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BIRMINGHAM (June 19, 2012) – Children’s of Alabama today announced it has pledged support for, and will participate in, the fourth annual National Employee Wellness Month. This month-long initiative helps business leaders learn from best practices of how companies are developing successful strategies around prevention and good health to engage employees in healthy behavior change and reduce healthcare costs. 

More than 90companies across the United States and more than 40,000 of their employees have pledged their support to this important workplace wellness initiative. National Employee Wellness Month is sponsored by Virgin HealthMiles, in partnership with the Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance, the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease and WorldatWork.

Out-of-control healthcare costs are a board-level issue for virtually every U.S. organization.  Costs continue to rise more than 10 percent annually, with no end in sight.  And employees are feeling it, too, paying more of their out of pockets for higher premiums.  Forward-thinking organizations are taking action to control rising healthcare costs by focusing on prevention as a proven strategy to counter the trend. National Employee Wellness Month highlights the powerful role the workplace can play in helping employees make healthy behavior changes, resulting in a sustainable impact on costly lifestyle-related disease. 

Children’s is participating in National Employee Wellness Month alongside other leading U.S. organizations that are leading by example to support employee health and wellness.  During the month, companies like Children’s will actively promote prevention and good health throughout its organization, and help its employees understand the impact and importance of healthy lifestyles. Children’s kicked off Wellness Month with the on-site opening of The Farm Stand.  Employees enthusiastically lined up to purchase local fruits and vegetable direct from local producers. Other activities include Lunch n’ Learns,   Hydration and Step Challenges sponsored by Virgin HealthMiles   as well as a variety of wellness incentives offered through the company’s myWellness Rewards program.  

“Healthcare workers tend to be “nurturers”.  Unfortunately, their focus on caring for others often results in neglect of their own well-being said Joni Blakney, Director of Human Resources. “At Children’s, we are committed to encouraging and supporting our employees as they tackle those tough behavior modifications that lead to improved health.”  

Find more information and resources about workplace wellness, and suggested ideas to celebrate National Employee Wellness Month at

Children’s of Alabama has provided specialized medical care for ill and injured children across the state and throughout the southeastern U.S. since 1911. Children’s offers inpatient and outpatient services across its Russell Campus on Birmingham’s historic Southside with additional outpatient surgery and diagnostic imaging services provided at Children’s South and Children’s on 3rd. Primary care is provided at more than a dozen offices in communities across central and north Alabama. Last year, families from every county in Alabama made more than 600,000 visits to Children’s. More information is available at