Tufts Health Plan Hosts First Annual Wellness Summit

WATERTOWN, Mass., Oct. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Employee health and well-being took center stage last week as Tufts Health Plan hosted more than 60 employer clients for an interactive half-day Wellness Summit. The event provided an opportunity for clients to learn about worksite wellness strategies from their peers and workplace wellness experts who answered questions and gave practical advice.  

Keynote speaker Anne Marie Ludovici-Connolly, a wellness expert and consultant for numerous local and national organizations, talked about the most challenging aspects of workplace wellness—starting a program and keeping employees on track.  She also reviewed key components of successful programs and shared tips for measuring and improving outcomes.

In his opening remarks to attendees, Brian Pagliaro, senior vice president of sales, marketing and client services at Tufts Health Plan, explained how companies can save money by investing in the health of their employees. "For every $1 spent on workplace wellness, employers can save $3.27 on medical costs," he said. "This number represents a significant yearly savings for companies who are trying to control health insurance budgets while continuing to grow and thrive in the current down economy."

In addition to the financial benefit, Pagliaro added that "the opportunity to improve productivity and the quality of life for employees is even more important."

Paul Kasuba, senior vice president and chief medical officer, moderated a group of four panelists who described their wellness programs and offered ways to keep employees engaged. Panel participants were: Lydia Greene, Tufts Health Plan vice president of human resources and diversity, who explained how Tufts Health Plan created and sustains its WorkingWell program; Delia Vetter, EMC Corporation; Glenn Haskell, New Balance Athletic Shoes; and Robyn Belair, Lesley University.  

"WorkingWell is a valuable employee benefit that goes hand-in-hand with Tufts Health Plan's business philosophy of 'no one does more to keep you healthy'," Greene said. "By offering an onsite program that directly promotes physical, mental and emotional well-being we are advocating and supporting opportunities for our employees to live a healthy lifestyle."

Topping the event was an awards presentation to recognize and celebrate companies who are committed to improving the health and well-being of their employees.  The categories and winners were:

Innovative Program

Bentley University

Completed 9th Tour de Bentley Spring Fitness Challenge, a 12-week program of fitness education

Outstanding Participation in a Wellness Program

Brandeis University

Launched a wellness program this spring with 700 participants, featuring onsite health screenings and  Personal Health Assessment surveys

The Walking the Talk

Seaport Companies

Formed a walking team called the "Seaport Strutters," committed to walking 30 minutes daily

The Most Inspiring Story

Lesley University

Created a wellness program on a limited budget using employee and locally available resources

Attendees left the summit with tangible ideas on how to bring wellness to their workplaces, and with an invitation to return to Tufts Health Plan for more discussions next year.

About Tufts Health Plan

Tufts Health Plan, a nonprofit health plan available in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, is recognized nationwide for its commitment to providing innovative, high-quality health care coverage.  More information about the organization is available on its website, www.tuftshealthplan.com.

SOURCE Tufts Health Plan