Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Proviso Partners for Health

Proviso Partners for Health

Loyola University Hospital System hosted the Proviso Partners for Health (PP4H) summit to bring together community and academic partners to identify policy actions to prevent childhood obesity in Proviso.  We recognize the relationship between place and health and focused our efforts on the environments that affect childhood obesity where children live, learn, and play.

PP4H summit was hosted by Loyola Health Science Division and CHE Trinity Health in partnership with the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children (CLOCC), Cook County Department of Public Health, and United Way of Metropolitan Chicago on Saturday, Oct. 4, 2014.  Lena Hatchett, PhD, Garry Sigman, MD and Amy Luke, PhD represented the SSOM; Armand Andreoni, Susan Finn, MSN, and Jim Whitehead represented CHE Trinity Health; Ann Andreoni, DNP, RN and Joanne Kouba, PhD, RDN and dietetic interns represented the Marcella Neihoff School of Nursing as program planners and facilitators.

Decision-makers from thirty-eight Proviso-area, community agencies, including day care centers, faith-based organizations, schools and a retail food outlet, discussed action plans involving policy changes to prevent childhood obesity.

What is Policy Systems and Environment Change?

Adam Becker, PhD, MPH Executive Director, Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children started the day with examples of effective policies to prevent childhood obesity. Adam introduced examples of community-wide policies like ordinances and small scale actions organizations can make such as wellness policies for employees. Our group took this information as a foundation to discuss what policies can make the healthier choice the easier choice for kids in Proviso.

Why should we care?

Garry Sigman, MD, Medical Director, Loyola Pediatric Weight Management Program continued with an overview of childhood obesity at the state and local level.  In Cook County, the west region has some of highest rates of childhood obesity, approximately 30% of children between kindergarten and 9th grade are obese. Childhood obesity is related to an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, and asthma.


What are we doing now?

Lena Hatchett, PhD, Director of Community and University Partnerships introduced segments from the “Weight of the Nation” video with examples of on-going policy, systems, and environment change that have transformed schools, neighbors, and communities.  In Maywood we have the Loyola Community Food Project which supports community gardens for residents and food pantries. Proviso East High School has a successful Grab and Go lunch program, and the District 89 elementary schools have a school breakfast program.


What more can we do?

Decision-makers from 38 organizations worked in small groups to share their ideas of policy change that can use the capacity in Proviso to prevent childhood obesity.
  • Early Childhood: parent liaison systems in daycare
  • Schools: school-wise healthy fundraising policy
  • Built Environment: community-wide coalition on non-competitive activities
  • Community Food: community-wide rewards for businesses with healthy options


Proviso Partners for Health Summit 11

Loyola will host the second summit on December 6th from 9:00am-1:00pm. Partners will prioritize policies, develop a timeline and action steps for implementation. This initiative is made possible with funding from the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation.

Lena Hatchett, PhD, is the Director of Community and University Partnerships and an Assistant Professor at the Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics, Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. Dr. Hatchett teaches Public Health Ethics and Social Science & Bioethics courses in Loyola's Online Bioethics & Health Policy Graduate Programs.

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