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Health Promotion Getting Started

There are a variety of steps and strategies an employer should consider when developing, designing and implementing a wellness/health promotion effort. These steps and strategies include both programmatic considerations as well as evaluation considerations. This section will discuss each area and offer insight from the literature followed with a comprehensive list of resources and websites available for additional information.

Source: Continuum Alliance. Outcomes Guidelines Report, Vol. 5. Washington, DC: Care Continuum Alliance. 2010

Programmatic Considerations

Although there is limited research available to validate best practices and key components for a wellness/health promotion program, the body of evidence is growing steadily. This body of evidence offers insight into what might be considered a common set of elements often included in successful wellness and health promotion programs. The literature tends to categorize wellness and health promotion programs into those programs that are more comprehensive and those programs that focus on a single risk or task for the populations[1]. Regardless of the scope, Soler et al. found that the assessment of health risk with feedback was a core component that, if implemented as a gateway intervention as part of a larger program, was key to a successful program that yielded strong outcomes[2].

An employer can follow these basic steps to develop and implement health promotion activities:

  1. Identify data sources (HRA, claims, etc.). 
  2. Assess the population. 
  3. Design program based on population findings. 
  4. Implement the program. 
  5. Design program evaluation using measures identified from the findings.

[1] Terry PE, Seaverson ELD, Grossmeier J, Anderson DR. Association between nine quality components and superior worksite health management program results. J of Occup and Environ Med. 2008 Jun; 50(6): 633-641.

[2] Soler RE, et al. A systematic review of selected interventions for worksite health promotion: the assessment of health risks with feedback. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2010 Feb; 38(2 Supplement): S237-S262.

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