CoHealth Checkup is a monthly radio program that explores all topics around employee benefits -- with an emphasis on workplace wellness.


  • The Importance of Social Determinants of Health

    01/07/2015 Duração: 36min

    Our health is determined by where we live, work, play, and pray. These are our social determinants of health. They have a direct impact on our ability to afford safe housing and pay for healthy food, cover health care services, and access educational and economic opportunities and their benefits. As such, employment as well as the conditions of employment play a key role in determining health. Our guest for this topic is James S. Marks, MD, MPH. Jim is executive vice president, overseeing all program, communications, research, and policy activities in support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s vision to build a Culture of Health in America. 

  • GoodRx Saves Consumers -- and Employers -- $ on Pharmacy Expenses

    02/06/2015 Duração: 36min

    When GoodRx first came up on CoHealth's radar in 2012, the company's co-founder, Doug Hirsch, described the mission this way: "We want to mimic companies like Orbitz and create prescription-drug-price transparency so consumers are informed and can afford the medications they need."  Since then, GoodRx went on to win awards and accolades for its consumer-friendly interface (including CoHealth kudos for helping one of your co-hosts save $40 on a Rx). The company has also grown its services to include a transparent PBM for employers, a GoodRx plaform for physicians, and even a GoodRx search for pet pharmaceuticals. Join us to find out what's good about GoodRx for you and your employees.      

  • Ready for Retirement? Employees and Employers Think Not

    30/04/2015 Duração: 35min

    The numbers are grim. No matter what report you look at, the picture of retirement for U.S. workers is not pretty. Let's put it this way: There's no beach and umbrella drink. Instead, there are plans to recover from the Great Recession, plans to continue working, plans to ratchet back one's lifestyle. Join us as we talk with Laurie Rowley, the co-founder and president of The National Association of Retirement Plan Participants (NARPP) to find out how we got here and what employers can do to help their employees be better prepared.  NARPP is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to advocate for individual savers. Using research, partnerships, and innovative educational programs, NARPP is making financial information transparent and universally accessible to the 145 million working Americans saving for retirement. 

  • Is There Value to Health Risk Assessments?

    27/02/2015 Duração: 34min

    Health risk assessments form the backbone of many wellness programs. Their aim? Provide employers with meaningful data for designing and evaluating wellness programs and provide employees with meaningful data for assessing and tackling individual health risk. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation reports in its 2014 Employee Health Benefits Survey that 33% of firms (small and large) offer employees the opportunity to complete an assessment. More than half of these firms offer enticements to boost employees' completion rate, including financial incentives. A much smaller percentage makes completion of an assessment a requirement for benefits enrollment or the lack of participation in a wellness program a penalizable offense when an assessment identifies health risks.  The questions these assessments ask and their voluntary nature when incentives and penalties are used has raised questions within the EEOC, resulting in a number of suits.  This show delves into the intent and value of health risk assessments

  • The Impact of Better Compensation and Benefits Packages on the Workplace

    30/01/2015 Duração: 34min

    It seems as though all the talk in the human resources and employee benefits world today is about how employers are trying to "get out of the benefits business." The combination of the 2008 recession coupled with the passage of the Affordable Care Act stagnated employee compensation and began to erode employee benefits packages -- all in the name of cutting back on expenses and improving corporate profitability.  Then, on January 2, 2015, Bobby Fry, one of the owners of Bar Marco, in Pittsburgh, PA, tweeted that the restaurant would stop accepting gratuities from its patrons and, starting in April, move its 20 full-time employees to a $35,000 base salary and provide full health coverage, vacation days and private shares. The Internet exploded with interest.  About two weeks later, Hartford, CT-based Aetna announced it would raise it's minimum wage to $16/hour -- begining in April 2015. The company will also give approximately 7,000 employees access to health benefits next year that should lower their out-of

  • The 1st-Ever Open-Mic CoHealth Radio Show: Caregiving is the Topic

    07/01/2015 Duração: 45min

    CoHealth Checkup cohosts, fran melmed (lower-case letters intended) and Carol Harnett, finally get to do what they've always wanted to do: Host a Car-Talk-like radio show on anything and everything related to employer-provided health, wellness and benefits. There are no promises that this will be a polictically-correct program, although no person or company will be maligned or otherwise attacked via this 30-minute conversation.  They're going to start with the topic of employees involved with caregiving, but will open up the phone lines and invite your participation and questions. Join them!  

