Research has shown that physical activity is an essential component to maintaining good health and managing many chronic conditions. A growing number of employers across the country are encouraging physical activity as part of their comprehensive workplace wellness programs. This employer commitment to fitness and health was underscored today when the CEO Pledge was unveiled during the HERO Forum in Phoenix, Ariz. The CEO Pledge is a key component of the country’s first-ever National Physical Activity Plan.
The Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of employee health management as a core business strategy to improve the health and productivity of the nation’s workforce. Each year, the organization hosts the HERO Forum, a gathering of leading health management providers, researchers, and innovative employers who are improving employee health and reducing health care costs in their organizations. The CEO Pledge acknowledges that senior management support is the cornerstone of an effective workplace wellness program.
“HERO member organizations have long recognized the connection between physical activity, better health, and health care spending. These companies also realize that promoting health in the workplace relies on consistent and visible support from company leaders¾starting with the CEO,” said Jerry Noyce, president and CEO of HERO. “We’re pleased to support the introduction of the CEO Pledge at the HERO Forum with employers who are demonstrating their commitment to best practices and creating a healthy and supportive workplace culture.
According to the National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity, which drives the implementation of the National Physical Activity Plan, the CEO Pledge gives business leaders a high-visibility opportunity to support employee health.
“The CEO Pledge gives America’s business leaders the chance to demonstrate their commitment to physical activity in the work environment,” said Laurie Whitsel, director of research for the American Heart Association and president of the National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity. “Their efforts will surely have a positive impact on employee health and workforce productivity across the country.”
The National Physical Activity Plan provides recommendations for community and workplace measures that, if implemented, could significantly improve public health, cut health care costs, and reduce health disparities. More specifically, physical activity and exercise has been shown to prevent and improve the treatment of obesity, diabetes, coronary heart disease, depression, bone disease, cancer and other diseases.
“The CEO Pledge is a perfect example of how business leaders can support the goals of the National Physical Activity Plan,” said Russ Pate, chairman of the National Physical Activity Plan Coordinating Committee. “I am thrilled to see HERO helping to put the National Plan into action. The beneficiaries will be tens of thousands of employees across America.”
The HERO Forum runs through Thursday, September 15. In 2012, the Forum will take place in Minneapolis, Minn. In addition to the Forum, HERO hosts the HERO Think Tank twice a year, where employers, providers and consultants come together to discuss employee health management trends, to share ideas, and to respond to emerging industry opportunities and challenges.
About the Health Enhancement Research Organizations (HERO)
Based in Edina, Minn., the Health Enhancement Research Organization (HERO) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to the creation and dissemination of employee health management research, education, policy, strategy, and leadership.
About the National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity
The National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity’s mission is to unite the strengths of public, private, and industry efforts into collaborative partnerships that inspire and empower all Americans to lead more physically active lifestyles.