208003 From mounds of neighborhood food environment data to effectively communicating results to a variety of target audiences

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 5:15 PM

Valerie Quinn, MEd , California Department of Public Health, Network for a Healthy California, Sacramento, CA
Alyssa Ghirardelli, MPH, RD , California Department of Public Health, Network for a Healthy California, Sacramento, CA
Ellen Feighery, RN, MS , Public Health Institute, Oakland, CA
Since 2006, over 80 low-income neighborhoods in California have been assessed by 23 local health departments using Communities of Excellence in Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity Prevention (CX3) tools and methods. CX3 data has documented a multitude of conditions portraying the food environment. Developed by the California Department of Public Health, CX3 is a program planning framework that examines neighborhoods against community-level indicators. Standardized tools and methods measure the indicators using a combination of GIS mapping followed by field surveys. Accessibility to supermarkets and farmers' markets as well as the proximity of fast food outlets to schools and parks are mapped. Survey tools provide in-depth examination into food availability and marketing at neighborhood food stores and at fast food outlets near schools. Walkability audits are conducted and outdoor food advertising around schools is documented. However, the amount of data collected has presented challenges in communicating findings to the various target audiences: neighborhood residents, community coalitions, health leadership, and community leaders. During the last two years, a combination of strategic communications tools and data analyses were developed and tested with the local health departments to increase effectiveness in communicating results. Innovative data analyses and communications approaches help characterize positive and negative overall neighborhood conditions (e.g., food deserts, fast food ratios). In addition, a unique store scoring system automatically calculates individual store scores, which is proving to be particularly effective in working with corner stores. The data analyses and various communications tools will be presented, along with local programs' strategies and results.

Learning Objectives:
1) Describe how to adapt communications tools to meet needs of target audience while retaining key messages. 2) Recognize approaches to advancing community change by ensuring effective communications tools.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Over 15 years experience in cancer control and health promotion programs, including nutrition and physical activity, tobacco control and breast cancer. I spearhead the Communities of Excellence in Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity Prevention initiative for the Network for a Healthy California, California Department of Public Health, working with 23 local health department and a team of researchers, communications and technical assistance specialists. My educational background is Journalism/Communications and a Masters of Education, with special emphasis on social marketing.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.