Dollars & Sense

New wellness effort focuses on retail health advice

Updated: 2013-06-20T03:26:45Z

By DIANE STAFFORD

The Kansas City Star

Keeping people healthy is the best hope for controlling health care expenses, so two major Kansas City organizations are testing new ways to promote community wellness.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City said Wednesday that it is opening Live Blue storefront health education locations in the Zona Rosa shopping center and in Prairie Village.

Cerner Corp. said Tuesday that it is launching the Primary Health Network in Liberty in a pilot program with employees at the Hallmark Cards distribution center.

The intent of both efforts, although designed differently, is to provide venues where people can learn more about their health and healthy habits.

The first Live Blue location, opening Aug 1, will be in a 4,000-square-foot space in Zona Rosa in the Northland. It will offer one-on-one wellness advice, seminars, fitness classes and nutrition demonstrations and be a site where running and biking clubs and other wellness-related community events can be held.

The second Live Blue, at an as yet unspecified location in Prairie Village, is expected to open later this fall.

Because it is a health insurance provider, Blue Cross and Blue Shield also will use the retail sites as venues to help people choose health insurance or answer existing policy questions.

Cerner’s plan initially works with Hallmark employees and their families at the Liberty distribution center. The program, which begins this month, provides access to individual health assessments and helps people connect with doctors, meal plans and exercise plans that are appropriate for them.

Cerner said in a news release that it intends to expand the program this year through cooperation with other Kansas City area employers.

To reach Diane Stafford, call 816-234-4359 or send email to stafford@kcstar.com.

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