Health Fairs

A wellness fair is an opportune way to familiarize employees with health issues and related wellness programs.  During a wellness fair employees could  be able to –

• obtain resource materials;
• participate in offered health screenings (vision, hearing, blood, cholesterol, cancer, dental, etc.);
• observe demonstrations on the use of fitness equipment;
• attend mini-seminars on various health topics;
• get free promotional items from local businesses;
• sample healthful foods; and
• obtain information about their health benefit plan.

Some employers feature a “health and benefit fair” which includes providers representing the various employee benefit plans (long-term disability, retirement, etc.) available to employees through their employer.

Considerations when coordinating a health fair –

• Setting up a successful health fair takes robust time. Time issues should be taken into account in planning and organizing such an event. the most time consuming part is generally contacting potential participants, making arrangements for their participation, confirming their participation, and establishing up the day of the event.

• Sufficient space, tables and chairs must available to allow for the number of vendors invited. Some vendors might have portable displays or materials that’ll require additional space, access to electrical outlets, or other logistical considerations that should be discussed before the health fair.

• Vendors will be hoping to make contact with as many persons as possible during the event. Securing their commitment to future health fairs requires that every effort be made to promote participation by publicizing the event, selecting  the proper venue, and offering incentives.

• When possible, locate the wellness fair in an area with heavy foot traffic.

• Ask providers to supply free materials at their table and to make a donation to a prize drawing. Follow all corporation policies when soliciting donations.

• as an idea to increase employee participation and to keep interest high, each attendee could be given a “passport”, similar to a bingo card, to be signed by each provider. the signed passport becomes the ticket for the prize drawings. Such drawings should take place every 15 or 30 minutes.

• Consider teaming up with neighboring companys to stage a health fair. A team effort will spread out the work and maximize participation.

Ideas for a Benefits Fair –

Invite representatives from each of your worker benefits provider groups. Ask each provider to be prepared to answer worker questions regarding their program. Representatives could include –

• Retirement plan representative.

• Long-term disability plan representative.

• Medical plan representative.

• Healthful Benefits representative.

• Contract cell phone representative (if applicable).

• Local savings and loan or credit union representative.

• Workers’ compensation representative.

Limited Space for a Wellness Fair –  If space is limited conduct the fair at lunchtime time. Place stations in company hallways or in individual small conference or office rooms scattered throughout the building.

Give a map with all the stations listed. Hold a free drawing awarding a prize for anybody who goes to 75% of the stations. Use a punch card or similar method to verify.

Resources for health and benefit fairs coordination –

Assume a wide definition of “health” and reflect that by including a selection of providers and services involved with physical, mental, financial and social health.

For example, health agencies, safety corporations, benefits providers, local healthcare facilities, recreational facilities, parks, financial planners, childcare referrals, EAP, fitness clubs, health food stores, library, alternative and complementary medicine providers, etc.

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