By Julian Pecquet - 06/23/11 02:44 PM EDT
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on Thursday made available $10 million for employers to improve their workers' health, part of the Prevention and Public Health Fund created by the healthcare reform law.
The initiative, according to HHS, aims to improve workplaces so that they support healthy lifestyles and reduce risk factors for chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes. Applications for the Comprehensive Health Programs to Address Physical Activity, Nutrition and Tobacco Use in the Workplace"are being accepted until Aug. 8, 2011
"Spiraling healthcare costs and declines in worker productivity due to poor health are eroding the bottom line of American businesses," HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in a statement. "This new initiative will help companies of all sizes implement strategies to improve employee health and contain health costs driven largely by chronic diseases."