Fall Wellness Opportunities

Each new season brings plenty of new ways for you to take advantage of opportunities that will help you with your overall health and wellness. Here are a few ideas that may help you this fall. 

Take a Survey, Get Rewards! 

Do you have UPMC insurance through the University of Pittsburgh? Did you know that you can get $50 in rewards just for taking the MyHealth Questionnaire every year?  

The MyHealth Questionnaire is a yearly check-in survey that helps UPMC provide you with the tools you need to stay healthy. It only takes about 20 minutes to complete and, when you’re done, you will receive 50 points towards the Health Incentive Rewards Dollars program. When you complete the survey, it will use your answers to recommend other tasks that you can complete to earn even more rewards dollars. For example, you can get 15 points for completing a well visit or 12 points a week for switching to reusable water bottles. All of these points add up to more rewards! 

You don’t have to complete the Questionnaire to participate in the Health Incentive Rewards Dollars program, but it is a quick way to see some instant rewards that you can put toward health-related purchases! To complete the MyHealth Questionnaire, login to your UPMC account, click on the menu button, and select “MyHealth Questionnaire” under the Better Health and Wellness section. 


Get an Immunity Boost 

Flu Season is here! Luckily, you can receive a free flu shot with your UPMC insurance through the University of Pittsburgh. All you have to do is present your member ID card when they ask for proof of insurance. No need to submit for reimbursement, just get your shot and feel confident that you did your part in helping to make this flu season a bit more bearable. Not to mention—those Health Incentive Rewards Dollars we discussed? You can get points towards your rewards for getting your flu shot! 

Speaking of immunity, the latest COVID boosters are officially available. You can get the latest booster free of charge through Pitt-provided UPMC insurance. For the health and well-being of our entire campus community, the University still encourages everyone to remain up to date on their COVID vaccines and boosters. 


Fall in Love with Learning 

A new term of Faculty and Staff Development Program classes is underway! If you haven’t signed up yet, don’t worry—the program has rolling admission and you are welcome to sign up for classes that interest you at any time! With a mix of in-person and virtual classes covering a variety of topics to help you with your personal and career goals, there is something for everybody. Whether you want to complete an entire certificate program or just take a class that interests you, we encourage you to sign up today! You are welcome to participate in FSDP regardless of which Pitt campus you work at. 


Disruptive Event Resources 

We are living through difficult times and understand that you sometimes need extra support through the events life brings your way. We want you to have the resources you need so you don’t feel like you’re facing your challenges alone.  

If you, a colleague, or a loved one needs support, please refer to our Disruptive Event Resources. If the situation you’re experiencing is eligible, you may also want to consider applying for the Employee Emergency Fund. This is a new program launched to provide financial support to members of our Pitt community experiencing hardship. 

You are not alone. Don’t be afraid to ask for the help that is available to you. 


Resources to Care for Yourself and Others 

In addition to connecting you with caregivers for loved ones at all phases of life, Care.com hosts free webinars at least once a week to provide you with resources and advice to help you care for yourself and others. Topics range from caring for elderly loved ones to financial wellness. Check out our events calendar for a full list of upcoming talks!  


Stay One Step Ahead of Seasonal Affective Disorder 

The days are already getting shorter, which means people who live with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) are already starting to see the impact. According to the SELF, “It’s worth spending some time now considering how the coming months will affect your mental health before you’re too deep in it and struggling to find the motivation.” If you struggle with SAD, start planning now to help make this winter as easy as possible for you by setting up therapy appointments, learning more about LifeSolutions (which offers free counseling and support 24 hours a day), or participating in a program like the Center for Creativity and University Counseling Center’sMaking Connections” weekly art group. 


Supporting Your Community 

Fall isn’t just a season of thankfulness; it’s a time for togetherness. Come together to support your community by donating to Pitt’s United Way Campaign or registering for a volunteer opportunity.  

This year’s United Way campaign recently launched and provides Pitt employees with a way to provide essential funds to organizations that need them. There are multiple ways to donate so that you feel empowered to do so in a way that suits you best. These donations are critical to helping members of our community get the resources they need. 

Pitt Serves connects you to organizations that have opportunities for volunteers who are excited to give back through their time, talents, and energy. They have opportunities that cover different interests and skill sets, so there’s something for everyone! Don’t forget that eligible employees are entitled to 7.5 hours of paid volunteer time per month! 


BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag) 

The City of Pittsburgh recently introduced a plastic bag ban that impacts retailers and restaurants within the city limits. The ban prohibits single use plastic bags and non-recycled paper bags from being provided to customers in an effort to promote sustainability. People may be asked to pay for paper bags at a minimum cost of 10 cents per bag, so shoppers are encouraged to bring their own reusable options. If you’re feeling crafty, you may have some fun making some DIY reusable bags out of upcycled fabric!  

How do these bans make a difference? For starters, only 9% of plastic is successfully recycled. Many of the small pieces of single use plastics like bags and cutlery can ultimately get stuck in recycling machinery and damage important tools and ruin entire batches of recyclables. The goal is to reduce plastic waste overall and plastic bags are a starting point to help us reach larger sustainability goals.