News | February 24, 2007

ACOEM And IBI Partner To Promote Health And Productivity Management In The Workplace

San Francisco — The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) and the Integrated Benefits Institute (IBI) partnership is designed to promote broadly the principles of integrated health and productivity management (HPM) in workplaces around the world.

Integrated HPM is a business concept that places major emphasis on the promotion of health, wellness, absence/disability management, health policy and interventions in an effort to measurably improve employees' quality of life and work productivity. Providing health, wellness and illness prevention and management to employees is a wise human-capital investment which, through cutting the need for medical and absence-related expenses, can contribute to bottom-line returns.

The ACOEM/IBI collaboration offers a variety of HPM educational offerings including live, onsite training programs, online webinar instruction and other online HPM resources. The organizations conducted two trainings in 2006 in conjunction with their own annual meetings. In light of the success of these programs, the organizations are offering HPM Clinic: Moving Health to the Bottom Line around the country in a series of standardized, one-day formats as well as in customized live or web-based modules from two hours up to six hours.

The ACOEM-IBI offerings incorporate the latest in research and practical applications from the leading physician and business experts. "Our partnership brings together the best of two worlds essential to achieving HPM results," said Thomas Parry, Ph.D., president of IBI. "Successfully implementing HPM for the workforce requires a strong understanding of health and medical outcomes as well as integration of fundamental human resource and benefits practices."

Dr. Tee L. Guidotti, president of ACOEM, noted that the educational offerings will benefit workers and employers alike. "Good health and productivity at work means good health and a better life at home. Through these educational programs we will give health, management, and human resources professionals the tools to make practical steps forward in the real world of work and life. Health and productivity is all about business gains being compatible with a high quality of working life and satisfaction."

The offerings by IBI and ACOEM feature as faculty some of the most prominent proponents of HPM in the nation. "One of our main goals is bringing the concepts of HPM to life – making them accessible in the real world of everyday work. The instructors and leaders who develop our resources know HPM because they developed those programs in their own workplace," Dr. Parry said.

In addition to participation in the course development by expert ACOEM and IBI volunteers, course development management and oversight was funded through unrestricted grants from suppliers of benefits services and programs including CIGNA, Genentech, Matria Healthcare, Novartis, and Thomson-Medstat. John Riedel, a pioneer in HPM training, is the course director for the HPM Clinic and brings years of training expertise to the program.

As business leaders promote healthier workers and manage absence across traditional benefits programs, they have realized improvements in health-related productivity. A focus on HPM will help employers understand what they are getting for their healthcare investments – a healthier and more productive workforce. "This productivity focus establishes a built-in value proposition that resonates with company executives and employees alike," said ACOEM's Guidotti.