Boston Business Journal names Cape Cod Lumber as Champion in Health Care for wellness program

The Boston Business Journal recently honored Cape Cod Lumber, a Massachusetts-based building supply company that has been offering its services to builders and architects since 1958, for its innovations as corporate health and wellness incentive program.

The program, which provides benefits to Cape Cod Lumber’s 100 employees, earned the company the journal’s Champion in Health Care distinction.

Since Wellness Workdays implemented its corporate health and wellness program for Cape Cod Lumber in June 2010, one employee has quit smoking, one third of the company’s employees have started exercising in co-ordinance with recommended guidelines, one employee was taken off medication for high blood pressure and collectively, employees lost more than 180 pounds.

“Improving the health of my employees is very important to me,” said Harvey Hurvitz, president of Cape Cod Lumber. “Our goal was to develop a healthy culture and environment for our employees. We have made great strides and will continue to make health a top priority.”

The incentives offered to Cape Cod Lumber employees for taking part in the program include discounts on insurance policies. A total of 32 employees have accrued these discounts.

Companies everywhere are investing in similar programs in an effort to improve the health and well-being of employees lower employer healthcare costs and raise morale and productivity.

Laurie Friedman, spokeswoman for IBM Corporation, told Westfair Online that IBM has invested $81 million in various wellness programs between 2004 and 2006 and saw a return of $190 million in healthcare costs.

“IBM has a culture of health where employees are encouraged to maintain healthy behaviors and be smart consumers of health services and actively engaged patients,” Friedman told the news source. “Studies show that healthy employees are happier, more productive, and spend less on medical care, a trio of benefits that helps employees, the company and society at large.”

According to the news source, an Empire BlueCross BlueShield survey of 489 employers, each with at least 1,000 employees, found 61 percent offered financial incentives to employees for taking part in a health risk appraisal, 40 percent offered incentives to employees who took part in a smoking cessation program and 45 percent offered incentives to employees who took part in a weight loss program.