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American Heart Association names fit-friendly worksites in WNY

BY: Metro Source Staff | April 03, 2013

BUFFALO - The American Heart Association recognized eight Western New York organizations as fit-friendly worksites for promoting physical activity and health in the workplace for the most recent application period. Through the fit-friendly company designation, the American Heart Association works locally with area employers on their wellness and health programs.

More than 10,500 Western New Yorkers are currently working for companies who have received the American Heart Association designation. The fit-friendly worksite program is a catalyst for positive change in the workforce that helps companies make their employees’ health and wellness a top priority.

BlueCross and BlueShield of WNY has been recognized as a first-time platinum-level fit-friendly worksite by the American Heart Association for helping employees eat better and move more. The American Heart Association also congratulates first time recipients of the gold-level designation to the Alliance Advisory Group and the Buffalo Cardiology and Pulmonary Associates. GEICO; Jamestown Engine Plant/Cummins, Inc.; Praxair, Inc.; Rich Products Corporation and Univera Healthcare achieved renewal of their gold-level fit-friendly worksite status.

Platinum-level employers offer employees physical activity options in the workplace; increase healthy eating options at the worksite; promote a wellness culture in the workplace; implement at least nine criteria outlined by the American Heart Association in the areas of physical activity, nutrition and culture; and demonstrate measurable outcomes related to workplace wellness.

Area companies that received the designation in the Buffalo-Niagara region for the prior application period of July 31, 2012 were Horizon Village, Mercy Hospital and United Healthcare.

The American Heart Association fit-friendly recognition helps change corporate cultures by motivating employees to start walking, which has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity.

The local companies join more than 2,200 organizations that have been recognized nationally from this most recent award period.

To view the complete list of the fit-friendly companies or to apply for recognition, visit startwalkingnow.org. Applications are available to download and should be completed before the next deadline of July 31. For more information about the fit-friendly worksite program and how it is helping to improve the health of Americans, visit startwalkingnow.com or call 614-1980.

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