Navigation Links
Akron researchers devise Rx for ailing wellness programs
Date:12/5/2012

Corporations sink millions into employee wellness programs that don't work.

They don't work because:

  • They are not personalized what motivates one employee to exercise may not motivate another colleague.
  • Managers lack real-time data to improve program effectiveness.
  • The programs often strive for optimal goals, when good-enough results would yield broader benefits.

A computer engineering professor at The University of Akron has devised a novel design for future wellness programs. The National Science Foundation praised the proposal and awarded $1.3 million to test and validate the Personal Wellness Management System.

"There is a critical national need for cost-effective programs that encourage exercise and healthy lifestyle behaviors," said the professor and principle investigator, Dr. Shivakumar Sastry. "The early results of our design show that it has the potential to fundamentally transform how wellness programs are designed and managed."

Sastry said companies and organizations that provide health insurance will be attracted to the Personal Wellness Management System because it will reduce costs. Employees will benefit from the holistic and customized approach.

"Many things must come together to make a person well: you need medical practitioners, nutritionists, exercise specialists, behavioral scientists," Sastry said. "At the same time, these systems need to be rigorous enough, because this is a healthcare business, with serious repercussions on cost for organizations. So if an organization can invest only $30,000 in a wellness program, the Personal Wellness Management system will show how to allocate those dollars precisely throughout a population for the very best outcome."

At its core, the Personal Wellness Management System is a professional who serves as the decision maker. He or she is armed with powerful software that allows rapid adjustments to each participant's "wellness prescription" based on real-time data. The data shows who is meeting prescribed goals in exercising, eating right and meeting medical needs. And significantly the software, aware of personal preferences, will recommend tailored incentives to keep each participant engaged and on track.

So sophisticated is the software that it will know over time who the influencers are within an organization that is, the people who have the ability to influence others' behavior. The software might recommend special incentives for the influencers to encourage them to rally others to walk the hallways with them at lunchtime.

(To achieve this, Sastry applies the goal-seeking paradigm, a theory better known to explain the spread of diseases and the economies of nations. Never has it been applied to human motivation in a wellness setting.)

For the Personal Wellness Management project, Sastry has assembled an impressive and multidisciplinary team of PhDs and graduate students from across the Akron campus in nursing, biometrics, health care, psychology, exercise science and computer information systems. The Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron is also a partner.

"Personalized Wellness Management is focused on helping each individual determine and incorporate the physical and behavioral habits that will improve and sustain good health," said Dr. Frank Douglas, CEO of the Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron and a co-principal investigator on the grant. "It is the essence of healthy living."


'/>"/>

Contact: Laura Massie
massie1@uakron.edu
330-972-6476
University of Akron
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Studying marrow, URMC researchers accelerate blood stem cells
2. UNM Cancer Center researchers study new target for breast cancer
3. Barrow researchers successfully destroy brain tumor cells
4. Western University researchers make breakthrough in arthritis research
5. Researchers report first success of targeted therapy in most common non-small cell lung cancer
6. USC, Oxford researchers find high fructose corn syrup-global prevalence of diabetes link
7. Researchers study cry acoustics to determine risk for autism
8. Researchers explore social media as preventative method for infectious diseases
9. New mechanism for cancer progression discovered by UNC and Harvard researchers
10. Researchers identify physiological evidence of chemo brain
11. Researchers find chemical switches for neurodegenerative diseases
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... , ... June 27, 2016 , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded ... Eyeglasses . , Millions of individuals in the United States and Canada wear ... a way to both correct vision and make a fashion statement. Even celebrities use ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel Film Studios Released ProSlice Levels, a Media ... give their videos a whole new perspective by using the title layers in ... Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over 30 Different presets to choose from. ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Birmingham, Lake Orion, Clarkston, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... ... ... their direction with respect to fertility once they have been diagnosed with endometriosis. ... for tolerable intercourse but they also require a comprehensive approach that can help ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice infestation, as ... of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, and to ... one in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , As lice ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar Marathe earned his Bachelors in ... School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal Medicine at Scripps Green Hospital ... at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had the opportunity to train in ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016   Bay Area Lyme Foundation ... Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness , Harvard ... MIT Hacking Medicine, University of California, Berkeley, and ... the five finalists of Lyme Innovation , ... than 100 scientists, clinicians, researchers, entrepreneurs, and investors ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016 Research and ... "Structural Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" report ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural Health Monitoring, ... Structural electronics involves electronic and/or electrical components ... replacing dumb structures such as vehicle bodies or ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Dehaier Medical Systems Ltd. (NASDAQ: DHRM ) ... medical devices and wearable sleep respiratory products in ... with Hongyuan Supply Chain Management Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred ... to develop Dehaier,s new Internet medical technology business. ... Hongyuan Supply Chain,s sales platform to reach Dehaier,s dealers ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: