Vitality in the Workplace

With all the lovely changes to healthcare, there was bound to be something I couldn’t ignore. Yesterday I sat in one of our many many conference rooms and learned about our new Vitality program. At first I was mildly excited, because I figured I would be able to easily earn points with all the running I do (did) and should do again. Then a giant wrench was thrown into my gears.

See, Vitality doesn’t play the “let’s make up for it” game. Vitality rewards consistent and overall health and wellness. Well crap. It doesn’t matter if I run 3 miles or 30, I only get so many points per DAY of working out. In a way this seems fair….in another, I’m not so OK with it all.

Let’s back up, why am I doing this program anyway? Well, our insurance rates changed a little for the coming year. My deductible was $400 now it will be $800! Ugg. With the Vitality program we earn points and points turn into dollars. By the end of the year I can earn up to $500 to use toward qualifying medical expenses. This means by being “healthy” I can bring my out of pocket expenses down to $300. Hopefully I won’t have any major medical issues this year though! 2013’s monies can be rolled over too and I can save up to $1000 on my Vitality card. This is rather sweet if you ask me and I will probably look into laser eye surgery again, hoping technology has advanced enough to let me qualify.

Now, how do I earn points? Every day things. I earn up to 10 points a day for working out. I earn points for taking online nutrition courses, for health quizzes, for being a non-smoker and just for signing up! I will get points for having my yearly checkups and health assessment numbers, I will earn more points if those number are in the optimal range. I was very annoyed because you will get a TON of points for being in a healthy BMI range. As in normally you will earn 100-200 points for something and for having a good BMI you are rewarded 1,000! Yikes! I don’t think I was ever in a healthy BMI range. Even when I wasn’t eating and a size 2 I was still a not in the “normal” BMI range. How weird is that nonsense? I supposed I’ll just earn points another way. Still, it’s irritating.

I haven’t decided if I will like this program or not. So far the only thing I like about it, is the fact my company is going to hopefully be buying a bunch of Fitbits and selling them to us at a reduced cost. At least it’ll keep me walking. The other few times this year I played the pedometer game it got me moving more.

Does anyone else have a company policy that rewards them for their healthy choices? Do you like it? Did it work for you to become healthier or stay healthier?

2 thoughts on “Vitality in the Workplace

  1. We have a program at my work called Live Well. There are typically a couple of challenges during the year (like a steps per day challenge). They offer health coaching, though I’ve never used it and feel like I get what I need from Google and friends. We don’t get cash like you, but some things are an extra paid vacation day or Fitbits, bikes, etc for the challenges. They also sponsor entry into a huge local 5K we have here every year and they also added a BoldRDash free entry this year as well – though I’m not sure that actually has anything to do with Live Well. We do also save $50/month by doing the annual health screening, otherwise they would charge us more each year as premiums go up. It’s got positives and negatives just like anything else. I think over time you’ll see if it works for you or not.

  2. This sounds really cool. I wish my place did something like this, but we’re a government entity, so no real extra perks in that area. I have to say I love my Fitbit, it rocks my socks off!

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