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Businesses To Be Honored For Keeping Workers Well

MIAMI (CBSMiami.com) - South Florida companies that go the extra mile in helping to keep their employees well will be honored at an April forum hosted by CBS4's Shannon Hori. Nominations are underway for the 2011 South Florida Worksite Wellness Awards.

This is the third time the Consortium for a Healthy Miami Dade has held the awards recognizing the important strides local businesses have made in improving the health and well-being of their employees.

Click Here For Nomination Form (MS Word Document)

Studies have shown that programs in the workplace to help employees stay well help businesses have a healthier workforce with happier employees. Often, studies have shown, employees will make healthier choices when joining with co-workers than they might do on their own, or agree to take part because it's convenient at work.

Employers have found that in many cases, employees don't know where to get on their own the information workplace wellness programs provide. In many cases, the workplace wellness program provides services that an employee might otherwise have to pay for.

Companies have to devote time and money to create the programs, but often see concrete results in the form of less employee illness, fewer missed days, and even in a reduction in insurance claims.

To be nominated, a company must complete a form that allows them to explain, step by step, what they have done in the past 12 months to help keep their employees well, such as health risk assessments, nutrition, exercise programs, programs for quitting smoking, and programs to help reduce stress, among other efforts.

The nomination form asks for employee success stories, and wants to know how businesses plan to continue the program in the future.

There are three nomination categories for small, medium and large businesses. Judges will score each nomination, and the company in each category with the highest score will be honored at the April ceremony.

Past winners include Baptist Health Systems and Florida Power and Light, in the large business category. Henderson Mental Health Center was the 2010 Mid-size business recipient, while the 2009 winner in that category was Community Health of South Florida.

Small business can also have effective programs, as proven by the programs of the 2010 recipient, Camillus House, and the 2009 winner, Seitlin.

Deadline for nominations is 5 PM March 11th. The forum and awards ceremony is Friday, April 8th. $60 tickets are still available at www.southfloridaworksitewellnessawards.eventbrite.com.

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