The State Worker

Read details of the California’s ‘Healthier U’ program

This week’s State Worker column takes a quick overview of “Healthier U,” an experiment in promoting wellness among state employees at the East End Complex in Sacramento.

The stakes are enormous, since the state confronts an estimated $72 billion in future medical spending for retiree medical care. A healthier workforce would consume fewer medical services and bring down the costs if providing care to current employees and retirees.

Print space limited how much we could write about the program, such as how it attempts to make exercise a fun group effort with “Sneaker Fridays” that encourage workers to take an end-of-week stroll, hula hoop classes and meditation groups.

But you, oh faithful followers of The State Worker blog, can get into the details here – and register your thoughts about Healthier U’s long-term future.

Click here for a summary of Healthier U. This link opens a progress report for the May 2013 to December 2014 period. And here’s an interesting 2012 Urban Institute report on potential savings to CalPERS through preventing avoidable chronic illnesses.

So what to you think? What impact will Healthier U have on state employees over the long term? Take our poll.