The university’s program, called UK Healthtrac
Rewards, is available to UK employees and retirees
who are enrolled in a university health plan. Participants
who visit their personal health page on the Internet
once a month and complete the Healthtrac questionnaire
when it is available, can earn $10 each month, up
to $120 a year, with quarterly checks sent directly
to their homes.
This program is part of the UK Health Literacy Project,
an overall effort to limit the cost increases in health
insurance and improve the health of employees.
“As our faculty, staff and retirees become
healthier through disease prevention, medical costs
are lowered, helping us hold down the spiraling costs
of health benefits,” said UK
President Lee T. Todd Jr. “Since the UK
Health Literacy Project was launched last year, the
university has experienced less than a 10 percent
increase in health care coverage costs compared to
a national average of 15 percent.”
The University of Kentucky is the first university
to use Healthtrac which provides various health improvement
programs to organizations around the world. “Our
sophisticated online programs evolved from over 20
years experience as the leader in paper-based health
risk assessment and intervention programs,”
said Edward W. Sharpless, president and CEO, Healthtrac
Individuals who are enrolled in the health plans
offered through CHA-Health and Humana must register
online at those companies’ Web sites for their
personal health page. After registering, and arriving
at the page with a secure password the participants
create, they will be asked to fill out a health assessment
questionnaire. Based on how it is answered, participants
will receive information about their health status.
If they need to make improvements, the Healthtrac
program will recommend ways to do so and resources
on UK’s campus that can help. Other information
from the health insurance carrier also is available
on that personal health page.
Individuals can indicate in the Healthtrac questionnaire
if they do or do not want follow-up information. If
they want it, personal health counselors will be in
touch with them. If they do not want the information,
no contact will be made.
“All information is kept strictly confidential,”
said David Hoke, director of the UK Health Literacy
Project. “All information privacy laws are followed.”
The new program is funded through UK’s health
benefit plan, Hoke said. “The self-funded medical
plan is owned by all of us at UK, and by investing
in the Healthtrac program, we can all work together
to control our costs.”
Organizations that have used this Healthtrac program
have reported as much as a four to one return on the
financial investment. T. Lynn Williamson, director
of UK Human Resources said he would be pleased with
a one to one return in the first year, with savings
increasing each year after that.
“The Healthtrac program is a clear demonstration
of how the university is on the cutting edge among
organizations trying to control health care costs.
When you take into consideration all the components
of our UK Health Literacy Project, we know of no other
academic institution that is working to control costs
like UK,” Williamson said.
The Health Literacy Project includes not only the
new Healthtrac Rewards program, but also BeH.I.P.,
a healthy lifestyle improvement program, and Pharmacy
REACH, a health and medication counseling program.
Allison Miller, director of communications for the
College and University
Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR),
said UK has joined only a few other universities in
the country with programs similar to UK Healthtrac
Rewards. “They are on the forefront of a new
trend in higher education benefits,” she said.
For more information on UK Healthtrac Rewards call
the UK Health Literacy Project at 257-6215 or visit