Good health is important. Period. But in the military, good health is critical to force and family readiness by allowing service members to perform their responsibilities to the best of their ability.
Naval Health Clinic Patuxent River is urging active-duty service members and DoD civilians onboard NAS Patuxent River to participate in Health Risk Assessment 2.0 by completing an anonymous short survey designed to help identify a health baseline for our community and target areas that may need attention or improvement.
“We want to know how to intervene, how to initiate appropriate local programs and campaigns,” said Angela Brochu, the clinic’s health promotion and wellness coordinator, who also coordinates the clinic’s Tobacco Cessation and ShipShape programs. “How is our activity-duty doing? What is their individual and command readiness?”
Participation by civilian DoD personnel is also an important component.
“Civilian participation opens up more of the community, and particularly at Pax River, our civilians are part of the mission and play a role in mission readiness,” Brochu noted. “We want to know their health as much as active-duty because without a good basic health foundation and principals, how will we be able to support readiness? Both morale and performance can be affected by poor health.”
Brochu explained that HRA 2.0 is not the Physical Health Assessment required of every active-duty service member.
“PHA is more clinical and not anonymous; it’s part of the member’s AD medical record,” she added. “Ours is a five-minute workplace health risk assessment and is a tool available for employers to understand the risk behavior of their workforce. The only demographics collected will be gender, whether you’re military or civilian, and individual height and weight.”
The survey will cover public health areas such as tobacco, safety, mental health, fitness, nutrition, and sexual health. For example, questions might include how often you drink or use tobacco products; do you wear a seat belt, a helmet, or earplugs; how well do you sleep, or how often do you feel stressed; how much and how long you exercise; do you eat fruits and vegetables, take dietary supplements or use weight loss enhancers; do you use condoms with sexual partners, etc.
“It also asks what health promotion/wellness topics people are interested in learning about, like basic nutrition, diabetes, cholesterol, weight management, or tobacco cessation,” Brochu said. “Also, when and how are people interested in learning: virtually, apps, challenges, lunch and learns, Facebook? That’s where I can really help out.”
In order to take the survey, participants must have a five-digit UIC. After completing the assessment, individuals will receive results and have the opportunity to download a health booklet that provides health risks, lists credible web-based resources and health information, and empowers the user to better manage their personal health.
“It serves as a tool for the user to initiate dialogue with their healthcare provider, if necessary,” Brochu added. “It can also be used to assess the overall health of a command to determine public health areas of concentration. Then, if a command wants to address a situation afterward [through education], I will happily assist with that.”
Notice of HRA 2.0 will be advertised via All Hands, social media, email blasts, the base’s digital marquee, and on posters mounted in high-traffic facilities like the NEX, Drill Hall, and health clinic. Participants can find the survey at https://surveys.max.gov/911272?lang=en or simply scan the QR code.
“The survey doesn’t take long at all,” Brochu said. “I did it on my phone. It was easy.”
If any command/UIC would like to schedule an in-person visit by Brochu, contact her and she’ll gladly stop by with information and the survey.
“It would give me the opportunity to meet people and get to know my community,” she said. “I can answer any questions they may have, I can bring information, and I even have some ‘goodies’ I can hand out, like water bottles, a cookbook, or a tote bag.”
Brochu can be reached by phone at 301-757-9469 or email at email@example.com.