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Health Fairs Keep Employees Focused on Wellness

Health Fairs Keep Employees Focused on Wellness

Conducting a health fair on company premises is a perfect way to support your corporate commitment to health and fitness and emphasize a culture of workplace wellness. Health fairs stimulate healthy behaviors and offer preventative health information. Fairs help employers manage insurance claims (decreasing co-pay fees for routine office visits/flu shots/cold remedies) as well as provide employees a more efficient way to manage their bank of paid leave, taking minutes vs. hours away from their jobs to attend to health needs.

The first step in setting up a health fair is to determine the focus and purpose – hold it in May during National Employee Health and Fitness Month, or plan for the fall to coincide with open enrollments? With regard to the purpose, is it to solely administer flu shots, or to enlist healthcare professionals to conduct employee health screenings (such as cholesterol, blood pressure, and bone density)? Do you plan to provide treatments for routine colds? Will you invite local fitness clubs to discuss memberships and offer discounts on sign up?

Selecting a location to accommodate large groups of employees is next on the planning list. Will it be inside or outside? When (dates and times) will it be held? How will you communicate the event? What will the health professionals need in way of disposal containers, tables, chair, other equipment? How should the area be set up for administering shots/conducting screenings?

Budgets and attendance need to be estimated and conveyed to participating vendors. Clinics may volunteer their services at no cost, but charge to administer shots and tests. Fees may be covered by insurance. Discounts from vendors may be available. Be sure to explore all options to help offset costs.

Special activities such as demonstrations from fitness vendors (Zumba, Tai Chi, Kickboxing) will kick your health fair up a notch and create a secondary level of interest for those who wouldn’t have planned to participate in the first place. Massage therapists giving 5 minute shoulder and neck treatments will have everyone signed up to attend! And samples of healthy snacks and health-conscious meals (complete with recipes) add an extra bit of flair to up your participation level.

What about seminars? Definitely a plus. Short, 20 minute segments on: weight control, smoking cessation, stress management, time management, nutrition and health, and quick and easy exercises to do while seated at a desk, will get the masses moving, no pun intended.

And don’t forget about evaluations. Get feedback from the healthcare team. Survey employees through verbal or written feedback. Determine if you met your objectives and see what you might want to change for future fairs.