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January 7, 2013
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Strategies to improve employee and population health

  Wellness Programs & Trends 
  • WellPoint offers telehealth visits to plan members in 2 states
    Health insurer WellPoint is launching a telehealth initiative in California and Ohio that will allow employer-sponsored plan members to consult with physicians using live two-way video. LiveHealth Online will be available to employees either at work or at home and WellPoint says it expects the program to hold down costs. InformationWeek (1/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Well-designed wellness programs show ROI, expert says
    Wellness programs can show a strong return on investment as long as they are designed and implemented properly, says Larry Chapman, CEO of the Chapman Institute, which certifies wellness practitioners. He says studies show wellness programs can make employees healthier, reduce medical claims and absenteeism, and lead to a ROI. (1/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Health News & Research 
  • Flu activity on the rise, CDC reports
    The CDC issued an update noting an early and serious flu season, with the number of people seeking care for influenza-like conditions increasing from 2.8% to 5.6% in a four-week period. "Antiviral treatment, started as early as possible after becoming ill, is recommended for any patients with confirmed or suspected influenza who are hospitalized, seriously ill, or ill and at high risk of serious influenza-related complications, including young children, people 65 and older, people with certain underlying medical conditions, and pregnant women," the agency said. News (1/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Many people don't know all risks of obesity, survey shows
    More than 70% of people surveyed correctly identified heart disease and diabetes as two serious consequences of obesity, but only about 15% mentioned arthritis and 7% said cancer, according to a poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The survey showed that about 25% of people said it is possible to be healthy while very overweight, and 52% said they had talked with a physician about the health risks of being overweight. (Tampa, Fla.)/The Associated Press (1/6) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • FDA shifts focus to prevention in proposed food-safety rules
    The FDA has proposed food-safety rules that would subject those who process food to stricter monitoring and require produce farmers to keep deadly bacteria out of their fields. All aspects of growing and harvesting produce would be covered by the proposed standards, which represent a shift toward disease prevention, Bill Tomson writes. The Wall Street Journal (1/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Schools & Community 
  • Neb. doctor wants soda subsidy ended to fund wellness program
    Wellness programs in Nebraska schools have reduced the number of obese children, so Dr. Bob Rauner, chairman of the Nebraska Medical Association Public Health Committee, wants to end the state's sales tax exemption on soda to raise $11 million to pay for a statewide obesity program. Lincoln Sen. Bill Avery said he will introduce a bill to do that because tax exemptions for soda are indefensible as they have no nutritional value and do not belong in the same category as food. Lincoln Journal Star (Neb.) (tiered subscription model) (1/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • More families are in need of school-meal assistance
    School districts in South Carolina are reporting an uptick in the number of students who qualify for free- and reduced-price meals -- a trend being seen nationwide. Educators say many families are requesting meal assistance for the first time and, in many cases, the meals served at schools -- breakfast, lunch and snacks in some cases -- are critical for students and families. The State (Columbia, S.C.) (1/6) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Wellness Industry Developments 
  AHIP News 
  • Stay ahead of the curve
    AHIP’s National Policy Forum, March 13 and 14 in Washington, D.C., is one-stop shopping for those seeking insights on the latest policy developments and trends shaping health care. Learn from health insurance plan leaders as well as business, health policy and political speakers as they focus on the political and regulatory issues affecting our changing health care system. Register today. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Asthma Care Advances compendia highlights health plan strategies
    One in 12 Americans have asthma, disproportionately affecting children, racial and ethnic groups, and low-income individuals. Learn how health plans improve the lives of individuals with asthma by adopting culturally sensitive asthma management strategies. AHIP’s online compendia, Asthma Care Advances, and infographic highlights plans’ efforts to increase access to timely and quality care, resulting in better outcomes. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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If money be not thy servant, it will be thy master. The covetous man cannot so properly be said to possess wealth, as that may be said to possess him."
--Francis Bacon,
British author and statesman

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