NORTH BAY -- As wellness emerges as a key business strategy in containing health care costs, questions often arise on what, exactly, the term means -- what works for one company or one industry won't necessarily work for another, and how do you define wellness to employees? More importantly, how do you get a staff to fully buy-in to the concept?
These are among the topics that will be explored at the North Bay Business Journal's Health Care Conference, which will focus on corporate wellness and will recognize the North Bay's healthiest companies.The conference will be from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m. Nov. 30 at the Hyatt Vineyard Creek in Santa Rosa. Cost is $49 per person or $510 for a table of 10. To register, call 707-521-5264 or register online.Health Care Conference ReportQuestions for conference speakers
David Sobel, M.D., M.P.H., medical director, Regional Health Education, Kaiser Permanente Northern California
Walt Mickens, chief executive officer, Queen of the Valley Medical Center
Gary Greensweig, chief medical officer, St. Jospeh Health System--Sonoma County
Jill Kinney, managing director, Clubsource Development Partners LLC, Co-founder, Club One Inc.
Mike Purvis, chief administrative officer, Sutter Medical Center, Santa Rosa
Scott Setterlund, employer relations specialist, Sutter Health
Marin-Sonoma IPA, Health Net offering Medicare Advantage planThe Marin-Sonoma IPA has joined with Health Net to provide Medicare Advantage plans for Sonoma County seniors in the wake of a coverage agreement between Sutter Health and UnitedHealthcare.Healthiest Companies to be recognized at Nov. 30 conferenceThe Business Journal’s inaugural Healthiest Companies Recognition Awards will be presented to 14 companies at its Health Care Conference.
Dr. David Sobel, medical director of regional health education for Kaiser Permanente Northern California, will be the keynote speaker.
Alena Wall, executive director of the Northern California Center for Well Being, will help the Business Journal present the inagural Healthiest Companies Recognition Awards. She's no stranger to wellness, and has been at the forefront of Sonoma County's efforts to become the healthiest county in California -- a distinction already held by Marin County, according to annual rankings by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.
The concept of wellness has been embraced increasingly by employers, she said.
"Within the past five years, large scale employers in Sonoma County have brought wellness programming in-house," Ms. Wall said. "Really solid return on investment data has been made available. This information has facilitated local companies providing comprehensive wellness services at the workplace."
Scott Setterlund, employer relations specialist for Sutter Health, who will be speaking at the conference, echoed this notion, noting that a basic wellness program can bring a 3-to-1 return on investment. A more sophisticated, outcome-based program can yield a return on investment as high as 12-to-1, he said.
One key element, Mr. Setterlund said, is for c-level executives to lead by example, which will in turn provide an actual reference point for wellness.
"It's like a team," he said, with the CEO in charge.
The conference wellness panel will also feature as presenters Jill Kinney, managing director of Clubsource Development and co-founder of Club One Inc. and Dr. Gary Greensweig, chief medical officer at St. Joseph Health System--Sonoma County. A separate panel will include Mike Purvis, chief administrative officer of Sutter Medical Center of Santa Rosa, and Walt Mickens, CEO of Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa.