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Six cities score grant awards for childhood obesity prevention

BY Ryan Chavis

WASHINGTON — The United States Conference of Mayors announced winners of the 2014 Childhood Obesity Prevention Awards. The grant awards went to cities with outstanding programs that encouraged balanced diet choices and regular physical activity to maintain healthy weight.

The following cities were recognized:

  • Dallas, Texas;
  • Denver, Colo.;
  • Little Rock, Ark.;
  • Monrovia, Calif.;
  • Waterbury, Conn.; and
  • York, Pa.

The grant program is the result of a partnership formed between USCM and the American Beverage Association. It also includes a national public awareness campaign and connects mayors with cost-effective strategies to successfully reduce childhood obesity in their cities.

“Combating childhood obesity has become a top priority for mayors in their cities,” Tom Cochran, CEO and executive director of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, said. “The best available science demonstrates that children with health problems related to overweight and obesity unfortunately not only fall far behind in school, but also can’t compete in the workforce. And that’s why we’re so proud of our partnership with the American Beverage Association, to support the pioneering strategies that mayors and cities are coming up with to eradicate childhood obesity.”

 

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Walgreens partners with family support group Tomorrow’s Child

BY Michael Johnsen

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Family support group Tomorrow’s Child recently partnered with Walgreens stores across Michigan, according to the company. 

Supporters of Tomorrow’s Child can help more babies reach their first birthdays by visiting Walgreens in January and purchasing $1 or $5 "pin-ups" at any of its 230 Michigan stores.

 "Tomorrow’s Child is excited for the new partnership and praises Walgreens for its willingness to educate Michigan citizens about the importance of safe sleep for our babies," said Sarah Scranton, Tomorrow’s Child CEO. "We encourage all of our supporters to visit Walgreens during the month of January. It’s an easy way to support our mission as you make your everyday purchases."

All proceeds will provide safe sleep educational outreach materials and support families affected by infant deaths.

Founded in 1994, Tomorrow’s Child is in its 20th year of supporting parents and families coping with the loss of an infant and working to prevent future infant deaths.

 

 

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Survey: Many social media users with health conditions willing to share health data

BY Antoinette Alexander

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Social media-savvy adults with health conditions would be willing to share their health data online if it helps clinicians improve care, helps other patients or advances medical research, according to a recent survey by PatientsLikeMe, a patient network and real-time research platform.

The results of the survey of 2,125 PatientLikeMe members were released in the discussion paper “Social Networking Sites and the Continuously Learning Health System: A Survey by members of the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) Evidence Communication Innovation Collaborative.” Of those respondents with a medical condition:

  • An overwhelming majority would be willing to share health data if it could help others in some way: 94% would be willing to share to help doctors improve care; 94% would be willing to help other patients like them; and 92% would be willing to share to help researchers learn more about their disease;
  •  Four-out-of-five respondents (84%) would be willing to share their health information with drug companies to help them make safer products, and 78% would do so to let drug companies learn more about their disease; and
  • 94% believe that their health data should be used to improve the care of future patients who may have the same or similar condition.

The results also highlighted concerns that sharing data could carry risk. Some 76% of respondents said they believe that data from their personal health record could potentially be used without their knowledge, 72% to deny them healthcare benefits and 66% to deny them job opportunities.

“It’s exciting to see research that so clearly illuminates the patient voice,” stated Sally Okun, a co-author on the paper and PatientsLikeMe’s VP advocacy, policy and patient safety. “This paper affirms the great value in sharing health data, and signals a new age in medicine where patients and researchers can learn in real-time from the shared experiences of others.”

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