SOURCE: Virgin HealthMiles

Virgin HealthMiles

January 27, 2010 14:25 ET

Virgin HealthMiles Achieves Significant Expansion of Company's Innovative Health and Productivity Program in 2009

Virgin HealthMiles Announces 30% Increase in New Clients, Including Maidenform Brands, Inc., Papa John's International, Inc. and Timberland, and 163% Increase in New Eligible Members

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - January 27, 2010) - Virgin HealthMiles, a leading provider of employee health and productivity programs that reward individuals for getting healthy, today announced significant annual growth in 2009, with a 30 percent year-over-year increase in new clients and a 163 percent year-over-year growth in the number of eligible program members. Additionally, Virgin HealthMiles announced two new partnerships with major U.S. health insurers. Terms were not disclosed.

New Virgin HealthMiles clients include Maidenform Brands, Inc. (NYSE: MFB), Papa John's International, Inc. (NASDAQ: PZZA), and Timberland (NYSE: TBL). These organizations are among many large employers across the United States that adopted Virgin HealthMiles' unique Pay-for-Prevention™ model in 2009.

"2009 was a milestone year for Virgin HealthMiles, as larger organizations implemented our Pay-for-Prevention approach to employee health and productivity," said Chris Boyce, CEO of Virgin HealthMiles. "As healthcare costs continue to soar, many large employers have turned to employee health programs designed to prevent illness instead of solely treating it. While good employee health is imperative to companies, much of its success rests upon high employee participation in wellness programs and the ability to measure program results. Virgin HealthMiles' combined expertise in generating above average engagement levels, making wellness fun, and providing employers with measurable results have fueled our growth. We're delighted to welcome our new clients to the Virgin HealthMiles family and are excited to work together in improving employee health."

Virgin HealthMiles Pay-for-Prevention Approach Keeps Employee Engagement and Physical Activity Levels High

Pioneered by Virgin HealthMiles, the Pay-for-Prevention model creates a culture of prevention that rewards healthy behaviors and aligns an organization's interests with those of its employees to drive down lifestyle-related healthcare and productivity costs. Employers benefit from validated activity and health data, which ensures rewards are earned for actual performance, and real-time reporting, which details measurable improvements in the health of their workforce and the impact of their overall wellness strategy. By implementing this approach, engagement levels among Virgin HealthMiles clients average 40 percent, well above the industry average. Such significant engagement has led to high member satisfaction and physical activity levels. 96 percent of Virgin HealthMiles' members are satisfied with the program, while 92 percent would recommend it to a friend or colleague. Further, Virgin HealthMiles members have collectively taken more than 200 billion steps -- approximately 4,000 times around the globe -- since the program's inception in 2006.

"We are choosing to focus on health reform, instead of waiting for healthcare reform," said Andy Pfeifer, director of total rewards, Timberland. "Timberland is investing in the long-term health of our employees by launching a fun, activity-based wellness initiative this year. By tying rewards to physical activity, Virgin HealthMiles gives us the platform to do that because the program is easy to use and very motivational."

Timberland is a global leader in the design, engineering and marketing of premium-quality footwear, apparel and accessories for consumers who value the outdoors. The company recently launched their Virgin HealthMiles program and secured a 17 percent enrollment just on the first day. "Virgin HealthMiles is a natural partner partly because the two companies' cultures are so aligned in terms of corporate responsibility and innovation," said John Pazzani, chief culture officer. "In the long run, we may save some on our healthcare expense, but really -- more importantly -- we may also prevent an illness, avoid a heart attack, prolong a life or improve the quality of an employee's life today."

Also in 2009, Virgin HealthMiles took Pay-for-Prevention to the national stage with their first annual National Employee Wellness Month (, to promote chronic disease prevention as an important success factor in the U.S. national health care debate. The company partnered with the national non-profit health coalition Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance in the month-long initiative that drew more than 60 companies across the U.S. and 17,000 employees participating to raise national awareness of the benefits of workplace wellness.

Such enthusiastic participation underscores the ease of use and motivational strengths of the Virgin HealthMiles program that are helping employees improve health as a community.

"Virgin HealthMiles brings a fresh and upbeat approach to wellness. In just six months, our program has generated enthusiasm, and motivated our team members to achieve wellness goals that are very reachable. They now want to stay active," said Brenda Miles, senior benefits manager for Kentucky-based Papa John's International, Inc. "In our corporate wellness challenge, 44 percent of our Virgin HealthMiles participants took part in the challenge, and they collectively walked 19 million steps in three weeks. Virgin HealthMiles has helped our management team keep wellness at the forefront of our company with minimal administration required on our part."

About Virgin HealthMiles

Virgin HealthMiles provides employee health programs that pay people to get active. The company's Pay-for-Prevention™ approach, based on physical activity and healthy lifestyle change, attracts an average of 40 percent of employees who participate, which helps organizations reduce medical costs and improve employee productivity and satisfaction. The program is offered by employers, government entities, and insurers. Over 120 industry leaders representing more than 500,000 employees across the U.S., including American Diabetes Association, Commonwealth of Kentucky, Hospital Corporation of America-Shared Services, Shands Jacksonville Medical Center, and SunGard, have selected Virgin HealthMiles' award-winning program for their employees. The company is a member of Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group. For more information, visit

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