Walgreens rolls out Balance Rewards program

Walgreens announced the new Balance Rewards for healthy choices initiatives, which is aimed at helping participants modify behavior risk factors associated with the nation's most pressing public health issues. The initiative marks the first community pharmacy program that includes training based on the methodology of psychologist Dr. B.J. Fogg.

The incentive will reward members who adopt healthy habits with Balance Reward points, Walgreens said. Select pharmacists and online Pharmacy Chat agents will receive behavior change training led by Dr. Fogg, which will provide the necessary resources to provide wellness coaching via the Tiny Habits method — an approach to behavior change that involves simple steps that lead to a healthier lifestyle.

“Adopting a consistently healthy action like practicing a balanced diet, exercising more or changing other lifestyle habits is typically not easy,” said Kermit Crawford, Walgreens president of pharmacy, health and wellness. “Through our Balance Rewards for healthy choices initiative, Walgreens encourages participants to adopt healthy actions with the added support and guidance of our pharmacists and Walgreens online Pharmacy Chat agents trained on Dr. Fogg’s Tiny Habits approach. This is a perfect fit for a community pharmacy based program in which our pharmacists have frequent contact with consumers.”

Program members can accrue points by taking part in assorted health-related programs and tracking their progress toward a goal. The program will make this more seamless through the optional use of mobile devices and such apps as MapMyFitness, Lose It!, MyFitnessPal and RunKeeper. Additionally, health plans and other payers will have the ability to define additional activities for their members to earn points.

Rewards for healthy choices are comprised of three elements: exercise and activity; adopting healthy habits; and eating right. The company said it expects the initatives to expand over time.

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