Value of Health Risk Reduction Strategies Focus of Collaboration

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Mayo Clinic Health Management Resources and Disability Management Employer Coalition (DMEC) announce their collaboration on employee health and wellness. These two employee health management leaders are joining together to raise awareness of the importance of a health risk reduction strategy to help employers reach larger health and productivity goals. Risk reduction strategies are at the forefront of employer efforts to help empower people with information and tools to identify key health risks and offer interventions aimed at changing behaviors.

"Research shows that a person with multiple risks can incur more than double the health costs of someone with a lower risk profile," explains Philip Hagen, M.D., medical director of Mayo Clinic Health Management Resources and a preventive medicine specialist at Mayo Clinic. "This relationship makes identifying risk groups and offering targeted health interventions an even more important business strategy for containing health care costs."

"As employers move into more comprehensive disability and absence management programs they find a key element to cost control and containment starts with basic preventive measures," says Sharon Kaleta, CEO of DMEC. "Utilizing Health Risk Assessment models provide employers with invaluable information with which to model and implement programs to not only reduce health care costs but to provide resources to the population addressing specific needs on an individual basis."

The collaboration
The educational collaboration between Mayo Clinic Health Management Resources and DMEC will help move forward this important health management strategy by educating employers and letting them experience it. These opportunities include:

Virtual Education
Mayo Clinic experts presenting at DMEC Virtual Education Forums (webcasts) on health risk assessment approaches and risk reduction interventions.

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Annual Conference Session
"Health Risk Assessment (HRA): the Cornerstone of Health and Productivity," will be presented by Mayo Clinic staff members at the upcoming DMEC Conference.

Mayo Clinic Health Risk Assessment Access
At the DMEC annual conference, an internet e-Caf ' will be set up for attendees to personally experience how an online HRA works and the value of the information it provides. Attendees can use the kiosks loaded with the Mayo Clinic Health Risk Assessment. Upon completion of the health risk assessment, attendees receive their own Personal Health Report outlining their health risks and strengths with actionable information to follow, including links to online resources within the Mayo Clinic e-Health Package.

HRA Data Compilation and Analysis
Aggregate data from the DMEC HRA will be analyzed and shared with the membership to further educate on how results can be used to direct appropriate risk reduction strategies.

"A risk assessment and intervention strategy starts with the premise that people can have a significant impact on future health outcomes through their day-to-day lifestyle choices," says Tom Ferraro, director of business development for Mayo Clinic Health Management resources. "The goal for lifestyle change advocated by the Mayo Clinic Health Risk Assessment is to reduce health risks by raising awareness, providing tailored feedback, ongoing encouragement, and effective goal-setting and tracking tools through online behavior change programs."

Mayo Clinic Health Management Resources offers corporations a suite of programs that include Mayo Clinic e-Health Package of online health tools and information, the Mayo Clinic Health Risk Assessment, Mayo Clinic HealthQuest newsletter, Mayo Clinic Guide to Self-Care book, Ask Mayo Clinic nurse line, Mayo Clinic Tobacco Quitline and telephonic lifestyle coaching. For more information on Mayo Clinic Health Management Resources contact 800-430-9699. The web site is www.mayoclinichealthsolutions.com/

The Disability Management Employer Coalition, Inc. (DMEC), is a nonprofit, employer-focused professional association founded in 1992 to advance the development of integrated disability management processes in all disability-related employer programs. The coalition encourages employers, health and disability providers, and the government at all levels to support the concept of disability, benefits and absence integration. DMEC is headquartered at 6343 El Cajon Boulevard, Suite 110, San Diego, CA 92115. Telephone: 800-789-3632. Fax: 619-303-6855. Web site: www.dmec.org

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