Preventive health program supports employees

By Shelley Kleinschmidt

Photography By Randy Montoya

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Knowing and acting on your health status is key to a healthier life

health care worker checks patient's blood pressure
IN THE KNOW — Health care provider Johanna Grassham checks Dean Klassy’s vitals during a visit to Sandia’s medical clinic.

Sandia’s Albuquerque medical clinic received 136 patients transported by the Labs’ Emergency Medical Services in fiscal year 2019. Of those, 35% were cardiac- or stroke-related (33% cardiac, 2% stroke).

National news headlines bombard readers with health statistics and it’s pretty easy to tune them out, but when those numbers hit close to home, it grabs our attention.

How well do you know your health status? Sandia’s preventive health and health management teams can help assess your risk for heart disease and stroke, possibly lessening your risk of ending up in an EMS transport.

Citing the 2010 World Economic Forum, Sandia Preventive Health Program Coordinator Callie Lovato said, “Sandia health programs are focused on diminishing the eight risks and behaviors that drive the top 15 chronic conditions and account for 80% of total costs for all chronic illnesses worldwide.” 

Without question, preventive efforts are vital when it comes to these top 15 chronic conditions: diabetes, coronary artery disease, hypertension, back pain, obesity, cancer, asthma, arthritis, allergies, sinusitis, depression, congestive heart failure, lung disease, kidney disease and high cholesterol.

Callie said the eight risks and behaviors that lead to these chronic conditions are physical inactivity, smoking, lack of health screenings, poor stress management, poor standard of care, inefficient sleep, excessive alcohol and poor diet. To help make a difference in offsetting such risks and behaviors, “Employee Health Services is committed to engaging as many employees as possible in Sandia’s well-check program,” she said.

February is American Heart Month

Sandia uses Wellsource Health Assessment data and its own historical preventive health data to drive program changes onsite in the directions most beneficial to employees. To find out more about their own health status and risks and learn about healthy behavior changes, employees can start by using Sandia’s easy three-step process:

Step 1: Attend a “Know Your Numbers” preventive screening. Send a message to Employee Health Services through the FollowMyHealth Portal or call 505-844-4237 in New Mexico or 925-294-2700 in California to learn about the screenings.

Step 2: Use your screening numbers to complete your Wellsource Health Assessment through Virgin Pulse. The assessment can be completed annually to track health status. Employees who complete the assessment will earn $250 in their health reimbursement accounts for the following year.

Step 3: Schedule a well-check appointment. Employees can discuss their health assessment results with a health educator and learn how Sandia’s onsite preventive health programs can help address their risks. To schedule a well-check, call 505-844-4237 in New Mexico or 925-294-2700 in California. Employees will earn 3,000 Virgin Pulse points for the visit.

Health Action Plans like the recently revamped Healthy Heart HAP are one example of Sandia’s health program benefits for employees. Working with a health coach can make a dramatic difference in planning a wellness path.

“The Healthy Heart Health Action Plan works by combining our fitness and nutrition coaching and assessment services in order to develop positive habits and changes for folks trying to combat or manage any number of the 15 chronic conditions,” said Sandia health educator Matt Thomas. “It is one of our most intensive HAPs.”

He added that the HAP operates on a 12-month period of assessment and observation and involves meeting quarterly and working with both a fitness specialist and a registered dietician.

In honor of American Heart Month, Sandia Employee Health Services encourages employees to do their heart a favor and enroll in the Healthy Heart HAP, which can be done prior to or following a well-check appointment.

To get started with a well-check appointment, call 505-844-4237 in New Mexico, or 925-294-2700 in California.