A risk-rated approach to a worksite health promotion needs assessment

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
James M. Eddy, Department Head and Professor (Creator)
Eugene C. Fitzhugh (Contributor)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: There is a growing concern within worksite health promotion related to low participation rates in health promotion programs targeted for at-risk employees.1-4 This concern is warranted because the success of these worksite programs, to a large degree, depends on the level of risk reduction and behavior change among at-risk employees.1 Perhaps one of the main reasons for low participation rates among at-risk groups can be found within the actual program planning phase. The designs of the many traditional worksite health promotion needs assessment surveys fail to adequately assess the needs and interests of at-risk employees. Needs assessment is recognized as the essential first step for cost-effective health promotion planning5 and often is conducted in the form of a survey administered to the target population or a representative sample. Herein lies the design flaw. The traditional needs assessment survey is designed only to provide summary needs and interest information for the total sample and not to provide a method by which the program planner can identify at-risk employees. Thus, the program planner has no accurate in-formation on the specific health-related needs and participation intentions of at-risk employees who are critical to long-term program success. Without this information the program planner may be developing health promotion programs that provide little incentive for the at-risk employee to participate. This deficiency can be ameliorated with minor modifications to the typical needs assessment survey. Such modifications that involve the addition of questions that allow employees to be classified according to risk levels and permit the expression of individual interest in participating within specific health promotion programs. This information gives the health promotion planner the ability to assess the prevalence of at-risk employees and, their specific problems and concerns, as well as the ability to predict the likelihood of their participation in desired health promotion programs. The purpose of this research paper is to illustrate a risk-rated needs assessment technique that can be used to improve participation in worksite health promotion programs by at-risk populations. A discussion of the design of a risk-rated survey and a case study will be presented in order to describe the advantages over a more traditional survey design.

Additional Information

Publication
Health Values, 17, 5, 57- 60
Language: English
Date: 1993
Keywords
Health promotion programs participation, At-risk employees, Risk-rated needs assessment