, not-for-profit corporation founded to create critical attitude and behavioral changes with regard to the health and well-being of Americans. THP’s mission is to identify, evaluate, promote and disseminate insights from exemplary health promotion and disease prevention programs that have demonstrated effectiveness in improving employee health and related business results. The C. Everett Koop National Health Awards are presented annually to workplace, community, or provider programs that are well integrated with the organization’s infrastructure and have resulted in significant public health improvements and remarkable business results.

SOURCE The Health Project

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