What Can Medical Wellness Centers Do To help In The Pandemic?

No matter where you are in the country today, your Hospital has been effected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Some worse than others, but all have felt the effects. What can the Medical Fitness Center do to support their hospital? Healthplex Associates (HPA) has a variety of answers, here are some of the most impactful:

 

 

 

·     Community Education – Who better to educate the community on the benefits of regular exercise as it relates to Covid-19, than their Medical Fitness Center? People who exercise regularly and then test positive for Covid-19 are less likely to experience more severe outcomes. Creating community-based marketing and programming should be an imperative for all Medical Fitness Centers. Fight Fear with Fitness!

 

·     Vaccination Communication – Several HPA Centers have been used as “pop-up” vaccination locations. With most hospital ER’s and clinics overwhelmed, the Medical Fitness Center can be a suitable and convenient location to offer vaccines to the community.

 

·     Team Support – “Do what it takes!” has been the mantra of my local hospital. Like many hospital systems throughout the country, a severe nursing shortage has resulted in an “all hands on deck” mentality. Volunteer time and support your hospital team in their time of need. Answer phones, transport patients, simply put, be there for whatever is needed.

 

·     Fiscal Responsibility – The past 18 months has resulted in a roller coaster of restrictions, closings, mandates, and state of emergencies. A responsible Medical Fitness Center must control costs accordingly and aggressively.

 

·     Stress the Continuum of Care – The importance of a robust EMR referral program for your Centers clinical integration program is higher now due to the Covid-19 pandemic. All patients being discharged should be made aware of the wellness resources available to them. Medical Fitness Center staff have a responsibility to maintain an ongoing line of communication with hospital physicians and clinicians about the process of referring patients to the Center.

 

Be a strong service line and partner for your hospital. Be proactive. Do what it takes!

Author:

Ryan Barr

HPA Assistant Vice President- Operational Support


Healthplex Associates (HPA) consults with hospitals, health systems, foundations, and universities across the United States to create and manage clinically integrated fitness facilities. Healthplex Associates has developed unique programs to ensure the smooth transition from the clinical setting to the wellness center for people who need long term lifestyle management support for optimal health. HPA has achieved national leadership through innovation and our dedication to patients and clients.  

Our combined staff has now served over 400 clients ranging from large hospitals to smaller, community based rural hospitals.  We work exclusively with organizations ranging from healthcare systems, universities and foundations who are committed to a vision of improving the health and wellness of the community in which they serve.   

Healthplex Associates has developed a unique, hands-on style to assisting and advising clients with an approach that stresses partnerships. We provide an array of services in the Medical Wellness Industry.  These services include feasibility studies, audits of existing medical fitness centers and management. Fundamentally, we believe that true community health must include fitness/wellness services and because of our deep healthcare background (all of our principals have health care management or clinical backgrounds), our Healthplex team fully understands the client’s mission and the complexity of today’s healthcare environment. 

The management team of Healthplex Associates is made up of some of the nation’s most experienced experts in the field of medically based fitness. Few management firms can boast of the experience in health care, clinical services, and operations of medically based fitness centers that HPA possesses.  

  

 

3 Ways Healthplex is Redefining “Health” In Our Communities

Many years ago (more than I am willing to admit to), I had an instructor in graduate school who spoke about how our whole health system is focused on its reaction to injury and disease. He talked about a patient he was seeing (he had been the Director of Social Services at a major hospital) who had diabetes and was a particularly difficult case. It turned out that he did a home visit and found that the family did not speak English and didn’t understand the need for a change in diet for the patient to control his disease. Once they cleared that hurdle, the patient’s control of his diabetes improved markedly.

The point the professor was making was that health services need to go beyond a narrow view of treatment in order to actually create “health”. It strikes me that we are constantly re-learning this lesson, even today. When we started Healthplex Associates over 25 years ago, we thought we were breaking the mold by adding exercise to the treatment of people with cardiac disease or as a supplement to physical therapy. Compared to how most health systems were seeing their role in creating “health”, we were doing something new.

In the last few years, however, we have seen a change to the role that our wellness centers can play in creating “health”. We are now seeing a more expansive view that focuses on the “whole person”. For example, our Henry Mayo Fitness and Health Center in California has developed a program to work with teens who may be suffering from depression and a low self-concept. These kids become a risk of suicide, but by working with them we have been able to address their issues and help them through some tough times.

