Developing a Health Advocacy Program

Topics: Health care, Health, Public health Pages: 5 (3056 words) Published: October 30, 2014

Developing a Health Advocacy ProgramThere are multiple population health issues that need to be addressed and obesity is one of them. Obesity impacts multiple people but the impact on children has grown. Obesity rates have been steadily rising in children. In 2010, 43 million preschool children were overweight or obese, a 60% increase since 1990. This is an obvious increase and shows no sign of stopping without efforts to combat this epidemic (Harvard School of Public Health, 2014). The purpose of this paper is to discuss advocacy programs that have been successful and to develop a program to help reduce obesity. Coordinated Approach to Child Health

Childhood obesity has more than doubled in the past 30 years. These children are at risk for both immediate and long-term effects on their health and well-being. Children who are obese are more likely to be obese as adults (Centers for Disease Control, 2014). An advocacy program that has helped combat childhood obesity is Coordinated Approach to Child Health (CATCH USA, 2013). It has helped schools and after-school centers become healthy environments. Its curriculum is designed to promote health for students and its core elements include physical activity, nutrition, health education, and healthier food choices. The CATCH program has received state, national, and international recognition for being one of the most comprehensive and ambitious approaches to targeting physical education, food services, and classroom curriculum through a coordinated school health program (CATCH USA, 2013). CATCH began as a university research study and has continuously upgraded their program though evidence-based research. This program was implemented as a clinical trial at four regional sites and succeeded in producing positives and lasting changes in children’s behaviors; decreasing fat consumption and increasing physical activity among children. Today CATCH can be found in 50 states, Canada, and the U.S. Department of Defense Schools around the World (CATCH USA, 2013). CATCH has been successful and effective due to working with the community, partnering with schools, and having large corporations, such as Campbell and Dell, invest millions of dollars into reducing obesity. This program is grounded in evidence-based practices and through years of ongoing research, CATCH has become the gold standard for coordinated school health programs (CATCH USA, 2013). Childhood obesity continues to be a problem that needs to be addressed. CATCH has been influential and successful thus far in improving the health of children. With continuous research and development, CATCH can continue to evolve and improve the lives of children. Let’s Move

Let’s Move is an initiative that was launched in 2010 by First Lady Michelle Obama, to help raise a healthier generation of kids and to combat childhood obesity (Let’s Move, 2010). Over the past three decades, childhood obesity rates have tripled and nearly one in three children is overweight or obese. With this large number of children being affected, many will face future health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and asthma. Michelle Obama launched this initiative to help solve the challenge of childhood obesity and help children grow healthier and pursue their dreams (Let’s Move, 2010). The Let’s Move campaign advocates for a decrease in obesity from birth through adulthood. This programs effectiveness comes from putting together a national action plan and focusing on five pillars to be successful. The program gives parents information that teaches them and supports them to ensure a healthy environment. Parents are busier than ever and are given tools and information to instill healthy eating habits in children that will remain a lifetime (Let’s Move, 2010). Nutrition is taught to school children and they have incorporated more physical activity into their day as it is an essential component to health. Physical activity is...
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