CVS Caremark joins AHA to promote health in the workplace

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark president and CEO Larry Merlo, along with CEOs from more than a dozen of America's largest corporations and organizations, announced on Tuesday the creation of the American Heart Association CEO Roundtable, an initiative to create a workplace culture that is focused on health.

As part of the announcement, the AHA also released results from a new online survey showing that while Americans overestimate their health — putting them at greater risk for heart disease and other serious illness — companies and their executive leadership can help.

"At CVS Caremark, we want to ensure that our employees are as healthy as can be," Merlo said. "We are excited to share ideas with the leaders participating in the roundtable and to learn some best practices from them as well."

The AHA CEO Roundtable is looking to lead by example to engage more than 2 million collective employees to create a healthier America — starting in the workplace. CVS Caremark will reach more than 200,000 colleagues alone nationwide.

The AHA CEO Roundtable initiative was informed by a new survey commissioned by the AHA, which found that employees are more likely to participate in and benefit from workplace health programs when encouraged by their CEO and senior management. The CEO Roundtable aims to improve health, in part, by engaging employees to make simple behavior changes — such as being more active and monitoring blood pressure — to reduce their risk of heart disease and other chronic illnesses.

CVS Caremark's "Plan for Health" offers incentives, including a lower paycheck contribution for colleagues who each year undergo a free health screening and complete an online health assessment. The program has helped many colleagues learn, some for the first time, that they have a chronic health condition that needs to be addressed, or they have the risk of developing a chronic health condition. In addition, CVS Caremark also provides free wellness services, such as screenings, flu shots and smoking-cessation counseling, at the company's more than 800 MinuteClinic locations. These services are available to all colleagues, regardless of whether they enroll in company-sponsored health coverage.

"As the nation's largest pharmacy healthcare provider, CVS Caremark is committed to helping people on their path to better health. This includes employees at our stores, MinuteClinics, distribution centers and corporate offices nationwide," Merlo said.

"Each year, at least 200,000 deaths caused by heart disease could be prevented through simple changes in health habits, and we need to tackle this issue head-on," said Nancy Brown, CEO of the AHA. "The CEO Roundtable is collaborating to reach more than 2 million employees to help make America heart-healthy."

The American Heart Association's CEO Roundtable comprises three co-chairs, including Henry Kravis, KKR & Co. L.P.; Terry Lundgren, Macy's.; and Nancy Brown, American Heart Association; and 19 members, including Mitch Barns, Nielsen; Bruce Broussard, Humana; David Calhoun, Blackstone; D. Scott Davis, United Parcel Service; Paul Diaz, Kindred Healthcare; Ken Frazier, Merck; Alex Gorsky, Johnson & Johnson; Milton Johnson, HCA; John Lederer, US Foods; Andrew Liveris, Dow Chemical; Mike Mahoney, Boston Scientific; Merlo, CVS Caremark; Denise Morrison, Campbell Soup Co.; George Paz, Express Scripts; Dr. Ralph Shrader, Booz Allen Hamilton; Randall Stephenson, AT&T; Bernard J. Tyson, Kaiser Permanente; Gregory Wasson, Walgreens; and David West, Big Heart Pet Brands.

Click here to view the survey results.

Login or Register to post a comment.