According to the Centers for Disease Control, chronic health conditions are responsible for 86% of all healthcare spending. This striking statistic is the motivation for an increase in wellness programs across the country. In an article for the Wall Street Journal, writer Barbara Sadick highlights how wellness programs work and how they seek to reduce costs by improving health.

How wellness programs work

Wellness programs “typically include counseling to get patients to understand how behavior affects health, along with techniques such as meditation and goal-setting to help individuals make needed changes and stay on course,” reports Sadick.

Programs are administered by wellness coaches, who work with clients to implement changes in their lifestyle that lead to healthier behaviors. At Vera Whole Health, on-site clinics employ full-time health coaches trained in behavior change techniques that empower patients to take ownership of their own health. Because of their potential for driving health outcomes, wellness programs are growing in popularity. But not all wellness programs are created equal. Let's take a look at what advantages Vera's health coaches offer.

Vera’s health coaches go further

Vera’s health coaches are fully integrated into our clinical model, whereas many wellness programs typically act as bolt-on services within larger benefits packages. By placing health coaching at the core of Vera’s healthcare approach, patients get the benefit of full-time coaches that work with their provider on common goals. Here’s how Vera’s health coaches go above and beyond normal wellness programs.

Empathetic Listening — Each coach is trained to employ empathetic listening practices that foster meaningful relationships between coaches and patients. With that trust in place, patients feel empowered to share their goals and barriers to better health.

Dedicated Care Teams  Health coaches are an integral part of every patient’s dedicated care team, which consists of a provider, health coach, and medical staff. Care teams work collaboratively to develop personalized care plans and to help patients achieve their goals for better health. To facilitate this collaboration, all of Vera's staff are trained in empathetic listening and the transtheoretical model of change.

Transtheoretical Model of Change  Health coaches at Vera are trained to use the transtheoretical model of change to identify which stage of change a patient is in. By meeting patients where they are, health coaches can develop specific goals to motivate patients to change.

Want to read more about Vera’s approach to behavior change? Check out our Q&A with Vera CEO Ryan Schmid here.

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