Online Program

Childhood obesity in rural Georgia: Efficacy of a patient-centered community-based community-led intervention

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Simone M. Charles, PhD, MS, Environmental Health Sciences, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA
Childhood obesity is a significant public health issue, particularly among rural, underserved children. Obesity is linked to over-eating, emotional eating, high intake of energy-rich foods, low fiber diets, intake of high sugar beverages, and lack of exercise. Nutrition and exercise interventions that are patient-centered, culturally tailored that overcome structural and access challenges in rural communities are sorely needed. The intent of the program was to motivate participants to reduce obesity behavioral risk factors within their homes. The program was facilitated collaboratively by pediatricians, public health practitioners, middle school nurses, and university students. Parents and children participated in an obesity camp - REACH. Concurrent child and parent sessions were conducted: stress management; health literacy on obesity, nutrition labels, active living; goal setting; cooking healthy and cheap (<$0/day) [for children this session was healthy snack preparation]; lite exercise. Children and parents had a joint session on weekly goal setting. Participants were followed for 3 months with follow-up emails, texts and calls. In month 1, assistance for goal setting was conducted weekly; thereafter monthly. Child and parent evaluations included child and parent obesity knowledge, goal accomplishment, quality of life, waist circumference, self-perception, changes in food choices, and BMI. Child measurements were taken at month 0, 1, 2, 3 and 6 by the school nurse or pediatrician. Parents were measured at months 0, 3 and 6. Home assessments were conducted to determine the type of food present at months 0, 3 and 6. Process evaluations of the functioning of the patient-centered care team were also conducted. This study is currently underway. Results will be available in August. We conclude that children and parents will reflect greater self-efficacy, academic achievement, quality of life, and increased active living and healthy food choices despite available options over time. This program will facilitate family-based active living

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Environmental health sciences
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the efficacy of ecological, comprehensive interventions around weight management and health in children in rural communities Assess the effectiveness of collaborative programs with all partners of child’s network to promote child’s health

Keyword(s): Obesity, Children's Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have conducted research in children's health for several years and qualified to present on this topic.
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.