|Aetna Health Improvement Idea Relies On Social Networking Team
Aetna is turning to online social networking to
encourage its customers to eat well and stay fit. To that end Aetna
Health Connections developed a program, "Get Active," modeled after its
own "Get Active" Aetna employee program that boasted 57 percent of its
more than 20,000 employees participating in 2009.
Aetna’s new program is powered by "Shape Up the
Nation," a Providence, RI-based wellness company, relying on social
networks to promote healthy living. "Research shows that trusted social
networks can be harnessed to encourage healthy behaviors and increase
the likelihood for success through peer motivation, support, and
accountability," said Mike Zani, Shape Up The Nations CEO.
People know they have to maintain a healthier lifestyle,
from eating to exercising more, "but many people don’t know where
to begin and the thought of doing it alone is often daunting," said Dr.
Lonny Reisman, Aetna’s chief medical officer. "Introducing a
program to employees that includes a group dynamic has proven effective
for motivating Aetna’s own employees to get healthy."
Aetna employee, Kip Hill, said, "I love the program
because it makes you think about how to fit exercise into your busy
schedule and if you continue to do it all year long, you really see a
difference."In the program for almost four years, it has helped him
lose 120 pounds through nutrition and exercise.
Address: Aetna Inc., 151 Farmington Ave., Hartford, CT 06156; (860) 273-0123, www.aetna.com.