Mercy Takes Steps to Make Oklahoma Healthier

January 28, 2014

OKLAHOMA – Oklahoma ranks 43rd in the nation for overall healthiness, Mercy and other businesses across the state are taking steps to change that. The Oklahoma State Department of Health recently designated Mercy hospitals and clinics throughout Oklahoma as certified healthy businesses, recognizing efforts to encourage employees to eat better, move more and be tobacco free.

The state’s Shape Your Future campaign aligns with Mercy’s own wellness program, “Healthification,” which promotes well-balanced, healthy lifestyles through nutrition, physical activity, emotional and spiritual wellness and smoking cessation.

“We want to provide easier ways for our co-workers to achieve their best health,” said Di Smalley, FACHE, regional president of Mercy in Oklahoma. “We have more than 6,000 Mercy co-workers in Oklahoma and we want to lead our patients and communities by example. As old as the adage is, it’s true: ‘Actions speak louder than words.’ “

To move the dial, every Mercy facility throughout Oklahoma has either an on-staff wellness coordinator or designated wellness captain who is responsible for providing opportunities and implementing policies that make for healthier lifestyles. Mercy has also encouraged co-workers to track their physical activity online to earn quarterly bonuses, created walking/jogging trails around Mercy campuses and organized support groups for eating healthy and weight management.

For the state’s certified healthy business status, organizations apply for recognition and highlight activities offered to their co-workers in the following categories: screening and evaluation; health education and information; physical activity; tobacco use prevention; nutrition; management support; leadership; behavioral health and, emotional well-being.

Businesses are awarded certifications in three levels: excellence, merit and basic. To obtain excellence status, businesses must have in effect a 100 percent tobacco free workplace policy that applies to the entire property under their control, both indoors and outdoors.

Mercy facilities earning the excellence certification include:

Mercy Clinic – statewide

Mercy Health Love County

Mercy Hospital Ada

Mercy Hospital Ardmore

Mercy Hospital Healdton

Mercy Hospital Logan County

Mercy Hospital Oklahoma City

Mercy Hospital Watonga

Other Mercy hospitals recognized as certified healthy businesses:

Mercy Hospital Tishomingo

Mercy Hospital El Reno

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