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How Cummins is Tackling Healthcare Costs

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Cummins Live Well Center | Columbus, OH

COLUMBUS, Ind. — Jeff Booher would be the first to admit he’s not the kind of person you’d expect to see attending a class on how to cook food based entirely from plants. The 23-year facility maintenance employee at Cummins Inc. has had coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes. His health was not improving despite costly medications.

Sometimes it takes a crisis to bring about change. Booher and his wife, Mary Booher, now are enthusiastic devotees of Sandy Thomas, a Culinary Institute of America-trained chef who teaches plant-based cooking in a sparkling kitchen-classroom at Cummins’ new 28,000-square-foot Live-Well Center health clinic here.

That’s right — classes in plant-based cooking are being offered in the Hoosier heartland by one of the world’s largest diesel engine makers and the No. 33-ranked company on the Automotive News list of top 100 global parts suppliers.

Thomas’ wholesome recipes have helped Booher get off some of those medications.

“I’m off the blood pressure medicine totally,” says Booher, who, along with his wife, has been faithfully attending cooking classes since the LiveWell Center opened last summer. “We like Chef Sandy. She’s good.”

Cummins, long an innovator in technology and corporate best practices, is trying a new approach to tackle one of the business world’s knottiest problems — the skyrocketing cost of U.S. health care.

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