SWEDISHAMERICAN TO OPEN PRIMARY CARE WELLNESS CENTER SERVING FCA BELVIDERE ASSEMBLY PLANT EMPLOYEES AND THEIR FAMILIES

  • The FCA Family Health and Wellness Center-Belvidere is a primary care, near-site health facility established to serve more than 8,600 FCA employees and their covered family members
  • FCA partners with SwedishAmerican Health System to provide a personalized, physician-led healthcare experience through comprehensive services and wellness programs
  • The wellness center’s primary benefits include improved, proactive health care at a lower cost for employees and their families
  • The wellness center joins the growing trend of large U.S. employers establishing primary care facilities
  • SwedishAmerican has been operating employer-based wellness centers in the Stateline region since 2017

BELVIDERE, Illinois – FCA and SwedishAmerican, a Division of UW Health, announced today plans to open a physician-led, primary care wellness center in Belvidere, Ill., exclusively for the more than 8,600 FCA employees and their families working and living near the Company’s Belvidere Assembly Plant.  More than 77 percent of eligible employees and their family members live within 15 miles of the plant that builds the Jeep® Cherokee.

The FCA Family Health and Wellness Center-Belvidere will provide a convenient, low- to no-cost option for acute, preventive and wellness-focused primary care services for all FCA employees and their families enrolled in the Company’s health care plan. Bargaining unit employees, representing 88 percent of the area’s workforce, will not be charged any office visit co-pay. Non-bargaining (NBU) unit employees enrolled in the high-deductible health care plan will receive care at a discounted rate in accordance with IRS rules.

“We are very excited for this new opportunity and proud to begin a partnership with FCA,” said Jennifer Maher, President and CEO, SwedishAmerican. “This employer-based medical home model has proven to be very successful for us in the past, as it allows for improved and easy access to comprehensive and affordable healthcare services and wellness programs.”

The wellness center is located at 1625 S. State Street, approximately two miles from the Belvidere plant. The FCA Family Health and Wellness Center-Belvidere opens July 22 and will be the fourth employer-based wellness center for SwedishAmerican.

“Belvidere is the perfect location to launch our second primary care near-site wellness center given the size and proximity of the employee community in the area,” said Brad Thompson, Director - Health Care & Disability, FCA. “Sustaining a healthy workplace and promoting the well-being of our employees and their families plays a key role in the success of our business.”

FCA, with support from the UAW, was the first domestic automaker to establish a near-site health wellness center, with the opening of a site in Kokomo, Ind., in 2018. Now, the Company is part of the growing trend of large U.S. employers creating wellness centers as a means of improving member access to quality health care.

In January 2017, SwedishAmerican began with its first employer-based wellness center model when they opened the doors to the SwedishAmerican Woodward Health Center. They currently have three employer-based centers serving 31 local employers in the Stateline region. An independent two-year look back of results from 2017-2018 produced the following outcomes from the model that FCA will now be offering to their members:

  • The total allowed annual costs per member for SwedishAmerican Medical Group Employer-Based Wellness Center participants decreased by 7.3 percent
  • Patients enrolled in the employer-based model demonstrated improved rates for preventative exams and drug adherence over patients in the traditional fee-for-service setting
  • Specialty care utilization went down by 11.7 percent because the clinic allows for more time with the provider ensuring more comprehensive visits
  • Costs associated with chronic conditions such as diabetes and hypertension decreased by 45 percent, emergency department utilization and inpatient visits went down as much as 13 percent

SwedishAmerican is one of the largest employers in the Rockford, Ill., area, serving the Stateline’s residents for more than 109 years. SwedishAmerican offers patients access not only to primary care providers and wellness services through this new wellness center, but also to specialists from UW Health in Madison, Wis.

Dr. Trinath Kuruvella, APRN Macy Klumpp and PA-C Gregory Campbell will serve as the wellness center’s primary care providers. There is no minimum age for treatment.

While the focus of the wellness center will be on local employees and their families, FCA employees traveling to that region for business are also able to utilize the wellness center’s services. Additionally, the center will offer phone interpreting and translation services for patients that need it.

Citing high per capita healthcare costs and a shortage of primary care physicians in Illinois, FCA expects the Belvidere wellness center will create a more personalized and distinct healthcare experience. Featuring same-day appointments, the wellness center will connect members with a primary care physician. 

The wellness center will also administer a holistic approach to health across lifestyle, fitness, and medical integrations, and provide a perfect venue for managing chronic conditions such as hypertension and diabetes. The wellness center staff will consist of doctors, nurse practitioners, nurses, medical assistants, x-ray technicians, patient health advocates/patient-nurse coordinators, chronic disease managers, dietitians, office manager, receptionists and account managers.

Significant benefits are anticipated for the individual members and their dependents by reducing emergency room and urgent care visits; reducing referrals and visits to specialists for costly treatment and service; recommending fewer and shorter hospital stays; and avoiding future high-cost claims by addressing chronic conditions earlier.

About FCA Health and Wellness

A long-established innovator in providing programs and services to support the health and wellness of employees and families, FCA has been recognized nine consecutive years by the National Business Group on Health for programs that enable a healthy workplace and encourage healthy lifestyles for both employees and families. FCA is committed to "4URHLTH," a program designed to support overall well-being that empowers employees and their families with access to comprehensive tools and resources for leading healthier lifestyles.

Since 1985, the Company’s wellness program has evolved to meet the needs of employees and their families. Today, FCA provides a variety of integrated health plans with preventive services. This comprehensive approach to supporting employee well-being includes access to health portals; UAW benefit representatives; a Health Advocate for salaried employees; an Employee Assistance Program representative for all employees; on-site medical departments; 25 dedicated wellness staff members; fitness centers; and an on-site retail medical wellness center and pharmacy at the Company’s U.S. headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich.

 About FCA Belvidere Assembly

Construction of the Belvidere Assembly Plant began in 1964 and the first car rolled off the line on July 7, 1965. Over the years, the plant has produced a variety of models from the Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Plymouth brands. Following the alliance between Fiat and Chrysler Group in 2009, the Company invested $700 million in the plant to construct an all-new body shop to produce the Dodge Dart, a vehicle that showcased the combined engineering and technologies of the two companies. In 2016, the Company announced another $350 million investment to retool the plant to build the Jeep Cherokee, which was being relocated from the north plant of the Toledo (Ohio) Assembly Complex. Production of the Jeep Cherokee began in June 2017. The plant employs more than 3,800 people working two shifts.

About SwedishAmerican:

A division of UW Health, SwedishAmerican is dedicated to providing excellence in healthcare and compassionate care to the community. The organization serves residents of 12 counties in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin through a dedicated and caring staff, a major acute care hospital and a free-standing outpatient cancer center in Rockford, a medical center in Belvidere, a network of 30 primary care and multi-specialty clinics, and the region’s largest home healthcare agency. SwedishAmerican has also administered employer-based clinics since 2017 and serves 31 local organizations within the model. Additionally, SwedishAmerican has achieved Magnet® recognition as a reflection of its nursing professionalism, teamwork and superiority in patient care.