The Russellville School District (RSD) jumped into a new wellness initiative that is part of the school board’s goals that were recently established by offering a free health screening to every employee.

Nearly 200 employees participated. Kyle Turner, a health consultant of the Wellness Works Department from Saint Mary Regional Health System, visited every campus. The health screening provided such information as blood pressure, pulse ox, body mass index and body fat.

“It’s important for people to know their numbers, and it’s eye-opening to some people and drives them to become healthier,” Turner said. “It’s rewarding for me to promote health, wellness and safety to people. It’s what I love and what I’m passionate about. If we can make all our workplaces healthier and safer, it’s a win for everyone.”

Karla Jacobs, sixth-grade social studies teacher, said, “I thought the screening was very informative. I gained some valuable information to help me become healthier and make a better me. I felt the way this information was gathered was done so in a way that was totally confidential and that made me comfortable in completing the screening.”

Annie Schanink, nurse coordinator for RSD, said, “Saint Mary’s came to each school and offered free health screenings to all RSD employees. Several staff members that work with me were told they had elevated blood pressures at these screenings. I have assisted with following up on their blood pressure readings by monitoring their blood pressure when requested during the school day. The Saint Mary’s wellness visits were very beneficial for the RSD employees. We really appreciate Saint Mary’s efforts on this great opportunity for our staff.”