September 1, 2014

Stories

Oakland Grounds Crew Eliminates Obstacles to Health Assessment

Helping team members overcome computer and language barriers is key

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Management co-lead(s)

Monica Taylor, Monica.L.Taylor@kp.org

Union co-lead(s)

An Oakland Medical Center grounds worker who took the THA

When the Oakland Medical Center Landscape Maintenance UBT set out to achieve 100 percent completion of the Total Health Assessment and contribute the facility’s wellness target for PSP, it seemed like an easy thing to do.

“We thought we could do it in a week,” says Philip Osmond, senior gardener, union co-lead, SEIU UHW shop steward. “We were wrong.”

It actually took three weeks.

That’s because half of the members of the culturally diverse department either don’t speak English fluently or had no computer experience either on the job or at home.

“We spend most of our time outdoors and aren’t required to use a computer,” Osmond says.

So Osmond and management co-lead Monica Taylor, support services supervisor, spent lots of one-on-one time helping their colleagues through the time-consuming steps of getting a password from KP.org in order to access the THA.

“If the process was simplified or streamlined, more employees would to complete the THA,” Osmond says.

Still, team members immediately saw the benefits of the online questionnaire that covers nine key areas, including stress, physical activity and eating habits.

For example, maintenance workers are exposed to different weather conditions that can be harmful, such as too much sun, which increases the risk for skin cancer. The THA provides customized plans with steps that team members can take to protect their skin, including wearing clothing specifically designed for hot weather, working in the shade, not working outside during midday, when the sun is most harmful, and using sunscreen.

Since completing the THA, team members are more mindful of their health, says Taylor. “We’re more conscious of protecting ourselves on the job and improving our health. And it’s opened up conversations about how we can look out for each other as well.”

To take the Total Health Assessment, visit www.kp.org/hwf.

 

Team Overcomes Barriers to Taking Online Health Assessment

GOT QUESTIONS? GET ANSWERS
Use this contact information to find out more.
Management co-lead(s)

Monica Taylor, Monica.L.Taylor@kp.org

Union co-lead(s)

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Department: Landscape Maintenance, Oakland Medical Center

Value Compass: Best place to work

Problem: Team members not completing the Total Health Assessment (THA)

Metric: Total Health Assessment participation rate, PSP payout

SMART Goal: Increase the number of UBT members completing the THA from a baseline of 10 percent to 100 percent within one week.

Union co-lead: Philip Osmond, senior gardener, SEIU UHW shop steward

Management co-lead: Monica Taylor, support services supervisor

Small tests of change:

  • Shared SMART goal with team members at staff meetings and individually
  • Emphasized the health benefits of completing KP’s Total Health Assessment
  • Emphasized that completing the THA is a wellness goal of the KP’s Performance Sharing Program (PSP). (The Oakland Medical Center is expected to exceed the THA goal target of completion by 30 percent of employees.)

Result: 100 percent participation by all eight employees

Next step

Each team member will set healthy goals for him/herself based on results of the THA.

Biggest challenge

Overcoming members’ language and computer literacy barriers. “Quite a few members had needed help setting up an email address and logon so they could receive a password to take the assessment,” Osmond says. “I had done mine a while ago, so I helped each person individually.”

Advice to other teams

Take time to assist team members who are not computer savvy so they can complete the online survey.

Side benefits

Email and computer access for team members who had never had it. Access to KP.org, including the ability to check medical records, email their doctors, order prescriptions and view lab results.

To take the Total Health Assessment, visit www.kp.org/hwf.