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Personalized Biometrics Results Spur Healthy Change

What’s it like to get a biometric screening as part of this year’s Live Well Challenge? Josh Smith, Portico’s director of health products, shares his story.



Josh Smith
Director of Health Products, Portico Benefit Services
Minneapolis, Minnesota
December 2017

Before I came to Portico, I worked for a national health services company whose wellness program included biometric screenings — having a brief appointment to take height, weight, and blood pressure, and a blood draw to determine medical results like cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

The first time I participated, I was impressed with how easy it was. I went online to make an appointment at the lab. When I got there, I didn’t have to fill out any paperwork — I just had to show my driver’s license for identification. The nurse was friendly and efficient. I was in and out in 10 minutes.

But the best part was when I got my personalized results.

Even though all of my numbers were in the ‘normal’ range, I was surprised to see that a couple of measurements were higher than I expected. Finding out I was borderline pre-diabetic gave me the chance to adjust what I ate and make exercise a priority.

I especially appreciated the booklet that explained what my biometric results meant. Typically when I’ve had lab work done as part of my annual physical, I’ve received a quick printout of my numbers. But I’ve never received a comprehensive report like the personalized one mailed to me after this screening. It gave me the context of why each measurement was important, as well as ideas of how I could take action to improve those numbers. The changes I made helped me feel better in the short run — and definitely prevented trouble down the road.

Getting my biometric measurements gave me the knowledge and confidence to take better care of my body, and I believe as we together work for a healthier ELCA it can help each of us do the same.

This submission describes a personal perspective on an aspect of the ELCA benefit program that may or may not reflect the experience of others.

email Share your Wellness Voice at livewell@porticobenefits.org

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