Harvard selects King County for national Innovations award

Monday, May 26, 2014

Reforms at King County that have saved tens of millions of dollars in public services were recognized today by Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, which presented its 2013 Innovations in American Government Award to the county's nationally recognized employee wellness program.

"Healthy Incentives takes a creative approach to a significant problem faced by jurisdictions across the country -- resulting in tremendous savings to municipal budgets and taxpayers," said Stephen Goldsmith, director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard Kennedy School. "It is our hope that by recognizing Healthy Incentives, we can encourage government entities to learn from program's innovation."

The program has saved an estimated $46 million since it was launched in 2006. The smoking rate among employees dropped by more than half, from 12 percent to less than 5 percent, and participating employees combined for a total weight loss of 24 tons.



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