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September 1, 2017

IDEXX one of three U.S. companies honored for employee health efforts

Photo / Jim Neuger
Photo / Jim Neuger
Giovani Twigge, IDEXX's chief human resources officer, runs on a treadmill at the company's wellness center within its Westbrook headquarters.

IDEXX Laboratories Inc. (NASDAQ:IDXX), a Westbrook-based provider of diagnostic tests for pets, poultry and livestock, has been recognized for its efforts to improve employee health.

It is one of only three U.S. companies to receive honorable mention from the C. Everett Koop National Health Award, named for the former surgeon general of the United States. The others are Delta Air Lines Inc. and Pepsico Inc.

The award, administered by a Washington, D.C..-based nonprofit organization called The Health Project, recognizes companies for their efforts to improve workers' health while exerting a positive business impact.

This year, the board determined that there was no winner of the Koop Award, only the three honorable mentions. They will be honored on Sept. 12 in Phoenix, at the annual Health Enhancement Research Organization Forum.

IDEXX employs more than 7,500 people in 49 states and over 30 countries.

In its announcement, The Health Project said that IDEXX's comprehensive wellness program has since 2011 "built a culture of health and well-being, with strong support from senior leadership."

It added: "Investment in employees' health has produced reductions in health care costs, higher engagement in work, and increased fitness program participation. This has allowed IDEXX to reinvest savings into improved employee benefit programs including an increased 401(k) match and expanded family-friendly benefits."

In an "On the Record" interview with Mainebiz in May, Giovani Twigge, IDEXX's chief human resources officer, said that employees can use the on-site wellness and fitness center for free and are only charged if they don't use it, and that it's also open to partners and spouses.

He concluded the two-hour interview and tour by hopping on a treadmill for a midday run.

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