State Rep wants to pay you for being healthy - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

State Rep wants to pay you for being healthy

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December 20, 2007

Valdosta - Would you like to be rewarded simply for being healthy?

State Senator Tim Golden thinks you should be.  "We reward people with a good driving record, for not smoking, on the drugs free work program we award people for having a drug free workplace so why not do the same thing for healthcare."

Senator Golden is teaming up with the Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber of Commerce and Partnership for Health to make it happen through a wellness pilot program they hope will motivate Georgians to live healthy. 

And reward them for it.  "The pilot program will showcase best practices and prevention, disease management, technology incentives and consumer education," says Brian Stadsvold, with the Chamber of Commerce.

Golden believes the program will also decrease health care costs.

"Anything we can do to reduce health insurance costs means we can cover more people. The more people we cover means we can drop the uninsured rates in Georgia and alleviate some of the pain on hospitals."

He hopes to begin the program in Valdosta and other communities to prove it works.  "We really think we can prove the date by doing this for a couple of years, gather the data an prove to insurance companies and cities that we can set up a program rewarding people for a healthy lifestyle will actually reduce the cost of health insurance," he says.

He then wants to initiate it statewide so all Georgians can be rewarded for getting fit.

Golden plans to introduce the plan during the upcoming General Assembly session.

He hopes the pilot program will begin in July.

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