FARMINGTON – The Healthy Community Coalition of Greater Franklin County (HCC) recently presented ten area businesses with Worksite Wellness Awards for their efforts in promoting good health for their employees by supporting tobacco-free lifestyles, encouraging physical activity, and promoting healthy eating.
The awards were presented at the June meetings of the Jay, Livermore, Livermore Falls Chamber and the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce. Gold recipients included: Franklin Community Health Network; HealthQuest Chiropractic; Leap, Inc; Star Barn Bed and Breakfast; Town of Jay; University of Maine at Farmington; and Western Maine Community Action. NotifyMD was a silver-level recipient, while Community Concepts and Safe Voices were recipients at the bronze level.
HCC Program Coordinator Leanne DiMaio stated, “To qualify for an award, businesses completed components of the Healthy Maine Works (HMW) tool: the worksite self-assessment survey, the employee survey, and the worksite wellness work plan. Awards are based on the number of sections of the three that were completed.”
The purpose of HMW is to guide and support Maine employers in developing worksite wellness programs that support the health of employees. HMW is a project of Maine’s Center for Disease Control, Office of Substance Abuse, and Department of Education, and is delivered in collaboration with local Healthy Maine Partnerships across the state.
The on-line, easy-to-use HMW software tool is available free of charge to employers across the state. The tool offers: employee and organizational assessments that help establish health-related priorities; health promotion ideas and resources; and an action-plan form and guide. To access the tool, employers must first contact DiMaio at the HCC.
“Participating organizations have realized that a healthier workforce is beneficial to everyone,” DiMaio added. “It benefits employees to have their employer promoting health. For the employer this translates into reduced absenteeism, lower health care costs, improved productivity, and healthy and happier employees.”
According to DiMaio, as health care costs continue to soar, three out of four U.S. businesses are focusing on employee health—up from about 50 percent in 2009.
Through its Health Works! Program, HCC can also provide worksites with other services to promote healthy behaviors including flu shots, health screenings, lunch and learns, newsletters, technical assistance, and educational materials. Any business or organization that would like more information on the Health Works! Program or to participate in HMW is encouraged to contact Leanne DiMaio at 779-2933.
HCC is a Healthy Maine Partnership, and an affiliate of the Franklin Community Health Network. See us online at www.fchn.org/hcc.