North Shore-LIJ and ProHealth Target Employee Wellness With New Fitness Facility

Dec 17, 2010, 15:51 ET from North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System

GREAT NECK, N.Y., Dec. 17, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The North Shore-LIJ Health System and ProHealth Care Associates LLP today announced the opening of "Vivo Health Fitness at ProHealth," a 15,000-square-foot health club located at 3 Delaware Drive in the Lake Success Quadrangle. The center, part of North Shore-LIJ's new push into the wellness business to meet the anticipated demands of federal health reform, features exercise equipment, aerobics and spin classes, a wellness spa and programs like yoga, stress management and nutrition seminars taught by clinicians from North Shore-LIJ.

With health reform's focus on improving public health and disease prevention, North Shore-LIJ is entering the community wellness arena with initial offerings targeted to its workforce of 42,000+ and their families. With 15 hospitals and other facilities on Long Island, Queens, Manhattan and Staten Island, the health system plans on opening additional fitness centers throughout the region, so employees and their families can take advantage of this benefit at convenient locations throughout the region.

More than 16,000 North Shore-LIJ employees work within 2 1/2 miles of Vivo Health Fitness, so the facility's convenient location is expected to be a draw for many. Employees and their families can join the fitness center for a discounted monthly membership fee of $40 (non-employees pay $65 a month).

In addition to offering discounted fitness memberships, North Shore-LIJ is introducing several other employee-focused wellness initiatives in 2011. During North Shore-LIJ's recent benefits enrollment period, employees had the opportunity to accept three "wellness pledges" to lower the cost of their health insurance premiums. Employees could pledge not to smoke (or quit if they currently smoke), have an annual physical exam and complete a health risk assessment online.  For each pledge made, employees will receive a $10 credit - a total savings of $30 per paycheck or $780 annually.

In addition, North Shore-LIJ is helping employees and their families combat childhood obesity as part of a new partnership with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation- a joint venture between the American Heart Association and the Clinton Foundation. Beginning in January, North Shore-LIJ employees concerned about their child's health can bring them to the Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York for consults with pediatricians specializing in weight management, followed by up to four visits with a community based nutritionist. All costs - including co-pays - will be covered by the health system and North Shore-LIJ's health insurance plans, helping parents to address a child's weight problem and prevent more serious potential health problems later in life.

"We view all of these initiatives - Vivo Health Fitness, the wellness pledges and Alliance for a Healthier Generation - as important first steps in our commitment to wellness and changing the way we deliver healthcare," said North Shore-LIJ President and CEO Michael Dowling. "We will be implementing additional health and wellness activities and programs for employees and the community-at-large in the coming months and years."

Among the unique features of Vivo Health Fitness at ProHealth is a computerized system called "FitLinxx" that enables members to track their progress. Health club members are entitled to two complimentary sessions with a personal trainer, who develops an exercise plan based on a health assessment performed on each individual and his/her fitness goals - to lose weight, gain muscle, etc. The workout plan is entered into FitLinxx, which is networked wirelessly to touch-screen monitors attached directly to exercise equipment. Every time they use a machine, members can type in a personal passcode that links them to the fitness regimen developed with their trainer, including information like how much resistance should be on the machine and the number of repetitions they perform. FitLinxx coaches users through their workout for better form and safety, and tracks their progress.

About North Shore-LIJ Health System

The nation's second-largest, non-profit, secular healthcare system, North Shore-LIJ is an integrated academic health system that delivers world-class clinical care throughout the New York metropolitan area, pioneering research at The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research and a visionary approach to medical education, highlighted by the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine. The winner of the National Quality Forum's 2010 National Quality Healthcare Award, North Shore-LIJ cares for people at every stage of life at 15 hospitals, including two specialty centers nationally renowned for their pediatric and psychiatric care - Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York and Zucker Hillside Hospital. The health system's 110 residency and fellowship programs serve as a training ground for more than 1,200 future physicians, many of whom hone their skills at North Shore-LIJ's Patient Safety Institute - one of the nation's largest patient simulation centers. As evidence of its commitment to community health and patient-focused research, Feinstein Institute scientists and North Shore-LIJ physicians enroll more than 1,200 people every year in clinical research studies. North Shore-LIJ's owned hospitals and long-term care facilities house about 5,600 beds, employ more than 10,000 nurses and have affiliations with more than 9,000 physicians. Its workforce of about 42,000 is the largest on Long Island and the ninth-largest in New York City.  For more information, go to www.northshorelij.com.

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SOURCE North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System



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