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2013 February-March Take a Look at the State of Our Health

More and more of us are getting healthier, one step at a time. 

Since the Take CARE Wellness Program began in 2008, we've made our own health a priority.

During the 2012 plan year, more than 4,000 of us earned nearly 1.5 million wellness points - earning gift cards or adding dollars to our health accounts to reduce our out-of-pocket deductible expenses.

More importantly, we're living healthier lifestyles.

Our participation in wellness points programs has focused our attention on specific ways to improve our health, like getting enough sleep each night and practicing stress reduction techniques throughout our day.

We're not only seeing the difference, we're hearing about it. Our colleagues like Deana Carrillo have shared their stories about their participation in the Take CARE Wellness Program, inspiring more of us to eat healthier and exercise - through programs like our onsite fitness classes.

More Of Us Are Learning About Our Health

Each year, we have two opportunities to learn about our health, including the Health Basics Check (HBC) and the Health Risk Assessment (HRA).

In 2012, both of these programs were required to enroll in medical plans other than the Basic Account plan, and this requirement will continue for the 2013-14 plan year.

Health Basics Check (HBC) Participation

The HBC teaches us our important health numbers which are good indicators of our overall health, including our blood pressure, cholesterol level and Body Mass Index (BMI).

Health Basics Check Participation

Health Risk Assessment (HRA) Participation

The HRA is a confidential online health evaluation that reports our overall health condition, identifies potential risk areas, and provides tools and information to improve both.

Health Risk Assessment (HRA) Participation

 *Spouse participation wasn't tracked in 2008.

We're excited to see more employees and their spouses take advantage of these informative screenings.

The State of Our Health

Each year, we take a snapshot of the state of our health using summary HBC and HRA results complied by StayWell, our wellness vendor. We also review preventive care participation and the prevalence of chronic health conditions using summary data provided by Cigna, our medical plan administrator.

Our 2012 results show both strengths and opportunities.

Blood Pressure

A healthy blood pressure reading is <120/<80. In 2012, our spouses did a better job managing their blood pressure with 3% moving out of the hypertensive category. In 2013, we will continue to educate about the importance of knowing and managing blood pressure. Ideally, we want to reduce the number of us with hypertension (high blood pressure) and pre-hypertension (blood pressure at-risk of being high).

HBC Blood Pressure Results


A healthy cholesterol reading is <199. In 2012, our spouses with high cholesterol lowered their rating slightly. In 2013, we will continue to educate about the importance of knowing and managing cholesterol. Ideally, we want to reduce the number of us with high cholesterol.

HBC Cholesterol Results

Body Mass Index (BMI)

A healthy BMI is <25. In 2012, more of us moved into the moderate and high risk BMI category. In 2013, we'll continue to educate about the importance of healthy habits to help maintain a healthier weight. Ideally, we want to reduce the number of us with a moderate and high risk BMI.

HBC Body Mass Index

Risk Factor Prevalence

Risk factor prevalence is a key indicator of overall health condition: the fewer risks you have, the more likely you are to be healthy overall. In 2012, our spouses did a better job maintaining their overall number of risk factors. In 2013, we want to reduce our risk factor prevalence.

HRA Risk Factor Prevalence

Nine Key Risk Factors

In 2012, our self-reported results also showed improvements in additional risk factors, like back care, healthy eating and physical activity. In 2013, we want to continue to reduce all nine of these risk factors, focusing on stress reduction and weight management.

HRA 13 Risk Factors
HRA 13 Risk Factors 2

Preventive Care

Preventive care identifies health care issues before they become life-threatening. In 2012, we significantly improved our participation in colonoscopy, breast cancer and cervical cancer screenings. In 2013, we want to continue this positive trend with more of us taking advantage of no-cost preventive care available through all of the CMH medical plans.

Cigna Preventive Care

Chronic Health Conditions

Chronic health conditions include diseases like asthma, COPD, diabetes and depression. On an ongoing basis, we want to connect employees and their spouses who have chronic health conditions with Cigna Disease Management services, providing education and resources to help them manage these conditions.

Cigna Chronic Conditions

Finish Strong

The Take CARE Wellness Program will continue to provide easy-to-understand and practical information about ways to improve our most common health risks. With information and support, we're confident we will reduce our risk factors and improve our overall health.

Visit Take CARE Wellness Program to learn about the program, and read "14 Ways to Finish the Wellness Plan Year Strong" in the December/January issue of the Take CARE Newsletter to pick a program and get started.

We look forward to reporting more improvements next plan year!

Program Recognition

This was an award-winning year for the Take CARE Wellness Program. The American Heart Association named Children’s Mercy a 2012 Gold Achievement Fit-Friendly Worksite. And, the Kansas City Business Journal named Children’s Mercy one Kansas City's top five healthiest employers in the large employers category. 

American Heart Association Fit-Friendly Workplace Gold

KCBJ Healthiest Employers

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