  • How to Bring Healthy, Delicious Food into the Workplace

    03/12/2014 Duração: 46min

    December is an interesting time to talk about healthy food choices. Once Americans are in the throes of the holiday season, we also tend to throw ourselves into the food and drink associated with the festivities. The outcome from all these celebrations is about 1.5 additional pounds for many of us. And, the majority never loses this weight. So, some of us enter the 2014 winter season approximately 15 pounds heavier than we started the 2004 season.  When we combine the concepts of eating and weight gain with employer-provided health care, we must also consider a growing requirement for employees to stay as healthy and fit as possible in order to access employer incentives or avoid employer penalties.  This CoHealth Checkup show will focus on a discussion with three people whose specialties include: clean food cooking, fresh fruit delivery to the workplace, and fresh ingredients and scratch cooking in employer-provided cafeterias. These leaders include cookbook author Terry Walters, Tom O'Connor of Seattle-ba

  • Take Two and Call Me in the Morning: The Rise of Online Second Opinions

    05/11/2014 Duração: 37min

    Second-opinion services are designed to instill confidence in employees and employers. Confidence in the accuracy of the diagnosis. Confidence in the planned treatment.  While second opinions are by no means new, delivering them virtually is. Today, medical centers like Cleveland Clinic and new companies such as 2nd.MD offer patients and concerned caregivers the opportunity to virtually consult with renowned specialists. Are these services an unecessary administrative burden without proven worth or do they insure quality care and better outcomes? Listen and learn as we talk with guest Clint Phillips, CEO and founder of 2nd.MD.

  • Keeping Up with the Growth of Voluntary Employee Benefits

    25/09/2014 Duração: 37min

    Over the last 20 years, the availability of voluntary benefits has grown from an anomaly to a strategy for the majority of employers. According Eastbridge Consulting Group, Inc., 54 percent of all employers provided at least one voluntary benefit in 2006. Six years later, that percentage has grown to 77 percent. For Eastbridge, the definition of voluntary benefits only includes life and health benefits where the employee pays 100 percent of the premiums through payroll deduction and there is no direct contribution by the employer. In the 25 years Eastbridge has followed voluntary benefits trends, life and disability insurance remain the first and second most popular products. But, people like Mike Zarrillo, Vice President of Voluntary Benefits and Business Development for AIG Benefit Solutions, believe an employer's voluntary benefits strategy can go beyond the Eastbridge classification. Zarrillo sees two other categories gaining in popularity in the workplace: value-added benefits such as legal services and

  • Cornell's Brian Wansink on Mindless Eating and Food Smarts

    03/09/2014 Duração: 31min

    Think of exercise as a fun or well-deserved break and you'll eat less afterward. Remove the tray from your cafeteria and you'll also remove the salad from your employees' lunch. Which foods you put first in your buffet line dictate what foods are taken. These surprising discoveries are only a few of those made by Professor Brian Wansink, the John Dyson Professor of Marketing and the Director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab in the Department of Applied Economics and Management at Cornell University, Ithaca NY.  

  • Health at Every Size: Is There Room in Today's Wellness Approach?

    28/04/2014 Duração: 32min

    The numbers are staggering. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 35% of adults aged 20 and over were overweight in 2008, and 11% were obese. More than 40 million children under the age of five were overweight in 2011. And overweight and obesity are the fifth leading cause of death. Employers are grappling with the impact of this condition in a variety of ways, from programs and benefits designed to support weight management to changes in the built environment that encourage healthier food choices and increased physical activity. Employers have also turned toward incentives and penalties tied to body mass index (BMI), a population-level measure of overweight and obesity. On today's show we welcome Dr. Jonathan Robison. Dr. Robison holds a doctorate in health education/exercise physiology and a master of science in human nutrition from Michigan State University, where he teaches in the Nutrition and Physiology Departments as an Adjunct Assistant Professor. He's served as co-editor of the journal H

  • Mindfulness Comes to Work: From Science to Practical Application

    05/03/2014 Duração: 38min

    Mindfulness, mindfulness meditation and mindful living appear to be part of a growing trend for 2014 and beyond. Celebrities and CEOs alike are publicly sharing their reliance on mindfulness meditation as a way to cope with their lives. Mindfulness was a featured topic at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January and included daily mindfulness meditation practice before the start of each day. Join CoHealth Checkup as our guests, Lynn Kirby, a Temple University School of Medicine researcher on the effects of stress, and Cheryl Jones, a Jon Kabat-Zinn mindfulness-based-stress-reduction-trained coach and Aetna's wellness clinical program design lead, discuss the science and parctical application behind mindfulness -- in and outside of the workplace.

  • RAND's Soeren Mattke Discusses: "Do Wellness Programs Produce a ROI? "

    29/01/2014 Duração: 31min

    The wellness industry is abuzz again with the debate on whether employer-based wellness programs produce a return on investment. The RAND report released in mid-January 2014 analyzed 7 years of data from Pepsico's wellness and disease management strategy. The verdict? Disease management programs drove the lion's share of the ROI. RAND's Dr. Soeren Mattke joins CoHealth Checkup to review RAND's research on workplace wellness programs and what employers need to consider and expect when considering these initiatives. 

