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The Scoop

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Local companies win gold in fit-friendly program

Statement issued Thursday:

March 29, 2012 (Fort Wayne, IN) – The American Heart Association today recognized 30 Indiana companies as Fit-Friendly Companies for promoting physical activity and health in the workplace. Nationally, the association recognized 1,376 companies — an all-time high. More than 2 million employees participated in the programs.

The Fit-Friendly Companies program is a catalyst for positive change in the American workforce by helping companies make their employees’ health and wellness a priority. The Fit-Friendly Companies Program offers a unique, easy-to-implement opportunity for corporations to increase employees’ physical activity, which will help improve their health – and their employers’ bottom line.

Even people who haven’t exercised regularly until middle age can reap significant benefits by starting a walking program. A study published in 1986 in the New England Journal of Medicine found that some adults may gain two hours of life expectancy for every hour of regular, vigorous exercise they performed.

Indiana companies designated this month as Fit-Friendly include:

  • Community Hospital of Bremen Bremen Gold
  • J.D. Byrider Systems, Inc. Carmel Gold
  • RCI Carmel Platinum
  • CNO Financial Group Carmel Platinum
  • Cummins Technical Center Columbus Gold
  • Harrison County Hospital Corydon Gold
  • Deaconess Health System Evansville Platinum
  • Ash Brokerage Corporation Fort Wayne Gold
  • Britton Marketing & Design Group Fort Wayne Gold
  • Central Branch YMCA Fort Wayne Gold
  • Lutheran Life Villages Fort Wayne Gold
  • PHP Fort Wayne Gold
  • Raytheon NCS (Fort Wayne) Fort Wayne Gold
  • Spiece Fitness Fort Wayne Gold
  • Jorgensen Family YMCA Fort Wayne Gold
  • AJP CORP GOSHEN Gold
  • Duke Realty Indianapolis Gold
  • AAR Aircraft Services – Indianapolis Indianapolis Gold
  • BSA LifeStructures Indianapolis Gold
  • Peerless Pump Company Indianapolis Gold
  • American Structurepoint, Inc Indianapolis Gold
  • St. Vincent Health Indianapolis Gold
  • UnitedHealthcare of Indiana / Kentucky Indianapolis Gold
  • Emmis Communications Indianapolis Gold
  • Subaru of Indiana Automotive Lafayette Platinum
  • Bayer HealthCare Mishawaka Gold
  • IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital Muncie Gold
  • Floyd Memorial Hospital New Albany Gold
  • Memorial Hospital of South Bend South Bend Gold
  • Medco Health Solutions Whitestown Gold

Fit-Friendly Companies reach Gold level status by implementing various activities and programs to encourage physical activity, nutrition and culture enhancements such as on-site walking routes, healthy food choices in cafeterias and vending machines, annual employee health risk assessments and online tracking tools. Companies that achieve Platinum recognition — the highest tier — take the program a step further by measuring the outcomes of their wellness efforts.

The American Heart Association said that companies can save up to $15 for every $1 spent on health and wellness within 12 to 18 months of implementing a worksite wellness program. Each employee who works to lower their risk status saves their company an estimated $53 per year; these savings remain each year that employee maintains the low-risk level.

American employers are losing an estimated $225.8 billion a year because of healthcare expenses and health-related losses in productivity, and those numbers are rising. Many American adults spend most of their waking hours at sedentary jobs. Their lack of regular physical activity raises their risk for a host of medical problems, such as obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes. Employers face $12.7 billion in annual medical expenses due to obesity alone. The American Heart Association is working to change corporate cultures by motivating employees to start walking, which has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity.

For more information about the Fit-Friendly Companies program and how it is helping to improve the health of Americans by focusing on an activity that is convenient, free and easy, call 250-494-6530 or visit www.startwalkingnow.org.

The Fit-Friendly program is sponsored nationally by Subway Restaurants and locally by PHP.

Send items for The Scoop to jgnews@jg.net.

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