June 24, 2008

Fairway Medical Center Employees Take Steps to Better Health

Medical center kicks off Louisiana 2 Step team participation with Walk@Lunch event June 30

The employees of Fairway Medical Center in Covington have joined the Louisiana 2 Step program sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana as an official 2 Step team. The Louisiana 2 Step is a public health program encouraging all Louisiana residents to take two small daily steps toward better health: eat right and move more.

On Monday, June 30, Fairway Medical Center employees will move more as they kick off their Louisiana 2 Step participation with a Walk@Lunch event from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the company's headquarters. At the same time, CEO David Guzan will issue a challenge to other Northshore employers to join his company in taking steps to a healthier lifestyle.

By joining the Louisiana 2 Step, Fairway Medical Center encourages its employees to sign up for the program online at This free, fun and interactive website allows employees to set goals, track their weight and find a healthy weight and calorie range. The site also offers educational and motivational tools, such as virtual coaches, to inspire employees to make healthier lifestyle choices.

"We realize that with better lifestyle choices, employees tend to be happier and more productive," Guzan said. "If we can give our employees the tools necessary to help them lead a healthier lifestyle, it will benefit them at home and work and may possibly decrease our health insurance claims expense over time."

Guzan will open the walk event with brief remarks and will lead the first group of walkers on a course mapped out around the medical center's campus. Employees will receive free Blue Cross pedometers and walking logs to help them track their steps. They will also sign up online for their company's Louisiana 2 Step team and get more information on how to improve their health through both activity and healthy eating.

Recent research has shown that small lifestyle changes can add up to better health and lowered risk for obesity-related diseases. For example, eating five or more servings of fruits and vegetables per day can help prevent heart disease, cancer and other chronic conditions. Yet in 2000, 85 percent of Louisianians reported that they did not consume at least five servings of fruit and vegetables per day.

"The 2 Step is a great way for employers to let their workers know that physical activity and healthful eating can be fun," said John Maginnis, Blue Cross vice president of Corporate Communications. "It's easy to add a little extra movement to your daily routine or to reduce your intake of fat and calories."

About Blue Cross
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is Louisiana-owned and -operated. Marking its 74th anniversary this year, the company is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. It is a tax-paying mutual company, owned by policyholders. Headquarted in Baton Rouge, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana also has district offices in Alexandria, Houma, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe, New Orleans and Shreveport. The company's subsidiaries include HMO Louisiana, Inc. and Southern National Life Company, Inc.

About Fairway Medical Center
Fairway Medical Center is a physician-owned hospital with 21 private, patient beds. As the only physician-owned, physician-managed hospital in the Covington area, its success has been built on a high standard for patient care and attention to customer service. Fairway Medical earned the Gold Seal of Approval of The Joint Commission and is named a Center of Excellence for Bariatric Surgery by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). For more information on Fairway Medical Center, call 985.809.9888 or visit