City of Houston Business Leadership and Medical Experts Team Up For Employee Health
New downtown Wellness Station checks key health risks in five minutes
Houston (April 10, 2008) – Houston city and business leadership and local medical experts recently unveiled a new "Know Your Numbers" Wellness Station downtown, in an effort to promote health awareness and give Houston's downtown workforce access to quick, free health information. The new wellness station is located on the tunnel level of 611 Walker, the City of Houston's Bob Lanier Public Works Building. It is the second of four stations coming online by the end of 2009.
Leadership from the City of Houston, Waste Management, Inc., Kelsey-Seybold Clinic and the Kelsey Research Foundation celebrated the official opening of the new wellness station. In just five minutes – confidentially and at no charge – visitors can know the numbers that help keep them healthy, including blood pressure and body mass index (BMI). Information is stored safely and securely online for convenient access and confidential tracking at lifeclinic.com.
Nearly one in three American adults—about 72 million people—have high blood pressure and approximately 119 million, or 64.5%, of U.S. adults are either overweight or obese. Many are unaware of health problems because they don't experience any symptoms and may not make preventive health a priority. In May 2007, Waste Management, Kelsey-Seybold and the Kelsey Research Foundation installed the first kiosk at the tunnel level under First City Tower, downtown, to encourage workers to know their numbers and associated health risks. Since installment, more than 12,000 visitors have checked their health numbers for weight, body mass index, body fat and blood pressure. As of first quarter 2008, 50 percent of visitors were found to have elevated blood pressure, putting them at significant risk for hypertension. Thirty-two percent were overweight and 22 percent were obese for their height and sex based on their body mass index.
Cutting Health Risks: Business, health care and civil leadership team up to offer downtown workers a free and easy way to monitor and reduce their health risks. Left to right: Bill Cole, safety officer, Waste Management; Dr. Kenneth Kennedy, managing physician and Family Medicine physician, Kelsey-Seybold Clinic – Houston Center; Candy Aldridge, acting director of Human Resources, City of Houston; and Dr. Ben Hoffman, chief medical officer, Waste Management cut the ribbon and officially open the newest Know Your Numbers Wellness Station on April 9.
Leading by example, Candy Aldridge, acting director of human resources for the City of Houston, takes five to check her blood pressure and body mass index, while Dr. Ben Hoffman, chief medical officer for Waste Management, awaits his turn to check and know his own health numbers.