Penn State will start charging employees $1200 a year if they don't comply with the university's 'Take Care of Your Health' initiative.

By November, staff and their spouses or domestic partners covered by university health care must complete an online wellness profile and physical exam. They are also required to complete a more invasive biometric screening, including a “full lipid profile” and glucose, body mass index and waist circumference measurements. Mobile units from the university’s insurance company, Highmark, will visit campuses to perform these screenings.

In order to avoid this charge, employees will be required to:

  • Complete a WebMD Wellness Profile (both employee and insurance dependent)
  • Commit to completing the Preventive Exam Certification (both employee and insurance dependent) in 2012/13.
  • Complete biometric screenings (employee only)

This kind of thing isn't new, but it is a hugely shitty deal for staff - whether the results are confidential or not, I don't ever want my employer to have that kind of control over my body. Financial penalties for not completing health screenings make me really uncomfortable, and giving third-party companies so much personal information (especially when that company has a vested interest in the outcome) against employees' wishes is just rage-inducing.

More links:

Inside Higher Education

Penn State announcement