NEW YORK, April 18 /PRNewswire/ -- The Guardian Life Insurance Company
of America (Guardian), a leading provider of employee and voluntary
benefits to small and mid-sized companies, today announced that its group
medical plan members now have greater access to discounts on alternative
medical treatments in 38 disciplines including yoga, Pilates, personal
training, massage/bodywork, nutritional counseling, acupuncture,
chiropractic care, homeopathy, hypnotherapy, qi gong, tai chi and holistic
Guardian's Complementary Alternative Medicine (CAM) discount program
provides up to 30 percent off the cost of services and treatment at over
36,000 providers. This program is an expansion of Guardian's alternative
medical benefits. Many Guardian medical plans already offered coverage for
alternative medicine procedures, but clients now have more discipline
choices, locations and providers.
"Alternative medicine, once considered fringe is now firmly part of the
mainstream," said Tim Bireley, vice president, Group Medical, Guardian. "We
live in a global, increasingly diverse society where people are exposed to
different methods of managing their health and wellness. Clients value the
opportunity to complement and enhance their traditional medical treatments
with alternative procedures."
The Complementary Alternative Medicine program was developed in
conjunction with Whole Health Networks. Guardian medical plan members are
able to access information about the practitioner network through the
Guardian Anytime website: (http://www.GuardianAnytime.com).
Through a link, they are connected to WholeHealth's award-winning
website with extensive information about:
* Healing Centers: Provides step-by-step health paths offering
comprehensive care and treatments developed by WholeHealth
* Healthy Kitchens: Offers knowledge about how food can heal as well as
taste great. Healthy Kitchen chefs share recipe makeovers and
introduce consumers to a world of healthier cooking.
* News and perspectives: Keeps members up to date on the latest research
in complementary alternative medicine.
* Reference library: Contains a comprehensive database of integrative
therapies, supplements, foods, and drugs, including a drug/herb
"checker" highlighting interactions between nutritional supplements
* Expert Opinions: Provides helpful opinions in response to frequently
asked member questions.
Members can also locate a practitioner by calling WholeHealth Networks
"The Complementary Alternative Medicine program coincides with several
trends that make this launch very timely," said Susan O'Connor, assistant
vice president, Group Medical, Guardian. "We are a more sedentary society
and obesity rates are on the rise. There is a lot of stress on the
so-called sandwich generation as they manage the affairs of their children
and parents while they prepare for their own retirement. And last, but not
least, longevity and an aging workforce continue to put pricing pressures
on our healthcare system. Taking a more holistic approach can help fight
obesity, reduce stress and expose people to new ways of promoting good
health and wellness -- and ultimately help reduce healthcare costs."
Added Bireley, "As Guardian marks the 50th anniversary of our Group
business the Complementary Alternative Medicine program underscores our
commitment to providing high quality, affordable products and services to
the small and midsize business market."
Guardian also offers its medical plan members health and wellness
resources, discounts to fitness centers, a 24-hour NurseLine(sm) and a
nurse outreach program.
For more information please contact your local Guardian Group
Representative or log on to http://www.GuardianLife.com to find a
representative near you.
Guardian is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its Group employee
benefit business. In honor of this milestone the company will issue a
series of educational surveys and reports to help employees, employers and
benefit decision makers better understand how they can jumpstart their
financial lives, improve recruitment, retention and employee satisfaction
by maximizing the use and power of their workplace coverage. The first
report released in the series is entitled, Benefits & Behavior: Spotlight
on Dental. The report can be found at http://www.GuardianDental.com
Founded in 1860, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New
York, NY (Guardian) is one of the largest mutual life insurance companies
in the United States. As of December 31, 2006, Guardian and its
subsidiaries had $39.5 billion in assets (on a consolidated statutory
basis). With more than 5,000 employees and 3,000 financial representatives,
as well as more than 80 agencies nationwide, Guardian and its subsidiaries
protect individuals, businesses, and their employees with life, disability,
health, long-term care, and dental insurance products, and offer 401(k),
annuities and other financial products and trust services. More information
about Guardian can be obtained at: http://www.GuardianLife.com.
SOURCE The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America