Naples and Southwest Fla. Well-Being on the Rise

Annual Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index study shows gains in overall well-being

NAPLES, Florida (Oct. 17, 2017) – An investment in community well-being is paying off in Southwest Florida, as the latest Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index® report shows a community-wide gain in overall well-being and an increase in residents who describe themselves as thriving in five key areas of well-being. The annual study was conducted earlier this year as part of the community’s efforts surrounding Blue Zones Project®, a community-led well-being improvement initiative that focuses on changing the environment around us to make healthy choices easier.

The Well-Being Index is a scientific survey instrument that measures, tracks, and reports on the well-being of individuals and organizations nationwide. For the last two years, the Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) has ranked number one in the nation for well-being. The local oversample survey, conducted during a seven-week period beginning May 12, 2017, two years after Blue Zones Project officially launched in Southwest Florida, showed similarly impressive results.

Southwest Florida’s overall Well-Being Index score edged up 0.6 points, from 68.6 in 2015 to 69.2 in 2017. The community saw a 10 percent drop in daily stress with a smoking rate of just over nine percent, well below national averages. When looking at exercise and healthy eating, the community saw a 4.3 percent increase in those who exercise at least 30 minutes three days per week and a 4.7 percent increase in those who eat five or more servings of produce four or more days a week. Southwest Florida also experienced an eight percent increase in the number of residents who learn or do something interesting daily and saw a 7.5 percent increase in those who indicate their friends and family give them positive energy every day.

“We are encouraged by our Well-Being Index results, which show movement toward increased well-being among residents across the community,” said Deb Logan, Blue Zones Project Southwest Florida executive director. “We know there is more work to be done, and thanks to a strong network of community partners working toward the same goal, we believe we will continue to make strides in our efforts to improve the health of this community.”

In addition to the community impact metrics, the Well-Being Index also measures the percentage of the population that is thriving in the five key elements of well-being—purpose, social, financial, community, and physical. According to the Well-Being Index, Southwest Florida residents report an increase in thriving across four of the five well-being elements, with the highest gains in social, financial and purpose well-being. The Well-Being Index report is based on surveys from area residents from across Collier County and Bonita Springs and Estero. Surveys were completed in both English and Spanish.

“As a health system caring for the people of Southwest Florida, we are actively improving well-being, not only by managing illness and injury, but also by identifying ways in which we can create a healthier and more active community for all our residents,” says Allen S. Weiss, M.D., president and CEO of NCH Healthcare System. “We are bringing together schools, grocery stores, restaurants, employers, civic organizations and other groups in a true cross-community collaboration. As of now, 15,000 early adopters (and counting) have joined us in this grassroots transformation—momentum that underscores our residents’ commitment to living their healthiest lives.”

Brought to Southwest Florida by NCH Healthcare System, in collaboration with Sharecare®, Inc. and Blue Zones, LLC, Blue Zones Project is a vital part of Southwest Florida’s well-being improvement initiative that encourages changes in the community that lead to healthier options. For more information about Blue Zones Project - Southwest Florida, visit southwestflorida.bluezonesproject.com

About NCH Healthcare System

The NCH Healthcare System is a not-for-profit, multi-facility healthcare system located in Naples, Florida, United States.  The System is more than just two hospitals (referred to as the NCH Downtown Naples Hospital, and NCH North Naples Hospital) with a total of 716 beds.  The NCH Healthcare System is an alliance of 775 physicians and medical facilities in dozens of locations throughout Collier County and southwest Florida. The services offered by the NCH Healthcare System are extensive.  Inpatient services include:  medical, surgical, cardiac, orthopedic, obstetric, pediatric, rehabilitative, psychiatric, oncology, emergency treatment, and diagnostics.  Outpatient services include:  rehabilitation, home care, urgent care, wound healing, and more.  This year the system had 39,000 admissions, 111,000 emergency room visits, 3,600 births, 405 open heart surgeries, 11,800 surgical procedures, and 4,300 employee colleagues. NCH is a member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network. NCH’s mission is to help everyone live a longer, happier, healthier life.  NCH is sponsoring the Blue Zones Project for Southwest Florida. For more information, visit NCHmd.org.

About Blue Zones Project

Blue Zones Project® is a community-led well-being improvement initiative designed to make healthy choices easier through permanent changes to a city’s environment, policy, and social networks. Established in 2010, Blue Zones Project is inspired by Dan Buettner, a National Geographic Fellow and New York Times best-selling author who identified five regions of the world—or Blue Zones®—with the highest concentration of people living to 100 years or older. Blue Zones Project incorporates Buettner’s findings and works with cities to implement policies and programs that will move a community toward optimal health and well-being. Currently, 42 communities in nine states have joined Blue Zones Project, impacting more than 3.3 million Americans nationwide. The movement includes three beach cities in California; 15 cities in Iowa; Albert Lea, Minnesota; the city of Fort Worth; and communities in Southwest Florida, Hawaii, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Wisconsin. For more information, visit bluezonesproject.com.

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Contact:
Kate Walter, MA, APR
Engagement Lead
Blue Zones Project - Southwest Florida
239-537-2346
Kate.Walter@sharecare.com

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