The good health of our workforce is a high priority. In 2013, Occidental expanded its longstanding wellness initiative, launching the OxyHealth program to encourage active lifestyles and physical fitness. Since launching, OxyHealth has had a direct impact on reduced absenteeism, long-term disability, and short-term disability. In 2015, 26% of employees participating in Oxy's Vitality wellness program completed a Health Risk Assessment. The percentage of employees with elevated risk have decreased for eight of the risk factors, and a net improvement of 5.6% has been achieved in the risk groups overall.
Occidental is committed to offering programs that guide employees along the journey to better health, and providing them with resources, education, tools, and positive support to achieve their personal wellness goals. Occidental has distributed more than 13,000 personal activity-monitoring devices to date and reimbursed more than 4,500 employees for the majority of their fitness membership fees. Occidental also provides access to a company-wellness platform with information and interactive tools that help employees create personalized wellness plans specifically designed to meet their needs. OxyHealth programs support early detection of risks, which enables employees to undertake lifestyle changes to lessen or eliminate the potential concern, as well as establish and meet targets that leads to better long-term health. Employees can also compete within the company wellness platform to earn points for healthy behaviors and activities, which can be redeemed for rewards, such as gift cards and fitness devices. The wellness platform also encompasses relevant information, articles and webinars on a variety of health topics. Occidental's promotion of physical activity in 2015 included a six week activity-based points challenge among our U.S. employees and expats, where employees competed to earn points for chances to win incentives and awards. Other OxyHealth events in 2015 included on-site biometric screenings, health fairs, a family fun run 5k and 10k, and educational workshops led by specialists such as doctors, registered dietitians, and acupuncturists.
On an annual basis, Occidental provides employees and spouses with flu vaccinations, travel immunizations prior to international travel, and access to a number of local resources, such as the MD Anderson Mobile Mammography Program which provides mammogram screenings to women in the greater Houston area. Annual physicals are fully covered for employees through Occidental's benefit plans and many of Occidental's office locations host annual health fairs providing complimentary health checks for employees and their families.
Through its employee benefits program, Occidental also offers an Employee Assistance Program that provides employees and their dependents with complimentary access to counseling services to help with personal or work-related challenges. The program provides confidential assistance 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
In addition to maintaining safe and healthy work environments for its workforce, Occidental is committed to promoting outreach programs that enhance the wellness of neighboring communities. We contribute to a number of health organizations both domestically and internationally to support this commitment. At many Occidental locations, for example, regular blood drives are held to assist with trauma and disease-related issues. Some of our key partners include the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center in the U.S., the Ministry of Health in Oman and the Hamad Medical Corporation Blood Donor Unit in Qatar. More examples of Occidental’s community projects can be found among the SR Profiles listed on the
Health and Safety page.