Alexander Says To Improve Americans’ Health, Connect Wellness Programs And Employer Insurance

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander on Thursday said, “if we really want to focus on improving Americans’ health, why not connect the consensus on wellness to the insurance policies that 178 million Americans get from their job.” 

“There is remarkable consensus that a healthy lifestyle leads to longer and better lives, and reduces the nation’s health care costs,” said Senator Alexander. “Wellness programs that reward behaviors such as exercising, maintaining a healthy weight, or quitting smoking have the potential to save money and improve participants’ health.” 

Senator Alexander continued: “The Cleveland Clinic has said if you achieve at least four ‘normal’ measures of good health, such as a healthy body mass index, cholesterol and blood pressure, and you see a primary care physician regularly and keep immunizations up to date, you will avoid chronic disease about 80 percent of the time. This is important because we spend more than 84 percent of our health care costs, or about $2.6 trillion, treating chronic diseases.

“About 60 percent of insured Americans get their health insurance on the job, so it is hard to think of a better way to make a bigger impact on the health of millions of Americans than to connect the consensus about wellness to employer-based insurance for 178 million people.” 

The Senate health committee on Thursday held a hearing to look at what can be done to encourage people to make healthier lifestyle choices to help prevent serious illnesses and reduce health care costs. 

Under the Affordable Care Act, employers can offer premium discounts to employees who participated in wellness programs. 

Senator Alexander said, “It was one of the only parts of the ACA on which nearly everyone agreed.  Today’s hearing is about how successful that has been and what we can do to make it easier for employers to encourage their employees to lead healthier lives and reduce health care costs.” 

Senator Alexander’s opening statement is available here.




Parkridge Health System Hosts Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Reunion

Parkridge East Hospital will host a NICU reunion Saturday, Aug. 18, from 9-11 a.m. The carnival-themed event will celebrate the families who received care from their level III NICU.  “The babies we treat in our NICU are born prematurely – some as early as 24 weeks – or newborns that require special care,” said Christina Chadwick, director of the Parkridge East NICU. “We ... (click for more)

CHI Memorial Mobile Mammography Coach To Visit Chattanooga

CHI Memorial’s mobile health coach will provide mammography screenings at The Howard School, 2500 Market St., on Saturday, Aug. 25 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.; and at Partners in Care, 5616 Brainerd Road in Brainerd, on Friday, Aug. 31 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. "All women should have one screening mammogram between the ages of 35-40. After age 40, a screening mammogram is recommended every ... (click for more)

City Looking For Proposals For Floating Restaurant, Riverboat Excursions

The city is seeking proposals for an exclusive agreement for a berthing agreement that would include a floating restaurant and a vessel for river excursions. Officials said the operation would be another enhancement for the downtown riverfront. The city is seeking an entrepreneur who would enter into a 10-year contract with options up to 10 years more. Officials said, "The ... (click for more)

Soddy Daisy Man Who Robbed 2 Credit Union Branches While Unarmed Gets 4-Year Federal Prison Sentence

A Soddy Daisy man who robbed two credit union branches while unarmed has been sentenced to serve four years in federal prison. Jeffrey Rutherford, 35, appeared before Judge Travis McDonough. Authorities said on Aug. 19, 2016, Rutherford entered the Comtrust Federal Credit Union on Gunbarrel Road while dressed all in black and with his face covered. He approached two tellers ... (click for more)

It’s Time To Restore A Valuable Tool To Prosecutors By Fixing The ACCA

Violent crime rates in our country tripled from 1964 to 1980.  Robbery tripled, murder doubled, and aggravated assault nearly tripled.  This was an alarming time for communities across our nation.   To fight back, Congress passed the Armed Career Criminal Act in 1984, giving federal prosecutors a powerful new tool to deal with the growing rate of violent crime.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

I have to admit I am still laughing over the fact over 350 newspapers ganged up against President Trump’s stance on Thursday that the media is biased towards his administration. In a concerted effort these newspaper editors proved Trump to be exactly right. How in the name of common sense could any man, event, or natural phenomena cause every newspaper to unite is such a laughable ... (click for more)