Welcome to the April 2 Monday Business Briefing, your business intelligence digest from Insider Louisville.

Humana hits setback in Bold Goal initiative in Louisville

Humana’s efforts to improve the health of Louisvillians hit a snag last year as older citizens reported a slight increase in the number of unhealthy days they experienced.

Louisville was among three communities that reported more unhealthy days, while four other communities recorded improvements.

Humana is implementing comprehensive, region-specific, evidence-based programs with the help of local partners to achieve an overarching goal of making the communities it serves 20 percent healthier by 2020. The insurer is using the metric “healthy days,” which also is used by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In a recent progress report of its Bold Goal initiative, Humana said the number of healthy days reported by patients in Louisville declined by 2.4 percent last year — though the number of healthy days reported by Medicare members with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) increased by 1 percent.

The company’s areas of focus in Louisville include the city’s poor air quality, suicide prevention, diabetes and addressing cultural and social barriers to health.

Pattie Dale Tye

Despite the setback in Louisville, Pattie Dale Tye, vice president of Humana’s Bold Goal, said that the company was encouraged by improvements in other cities and among its employees, many of whom work in Louisville.

“Humana has acknowledged that health is hard,” she told Insider via email. “We’ve also committed to the health of our communities, our members, and our associates because health is more than worth the hard work it requires.”

Locally, Humana is working primarily with the Louisville Health Advisory Board. Committees last year supported suicide awareness and prevention events including the Out of the Darkness Walk, hosted a diabetes roundtable and organized two free lung screening clinics for the uninsured.

This year, Humana’s plans include supporting the Louisville Metro Housing Authority to become smoke-free; increasing enrollment in a diabetes prevention program by 25 percent and focusing on “Question, Persuade, Refer” training, which is a CPR-like response for mental health crises;

“We will not be deterred from our goal,” Tye said. “Health is too important, and small improvements can lead to big change.” Boris Ladwig.

Bellarmine to buy medical center, thanks to anonymous donor

Watterson Medical Center | Courtesy of Bellarmine

Bellarmine University plans to buy the Watterson Medical Center for $11 million to diversify the university’s endowment.

The university said in a news release that $5 million of the purchase price would come from a $5 million anonymous donor — the largest individual gift in the university’s history.

The remainder will come from the university’s endowment funds, and the property will be held as part of the university’s endowment investments. Bellarmine said revenue from leases would generate a 7 percent annual return.

Tenants in the 80,000-square-foot facility include a Veterans Affairs Healthcare Center, Frazier Rehab and Rheumatology Associates.

“The Watterson Medical Center’s mix of primary care and specialty services — including health care programs for U.S. veterans — makes it an important community asset, especially for the neighborhoods surrounding it, which have more challenging health outcomes than other parts of Louisville,” Bellarmine President Susan M. Donavan said.

“Owning this medical center — and finding ways to support and enhance the valuable community health services it offers — makes perfect sense for us, given Bellarmine’s history of community leadership and service,” she said.

The facility sits on 7.3 areas that adjoin 11 acres the university bought in 2015.

Bill Mudd, chairman of the university’s board, said, “While the purchase diversifies the university’s endowment into commercial real estate, the property is also adjacent to our new sports park and its tenants are predominantly in life sciences, which is strategically important to our curriculum.”

The university said that it “has no current plans to change the commercial property’s use.” It plans to close the deal in April. Boris Ladwig.

Cryotherapy business opens its doors today

Pictured from left: The Cryo Club owners Dane Mattingly, Iris Mattingly, Sara Kowzan and Russ Kowzan | Courtesy of The Cryo Club

The Cryo Club isn’t Walt Disney’s cryogenics. The new business, which is opening Monday in the East End, uses a specialized machine to cool customers’ bodies and provide health benefits.

“They call it a modern-age ice bath,” said Iris Mattingly, one of four co-owners of The Cryo Club, located at 12101 Sycamore Station Place, Suite 101.

Mattingly, her husband, Dane Mattingly, and their neighbors Sara and Ross Kowzan are all partners in the business. Iris Mattingly and Sara Kowzan will manage the day-to-day operations along with an employee.

The idea came from the self-help book author and speaker Tony Robbins, who spoke about using cryotherapy to recover from travel on his podcast, Sara Kowzan said, noting that it is not as painful as an ice bath.

