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South Milwaukee — Healthstat Inc., a workplace health promotion and wellness provider, has been chosen to manage and operate an onsite health clinic and wellness program for employees of the South Milwaukee School District.

The goal of Healthstat’s health and wellness program is to improve school district employees’ health in an effort to reduce costs associated with their health benefits plan. The program will be available to full- and part-time employees, their spouses and children over the age of 2 and retirees under the age of 65 covered by the school district’s health benefits plan. Currently, there are approximately 750 individuals eligible to participate.

A core part of the program is an onsite health clinic, which provides plan participants convenient, affordable access to disease management, health risk counseling, and acute and urgent care, officials said in a press release.

Cost-saving approach

One of Healthstat’s primary functions is to identify chronic health issues and prescribe treatment to reduce the risk of serious illness. The result is fewer and less costly insurance claims, which lowers the employer’s cost of providing health insurance to its employees.

For example, the Waukesha Employee Health and Wellness Center, which opened in October 2014 as a shared clinic for employees of the city of Waukesha, Waukesha School District and Waukesha County, realized combined cost savings of $2,670,184 in its first year of operation. That more than quintupled the anticipated $423,560 cost savings officials there were expecting.

“Healthstat comes highly recommended by other Milwaukee area school districts that have experienced significant reductions in their health benefit plan costs," said Jennifer Sielaff, director of personnel, administrative and legal services for the South Milwaukee School District. "We look forward to realizing similar cost savings and at the same time providing our employees with a tremendous healthcare benefit.”

Healthstat anticipates that after 36 months, the South Milwaukee School District will save $2 in health care claims costs for every $1 it invests in the program. The savings come from the combination of reducing the rising cost of health care services and improving productivity.

At work

Not only does having a health center located at work save time, patient wait times average five minutes so employees get back to work faster, thus minimizing downtime and improving productivity, according to the press release. For school teachers in particular, this is especially critical because it allows them to get in and out without having to get another teacher to watch their classroom.

Healthstat officials say they can build on their success.

“Healthstat is delighted to have an opportunity to implement our cost savings and productivity model in yet another successful Milwaukee school system," said CEO Crockett Dale. "The success we’ve already had with other area school districts and municipalities is proof that our unique model for employer health and wellness programs works.”

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