Similarly, our Healthplex in the Bronx has started to work with the City’s “B.R.A.G (Bronx Rises Against Gun Violence)” program to reach out to kids who might otherwise be involved with gun violence. The program teaches them boxing skills which directs their energy to a more controlled outlet and, again, raises their self-esteem. Saint Barnabus’ pediatrics department is also identifying indigent kids who need counseling in lifestyle habits that may be putting them at risk and referring them to the Healthplex for support.

In Indianapolis, the Healthplex recently started a program for children with Autism. According to one of the therapists at the Applied Behavior Center for Autism, “We are able to expand pre-existing skills to more people and cultivate new and emerging skills. It is so important for children to be able to do things in an environment in which they feel safe and can have fun. The Healthplex and their employees are able to provide both.”

These are just a few of the ways that our centers are reaching out and redefining their roles, ways that we are proud to say that we are redefining providing “health” to our communities.

 

Author:

Stephen A. Robbins

PRESIDENT EMERITUS, HPA


Healthplex Associates (HPA) consults with hospitals, health systems, foundations, and universities across the United States to create and manage clinically integrated fitness facilities. Healthplex Associates has developed unique programs to ensure the smooth transition from the clinical setting to the wellness center for people who need long term lifestyle management support for optimal health. HPA has achieved national leadership through innovation and our dedication to patients and clients.  

Our combined staff has now served over 400 clients ranging from large hospitals to smaller, community based rural hospitals.  We work exclusively with organizations ranging from healthcare systems, universities and foundations who are committed to a vision of improving the health and wellness of the community in which they serve.   

Healthplex Associates has developed a unique, hands-on style to assisting and advising clients with an approach that stresses partnerships. We provide an array of services in the Medical Wellness Industry.  These services include feasibility studies, audits of existing medical fitness centers and management. Fundamentally, we believe that true community health must include fitness/wellness services and because of our deep healthcare background (all of our principals have health care management or clinical backgrounds), our Healthplex team fully understands the client’s mission and the complexity of today’s healthcare environment. 

The management team of Healthplex Associates is made up of some of the nation’s most experienced experts in the field of medically based fitness. Few management firms can boast of the experience in health care, clinical services, and operations of medically based fitness centers that HPA possesses.  

  

 

Group Exercise Benefits

The people who surround us can influence our attitudes and emotional responses to exercise. Our friends and family can affect how we feel about exercising. Those influences can determine whether we do it or not. By networking with others who exercise regularly, we start to perceive exercise as more positive, common, desirable, and doable. That’s why Group Exercise is so important in our facilities. Group classes are a fun way to meet new people, have an instructor to assure proper form and to maintain our motivation each session.

Group Ex instructor – Jenny Huelsbeck at Healthplex’s Wellness Center of URMC does all of that. From encouraging her members to dress up for holidays, to having class contests, Jenny keeps her members excited and engaged. Jenny teaches both Zumba Strong (a high intensity class coordinating movement to music and focusing on functional strengthening), and Aqua Moves, (a dance inspired class that gets everyone moving and grooving in the water).

The benefits of exercise are many: heart health, weight management, better sleep, improved mood, more energy and many more. The biggest benefit? Reducing the risk of chronic illnesses. Through exercise, we can stay healthy longer, age well, and feel great.


Healthplex Associates (HPA) consults with hospitals, health systems, foundations, and universities across the United States to create and manage clinically integrated fitness facilities. Healthplex Associates has developed unique programs to ensure the smooth transition from the clinical setting to the wellness center for people who need long term lifestyle management support for optimal health. HPA has achieved national leadership through innovation and our dedication to patients and clients.  

Our combined staff has now served over 400 clients ranging from large hospitals to smaller, community based rural hospitals.  We work exclusively with organizations ranging from healthcare systems, universities and foundations who are committed to a vision of improving the health and wellness of the community in which they serve.   

Healthplex Associates has developed a unique, hands-on style to assisting and advising clients with an approach that stresses partnerships. We provide an array of services in the Medical Wellness Industry.  These services include feasibility studies, audits of existing medical fitness centers and management. Fundamentally, we believe that true community health must include fitness/wellness services and because of our deep healthcare background (all of our principals have health care management or clinical backgrounds), our Healthplex team fully understands the client’s mission and the complexity of today’s healthcare environment. 

The management team of Healthplex Associates is made up of some of the nation’s most experienced experts in the field of medically based fitness. Few management firms can boast of the experience in health care, clinical services, and operations of medically based fitness centers that HPA possesses.  

