Building Healthy Academic Communities: Promoting evidence-based wellness and improving outcomes from campus to community across the United States
The evidence is irrefutable. There has never been a more critical moment in the health and wellness of the American people. Obesity will soon surpass tobacco as the number one cause of preventable death and disease in the United States. The rate of mental health disorders among Americans is climbing at a precipitous rate. And unhealthy behaviors — smoking, overeating, lack of physical activity — are leading causes of death among Americans.
Although many academic institutions have instituted wellness programs for students and employees, few have implemented a comprehensive and integrated approach to health and wellness. The benefits of doing so cannot be overstated. Multiple studies show that wellness programs delivered in the workplace lead to reductions in health care costs and health insurance premiums, and more importantly, healthier and more engaged students, faculty, and staff.