  • Buffers and Magnifiers: Attitudes and Events Trigger Health Vulnerabiltity

    11/12/2013 Duração: 34min

    Financial stress, caregiving, job woes. These life obstacles are unavoidable, but how we cope with and address them, and who we have available to help, can make a monumental difference in our outlook and health. On this show we're joined by Alexandra Drane, founder and chief visionary officer and chair of the board at the Eliza Corporation. Eliza Corporation's new tool The Vulnerability Index™ measures both the magnitudes of an individual’s or population’s life obstacles, as well as the balance of magnifiers and buffers which influence one’s ability to cope with life obstacles. We'll discuss the evidence they gathered that shows how this tool is a useful predictor of health and productivity.

  • What's Prevention Got to Do with Employee Wellness?

    03/12/2013 Duração: 38min

    David L. Katz, MD, MPH is an internationally renowned authority on nutrition, weight control, and the prevention of chronic disease. He's an author, advisor, patent holder, researcher, editor-in-chief, medical educator, and much more. Dr. Katz devotes his considerable knowledge, talents and energy to helping us slash our risk of disease. During this show we explore what companies are currently doing that help and hurt these efforts. 

  • Physicians Evaluate Employees Online, at Home and at Work

    06/11/2013 Duração: 40min

    If employers want to maintain or reduce healthcare spending, one of the best places to start is with employees’ use of hospitals. The long-time mantra in addressing health care costs is to keep employees out of emergency rooms, avoid unnecessary hospital admissions and, if an employee or their dependent is admitted, get them out of the hospital as quickly as possible.  A growing number of employers and insurance companies are using different strategies to direct employees to the best care, including concierge medicine and virtual-physician-diagnostic services for minor medical conditions. Join the CoHealth community as we talk with Alan Roga (StatDoctors) and Natalie Hodge (PersonalMedicinePlus) -- two physicians who are changing how and where physicians meet patients, including via virtual, computer-based visits, mobile apps and concierge services.

  • Communicating Health

    02/10/2013 Duração: 33min

    Our guest on today's show knows how to communicate health. Derek Flanzraich, CEO and founder of, has millions of readers flocking to the site for guidance on eating, fitness, sleep, and more. Listen in as Derek shares how has created science-backed health communications without the science (or corporate) jargon...or the finger wag.

  • Tackling the Challenge of Stress and Depression at Work

    04/09/2013 Duração: 44min

    According to Charlotte Rampell's NYT's article, the number of Americans who receive Social Security Disability Insurance for mental disorders doubled during the past 15 years. Employees with serious mental illness earn about $16,000 less than their mentally well counterparts. And many mentally ill workers, who are more likely to miss work, also suffer from what social scientists call presenteeism — the opposite of absenteeism — in which they are very likely to be less productive on the job. Join CoHealth as we discuss workplace mental health with our guests David Whitehouse and David Ballard.

  • Carrot Vs Stick: The Penn State Wellness Controversy

    14/08/2013 Duração: 39min

    Employers are rapidly moving away from incentives and toward penalties as they grapple with creating and supporting healthier behaviors. Employees incur these when an action isn't taken, and at an increasing number of companies, the penalties are assessed when employees don't meet certain health standards (BMI, cholesterol, etc.). According to the 2013 National Business Group on Health/Towers Watson survey on employer practices, 16% of employers already tie incentives to health standards and another 31% expect to do so. On today's show we'll talk about this shift with one of the foremost researchers in the area of workplace wellness, Dr. Dee Edington. We'll also be joined by a professor who penned a call to arms against Penn State's $100 a month surcharge, Matthew Woessner.

  • Employee Wellness: There's An App For That

    07/08/2013 Duração: 35min

    The Technology & Employee Wellness Survey conducted by ShapeUp and context in 2012 made it clear employers were gearing up for health technology adoption. 54% were considering the use of sensors and devices. 56% were ready for other mobile-based solutions. Today's guests offer such solutions to employers and their employees.  Martha Wofford is the head of the CarePass platform at Aetna. CarePass is a platform that helps Aetna members and nonmembers choose popular mobile health apps and use them to track their health improvement. Derek Newell is the CEO of Jiff, a digital health technology company that recently announced a partnership with Towers Watson on a consumer-driven platform for employers and health care organizations. Join us as we talk with Martha and Derek about how employers can use the technology we love to increase our health engagement and improve our health.   

página 1 de 2