CHN brings healthy initiative to Bartow
by Matt Shinall
Sep 07, 2010 | 2824 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff members of Community-Y Health Network pose by their sign on North Tennessee Street, left, Diana Baughman, NP, manager clinic operations, Susan McCullough, administrative assistant, Missy Alberts, administrative assistant, Kim Elliott, administrative assistant, Patrick Nelson, Healthy Bartow Initiative, Dayna Schultze, administrative director, John Giles, chief executive officer and Jackie Warren, RD, LD, director of operations. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
Staff members of Community-Y Health Network pose by their sign on North Tennessee Street, left, Diana Baughman, NP, manager clinic operations, Susan McCullough, administrative assistant, Missy Alberts, administrative assistant, Kim Elliott, administrative assistant, Patrick Nelson, Healthy Bartow Initiative, Dayna Schultze, administrative director, John Giles, chief executive officer and Jackie Warren, RD, LD, director of operations. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
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As a war against skyrocketing healthcare costs wages on in Washington, a local company works to fight the cause at its source.

Founded in Kennesaw, Communit-Y Health Network, a health and wellness management firm, has garnered corporate accounts across Bartow County inspiring the relocation of their headquarters to Cartersville.

Now at home at 1 N. Tennessee St., in the old Coca-Cola building, CHN has partnered with the governmental agencies of Bartow County and the city of Cartersville as well as private corporations to practice preventative health maintenance in the effort to cut health care costs.

"We had Bartow County and we had the city of Cartersville and that is the perfect nucleus to launch a Healthy Bartow initiative," said John Giles, CHN CEO. "We want to see the parks full of people. We want to see the gyms full of people. ... That's our vision. We want to see people being active and engaged in their health because that's the only thing that's going to save our healthcare system. It's the only way we can manage the cost of healthcare, is to help people remain healthy."

Working with employers, CHN uses a one-on-one coaching philosophy to help individuals meet their healthcare goals. Focusing on one of several factors, employees may choose to target weight loss, smoking cessation, stress management, blood pressure, cholesterol or other health risks that are prioritized during an initial screening consultation.

"What separates us from other so called wellness providers is our face-to-face on the job site model. Everything we do takes place at the work site," said Jackie Warren, RD, LD, CHN director of operations. "So we try to do the screening on site and meet with them weekly once we start the coaching there at their job site. So that makes it easier for them to participate and that's really the secret to what we do. That face-to-face helps hold people accountable."

Utilizing a private, confidential source for wellness management, allows for third party health access improving accountability and honesty with coaches, Warren said. Holding at least a four-year degree in health and nutrition, wellness coaches enable customers to achieve their goals by imparting knowledge, health education and the proper tools for development.

"Once we get a customer, they don't leave us because the longer we're there the better the results are, the better the culture gets. And the one thing we know is that if the employees don't have the tools to continue their better health efforts it unfortunately will go right back to where it was, they regain their weight," Giles said.

"The fact is, as long as we're there we're going to bring value to the organization. And we will continue to add valuable products and services to our offering as time goes along."

According to rankings from the United Health Foundation, Georgia is 43rd in health standings with Bartow County ranking 61st in the state for health factors out of Georgia's 159 counties. Hoping to help improve those numbers, CHN is launching an initiative entitled Healthy Bartow to work with employers, nonprofit organizations, hospitals and other healthcare providers to strengthen personal health awareness and provide their services to a larger number of citizens through local contracts and grants.

"We're going to launch an initiative that will take several years to mature but we're going to go out to businesses and ask them to invest in the health of their employees. We're going to try to go out and get grants to provide our services to people who are not employed, cannot afford our services and don't have a way to get them any other way. We're going to probably offer our services through some nonprofits, free of charge. We're going to develop resources to provide our services to anybody that wants our services in Bartow County. That's the essence of the Healthy Bartow initiative," Giles said.

CHN has an aggressive growth plan to expand throughout the nation. Taking their mission to improve health into other communities, Giles shared his vision and future plans of the company.

"We're in the process of expanding nationally, we're going to be opening several offices between now and the end of the year. And we're going to continue to expand and in five years we expect to be in every large metropolitan area in the country. What we're doing is very unique. There is no other company in the country that uses the face-to-face, one-on-one, at the work site coaching model that we use," Giles said.

For employers, CHN cuts health care costs drastically, said Giles, by reducing long-term medical expenses and cutting risk factors in employees. Employers interested in opportunities with CHN should call 770-334-2480 or visit www.chn-corp.com.