OccMed and Wellness Department
By partnering with area businesses to provide onsite services, the OccMed and Wellness team helps employers reduce absenteeism, increase productivity, improve employee health and promote healthy lifestyles.
Frequently a company contacts one of PNS’s clinics which provide pre-employment physicals and workers’ comp. Through the relationship established between the clinic staff and the company, the OccMed and Wellness Department steps in to provide onsite services such as drug screens and random drug screens, meeting both DOT and Non-DOT guidelines, as well as wellness screenings. Onsite services have been conducted in available areas – from closets to board rooms.
The wellness screenings usually consist of several components: either a blood draw or finger stick to check cholesterol and glucose levels, a weight management program, and a lengthy health questionnaire. When screenings are conducted during the fall, flu shots may be added. Using the results from the tests and the information gathered through the questionnaire, health risks are identified both individually and as an employee group. Results are reviewed with participants through wellness counseling. When necessary, recommendations are made for the employee to see a PCP or visit one of PNS’s locations. If an employee is unable to attend their company’s onsite screening, the employee will come to the OccMed and Wellness Department for services. The PNS Wellness Coordinator provides the company with their biggest risks based on the questionnaire responses, and then develops the most effective plan for that specific employee group. Director Joe Perez emphasizes that these are wellness assessments rather than diagnoses – guidelines of blood levels – what is high or low and what needs attention.
In the upcoming months, the OccMed and Wellness team has several organization-wide screenings planned. When these are underway, a typical day of screenings begins at 5:30am where the team meets at their department, located at I-27 Medical Center, to gather equipment and supplies in order to be onsite by 6:30am to start the screenings at 7am. Because employees fast for the blood work, the department conducts screenings in the morning. Some of the companies they screen have locations across the state and into New Mexico. Conducting wellness screenings for these groups means traveling and being away from home as many as four and five nights at a time. Last year, 3,300 people received services from the department.
Registration for PNS’s employee health screenings, administered by Bravo Wellness, is underway through August 1st. Testing begins on July 15th. In 2012, 50% of PNS employees participated and in 2013, 60% of our employees participated. This year’s goal is to screen 65% of PNS employees. Currently the Department is conducting a Healthy Habits Campaign with a focus of being healthier by making healthier choices.
The Department also conducts random drug screens year round and provides flu shots from September through December. In a highly competitive market, the Department’s reputation of providing quality, dependable care, has been instrumental in maintaining many of the same clients since the Department’s inception four to five years ago.