  

 

Healthplex Member Spotlight- Eric McElvenny

Healthplex’s Center for Fitness and Health member Eric McElvenny recently qualified for the United States Paralympic Triathlon Team and will compete in Tokyo this August. “What makes the Paralympics special is that each and every athlete has a disability and almost every one of us has overcome something,” McElvenny said. A 2006 graduate of the Naval Academy, Eric McElvenny became a Marine after graduating. It was on his final tour in Afghanistan that his life changed forever when he stepped on an Improvised Explosive Device. He suffered the amputation of his right leg below the knee. A standout athlete in high school and college, Eric started doing ironman triathlons and long-distance races. His journey has led him to qualifying for the Paralympic Games. He swims five times a week at the Center for Fitness and Health, amassing between 4,000 to 5,000 yards. He averages 30 to 35 miles running a week. Recently, he stopped at the nearby high school track and completed a seven-mile workout that consisted of 200-meter intervals and short jogs. He also averages 100-150 miles a week on his bike.


Healthplex Associates (HPA) consults with hospitals, health systems, foundations, and universities across the United States to create and manage clinically integrated fitness facilities. Healthplex Associates has developed unique programs to ensure the smooth transition from the clinical setting to the wellness center for people who need long term lifestyle management support for optimal health. HPA has achieved national leadership through innovation and our dedication to patients and clients.  

Our combined staff has now served over 400 clients ranging from large hospitals to smaller, community based rural hospitals.  We work exclusively with organizations ranging from healthcare systems, universities and foundations who are committed to a vision of improving the health and wellness of the community in which they serve.   

Healthplex Associates has developed a unique, hands-on style to assisting and advising clients with an approach that stresses partnerships. We provide an array of services in the Medical Wellness Industry.  These services include feasibility studies, audits of existing medical fitness centers and management. Fundamentally, we believe that true community health must include fitness/wellness services and because of our deep healthcare background (all of our principals have health care management or clinical backgrounds), our Healthplex team fully understands the client’s mission and the complexity of today’s healthcare environment. 

The management team of Healthplex Associates is made up of some of the nation’s most experienced experts in the field of medically based fitness. Few management firms can boast of the experience in health care, clinical services, and operations of medically based fitness centers that HPA possesses.  

  

 

Improving Lives Through Pool Therapy

The Indianapolis Healthplex is teaming up with The Applied Behavior Center for Autism to improve lives through activity, learning new skills and making new friends in the pool. The children are seeing great benefits from the swimming partnership with the Healthplex. Sarah Berline, Behavorial Analyst at the Applied Behavior Center for Autism, shared, “We are able to expand pre-existing skills to more people and cultivate new and emerging skills. It is so important for children to be able to do things in an environment in which they feel safe and can have fun. The Healthplex and their employees are able to provide both.”

Sally Brindle, Director of Aquatics, at the Indianapolis Healthplex was inspired to get her Masters in Rec Therapy at the age of 55 so that she can help those with Autism. Sally became passionate about this after working with a non-verbal young man in the pool. “He started barely putting his toe in and when we were done 5 years later, he was swimming 25 yards both on his front and back. He also became a little more social and verbal due to the water. This partnership has been my dream since then, and my heart explodes when I work with these children.” says Sally.

Long Term Covid Fatigue Reduced with Exercise Programming

Encouraging news in medical fitness.  A recent study shows that exercise therapy can improve exercise capacity, levels of fatigue, and overall wellbeing in people with lasting symptoms of COVID-19.

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Healthplex Associates (HPA) consults with hospitals, health systems, foundations, and universities across the United States to create and manage clinically integrated fitness facilities. Healthplex Associates has developed unique programs to ensure the smooth transition from the clinical setting to the wellness center for people who need long term lifestyle management support for optimal health. HPA has achieved national leadership through innovation and our dedication to patients and clients.  

Our combined staff has now served over 400 clients ranging from large hospitals to smaller, community based rural hospitals.  We work exclusively with organizations ranging from healthcare systems, universities and foundations who are committed to a vision of improving the health and wellness of the community in which they serve.   

Healthplex Associates has developed a unique, hands-on style to assisting and advising clients with an approach that stresses partnerships. We provide an array of services in the Medical Wellness Industry.  These services include feasibility studies, audits of existing medical fitness centers and management. Fundamentally, we believe that true community health must include fitness/wellness services and because of our deep healthcare background (all of our principals have health care management or clinical backgrounds), our Healthplex team fully understands the client’s mission and the complexity of today’s healthcare environment. 

The management team of Healthplex Associates is made up of some of the nation’s most experienced experts in the field of medically based fitness. Few management firms can boast of the experience in health care, clinical services, and operations of medically based fitness centers that HPA possesses.