A new program is helping area businesses and industries with their occupational health and wellness needs by connecting their employees to health care services and education. 

Bothwell Wellness Works was formed in April 2019 to serve as a “one-stop shop” for employers in Pettis and Benton counties said Melissa Guffin, corporate health consultant.

“We found there was a gap between what companies needed to number one, make sure their employees are ready to work and number two, their health care needs after they become employees,” Guffin said. “Bothwell Wellness Works closes that gap.” 

The program focuses on three areas: assist employers with pre-employment requirements; provide preventive health assessments and screenings; and facilitate medical care for work-related injuries and illnesses.

Bothwell Wellness Works serves companies of all sizes but since opening has focused on companies with 50 or more employees because federal law requires them to provide benefits. There are 45 companies in both counties that are utilizing services.

“While we target businesses with 50 or more employees, we have worked with some that have as few as eight,” Guffin said. “The services we provide are really helpful for small to midsize companies with a small or no HR staff and even larger companies with a busy HR team.”

Amy Franklin, ProEnergy mobilization manager, is responsible for the hiring, onboarding and drug screening for the company’s temporary employees. She said it’s nice to have one dedicated person to help them arrange pre-employment requirements.

“Melissa is really on top of all the details,” Franklin said. “She’s very accommodating and is good at getting the issues ironed out for us so that we have time to focus on other aspects of the onboarding process.” 

Some program services are free and others have costs. They include Department of Transportation (DOT) and non-DOT drug screens and pre-employment physicals, mask fitting, pulmonary (lung) function testing, breath alcohol testing, immunizations, vaccinations, and medical treatment. Educational safety and health offerings include blood pressure and body mass index screenings, safety and health awareness education and presentations, and support at health fairs. 

“Education and screenings are aimed at prevention but can also mean intervention,” Guffin said. “For instance, a blood pressure screening may identify an employee’s health issue. We then ask if they have a primary care provider, and if not, we make an appointment for them.” 

The Bothwell Employee Wellness Clinic provides medical support to the program and staff includes Shannon Murley, nurse practitioner; Brianna Murray, licensed practical nurse; and Sarah Anderson, medical assistant. 

“Shannon is a certified DOT medical examiner,” Guffin said. “And other staff hold certifications to offer services to meet employer needs.”

The process is simple and free for a company to sign up for Bothwell Wellness Works services.

“It starts with a conversation about what help they need and what is missing that we can provide,” she said. “From there, we gather information into a written scope of work so that both sides know and understand expectations.” 

Partners receive comprehensive monthly company management reports that tracks employee injuries and what treatment they’ve received, as well as all occupational health history ensuring a high level of communication at all stages of the relationship. 

“My role is to be a liaison between employers and the hospital and its providers,” Guffin said. “My goal is to build trust and rapport between these groups. Healthy employees are happier, which can translate into better productivity and less loss time due to illness or injury.”  

Bothwell Wellness Works is located inside the Bothwell Healing Arts Center, 3700 W. 10th St. For more information, contact Guffin at 660-827-9138 or mguffin@brhc.org. 

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