Worksite Health Promotion, the Benefits of Providing Personal Health Status Feedback to Employees
Date of Award
Dissertation - Restricted
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Taft, Thomas K.
The increase in health care costs has lead to the realization that there is a need for worksite health promotion programs as a method to contain both financial and human loss. New methods of health promotion must be developed to address this important need. The worksite offers a unique opportunity to address the issue of health promotion. The Health Belief Model addresses issues involved in making health related choices and stresses motivation as necessary for behavior change to occur. Health promotion programs in the occupational environment may initiate behavior changes resulting in improved health, increased quality of life, reduced risk of death or disease and increased productivity. This research evaluated the potential benefits of worksite health promotion programs, in general, and the use of health risk assessments which provided the participants with health information feedback, in particular. This study was conducted at the corporate technology center of a major corporation located in the midwest. The 44 participants ranged in age from 24 to 63 years with an average age of 40.2 years. Each subject was administered a health risk assessment which included blood pressure readings, height and weight measurement, family and medical history and a lifestyle evaluation. Each subject was assigned to one of two groups using random stratified assignment. Subjects in Group 1 received the health education program without individual feedback regarding their personal health risk assessment results. Subjects in Group 2 received feedback and counseling regarding their personal health risk assessment results. Both groups participated in five health education program components. All subjects received feedback regarding their personal health status at the conclusion of the health education program. The research results supported the benefit of worksite wellness programs. This study did not substantiate the health assessments used in conjunction with a worksite health education/health promotion program enhanced the health related behavior change significantly. Based upon the results of this investigation, worksite health promotion efforts are recommended. The assessment feedback and counseling were not found to contribute significantly to differences in health related scores and biometric measures during this study. However, health risk assessments are recommended as an adjunct to wellness programs.