Chamber Insider Blog

Loudoun County Gov. Employees Puts Workplace Wellness into Practice

-Written by Christy Blake, Loudoun County, Virginia Economic Development

As an employer, the Loudoun County Government offers workplace wellness initiatives to support its employees in areas of health awareness, preventive health actions and healthy life habits.

It’s no secret that Loudoun County is one of the fastest growing counties in the U.S.  Over the years, as our county continued to thrive and grow, the county government also grew to meet the rising resident needs.  This resulted in unprecedented increases in all types of costs, including health care costs for the county employees and families.  In order to control spending without reducing the coverage, county leadership decided to embrace a wellness approach.   

So, in 2005, in coordination with CIGNA, county health insurance administration staff developed a comprehensive wellness program set forth to change the culture of health care from crisis care and unhealthy choices to prevention and healthy lifestyles.   Since then, we’re pleased to report that we’ve seen a number of benefits from our wellness program including:

  • Increased employee engagement in health improvement programs
  • A considerable shift in our employees’ health status from high risk to medium and low risk
  • A significant medical cost savings – $1.6 million!!
  • And, we’ve earned a number of accolades along the way!  We’ve earned five American Heart Association Fit Friendly Company Awards (Gold Recognition from 2008 – 2010, and Platinum Recognition in 2011 and 2012!)

So, what does our wellness program entail?  Throughout the year our employees can participate in wellness classes, workshops, health challenges and other activities.  As incentive to participate in healthy activities, employees are rewarded with prizes sponsored by the Wellness Rewards Program.

The county offers a Passport to Wellness to document wellness activities and log earned points.   Employees enrolled in the Loudoun County Health Plan can receive a $250 cash reward by participating in the Loudoun County Employee Wellness Rewards Program.  Each enrolled employee is eligible to receive points for routine wellness visits and a variety of other wellness related activities.  To qualify for the reward amount, employees must complete and/or update the Cigna (Zensey) Health Assessment as well as the Passport to Wellness.

The Wellness Corner is also accessible to county employees year round, which provides varying health resources that keep our employees engaged throughout their journey.  We also have a team of “Wellness Ambassadors” to help engage our employees and internally market these unique offerings.

The Loudoun County Government is excited to support and participate in the chamber’s 2016 Healthy Business Challenge!  We look forward to learning from the scorecard, implementing new ideas, and bolstering our amazing wellness program.   We also look forward to highlighting and promoting some the innovative initiatives that were are doing for and with our own employees!

Source: Cigna via Loudoun County Department of Human Resources, “A Case for Wellness Loudoun County Government Case Study,” March 2013.

-Written by Christy Blake, Loudoun County, Virginia Economic Development


Want to Learn More?

– Join Our Committee!  The Chamber’s Health & Wellness Committee is a dedicated group of local professionals with a passion for wellness!  We spearhead the Annual Healthy Business Challenge and equip chamber members with important health-related information and valuable wellness resources.  Our goal is to engage employers, convey the importance of wellness in the workplace, and cultivate a thriving, healthy community.  Come see what we’re all about – we meet on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 10 a.m. at the chamber office.

– Be Informed.  Interested in creating a culture of wellness within your company, but not sure where to begin?  Sign up to receive our Healthy Tips & Tricks emails.  You’ll also receive updates for upcoming events, the Healthy Business Challenge, and the latest committee news and happenings.  You can also find us on Facebook and LinkedIn!

– Join the Challenge!  The Chamber’s Healthy Business Challenge is for everyone!  No matter your company size, you can be recognized for your wellness efforts!  The award will garner you company exposure on the chamber’s Web site, in eNewsletters, and in local newspapers.  Not to mention, the placard and physical award are great for PR and employee recruitment!  The 2016 Healthy Business Challenge is Now Open!