A managed care company is helping employers use gift cards, merchandise and other rewards as health improvement motivators.

CIGNA HealthCare, Bloomfield, Conn., a unit of CIGNA Corp., Philadelphia, says it now is offering a new CIGNA Incentive Points program to employer group health customers.

The standard plan allows individuals earn up to 200 points per year, with each point having a value of about $1, but employers can adjust the cap, CIGNA says.

Plan members can earn points by participating in activities such as completing a health assessment or biometric screenings; reaching milestones in condition management programs, such as programs for people with diabetes; or participating in a lifestyle management program, such as a tobacco cessation program.