Here’s what a cryotherapy machine looks like. | Courtesy of The Cryo Club

Benefits of cryotherapy listed on The Cryo Club’s website include reduction in inflammation, better recovery from injuries or surgery, pain relief and boosted metabolism, among others. The cold temperatures drive blood into people’s cores, reoxygenating it quickly before goes back out into the farther reaches of the body after the therapy, Kowzan explained.

The Cryo Club is starting up with one machine, with the hopes of adding more in the future depending on the amount of business they see. According to multiple reports, a cryotherapy machine, which uses liquid nitrogen to reach temperatures well below freezing, can cost as much as or more than a new car.

When customers visit The Cryo Club, they will receive socks, slippers and gloves to help keep those portions of their extremities from getting too cold. Then in their underwear and the provided clothes, they step into the cryotherapy machine, which then adjusts so that their head sticks out.

Customers can choose what level they’d like and stay in the machine for up to three minutes.

“It is created to be an in and out, super quick kind of thing,” Mattingly said.

It reaches frigid temperatures ranging from minus 166 degrees to minus 320 degrees.

“That is where the research shows it starts to benefit,” Kowzan said, adding that cryotherapy takes less time and doesn’t have the recovery time like an actual ice bath.

A single visit to The Cryo Club costs $59, but it offers packages and monthly memberships that range from $129 for three sessions to $299 a month for daily visits. Discounts are available for students, military and first responders.

Its hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays through Fridays; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesdays; and 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays. — Caitlin Bowling

Leadership Louisville announces speakers for 100 Wise Women series

Chef Damaris Phillips | Courtesy of Leadership Louisville

A celebrity chef, FBI agent, newswoman and restaurant executive are all slated to share their experiences and wisdom at  Leadership Louisville’s annual 100 Wise Women series.

The series will kick off May 16 with Damaris Phillips, a Louisville native and co-host of Food Network shows “Southern & Hungry” with Rutledge Wood and “The Bobby and Damaris Show” with Bobby Flay.

Registration is now open for the May event, which will be from 8 to 10 a.m. at The Olmsted, 3701 Frankfort Ave.

The cost of tickets are $35. The proceeds go toward the Joan Riehm Women’s Leadership Fund, which was created to help women to participate in Leadership Louisville programs.

The three other 100 Wise Women events will feature FBI Special Agent in Charge Amy Hess on June 27; Wave3 News anchor Shannon Cogan on Sept. 13; and Texas Roadhouse Diversity Director Carolyn Tandy on Nov. 27. — Caitlin Bowling

Louisville restaurant reopening after monthslong closure

Artesano Vino Tapas Y Mas is located in Westport Village. | Photo by Steve Coomes

After a water leak in the roof forced Artesano Vino Tapas Y Más to close in late January, the tapas bar and restaurant in Westport Village is finally reopening.

The owners of Artesano Vino Tapas Y Más, Louisville-based Olé Restaurant Group, took advantage of the needed closure and decided to build a 50-person private party room and revamp the menu.

“We are coming back better than ever with a new menu, we have taken our time close and built a private room to fit all your private party needs. We are also adding Open table so you can make reservation at your convenience,” a post on the restaurant group’s Facebook states.

Artesano Vino Tapas Y Más is now slated to reopen on April 6. Its hours will be 3 to 10 p.m. daily with sangria, beer and wine happy hour and $2 Spanish montaditos food specials from 3 to 6 p.m. The restaurant will start serving its regular menu at 4:30 p.m. every day.

Olé Restaurant Group recently brought on an investment partner Bluegrass Capital Advisors that will help the company expand. The company’s growth plans so far have been focused on fast casual taco restaurant El Taco Luchador. — Caitlin Bowling

In Brief

Chamber of commerce Greater Louisville Inc. has named the following voting members to its board of directors: Theresa Canaday, department chair of litigation at Frost Brown Todd; Gerard Colman, chief executive of Baptist Health; Nick D’Andrea, vice president of public affairs at UPS; and Sam Scales, manager of government affairs at Ford Motor Co.

Norton Healthcare has been named a LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the health care provider said in a news release. Norton was among 418 facilities nationwide to receive the honor.