142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

Selección Sana, Vida Saludable (Healthy Choices, Healthy Life): A culturally appropriate Nutrition and Physical Activity Program using Community Health Workers as Agents of Change in underserved Latino Communities

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Alejandra J. Gepp, MA , Institute for Hispanic Health, National Council of La Raza, Washington, DC
Gino Galvez, Ph.D. , NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation and Leadership Training, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, CA
Britt Rios-Ellis, PhD , NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation & Leadership Training, Long Beach, CA
Melawhy Garcia , CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Long Beach, CA
Research is needed to develop education initiatives that reach Latino populations and present information in an understandable and practical form.  Selección Sana, Vida Saludable used the promotores de salud (community health workers) model to help low-income Latinos with limited English proficiency to navigate their communities in search of resources for healthy eating and physicl activity. 

Promotores in nine communities were trained to conduct environmental scans to assess the strengths and needs of their community, conducted educational outreach, and served as a link between the community and other resources. 

A total of 787 Latino community members participated in the charlas (educational sessions). Participants completed self-report surveys that assessed levels of health knowledge and fitness at three time points (i.e., pre-charla, post-charla, and 3-month follow-up). A repeated measures ANOVA was conducted to examine knowledge scores across time. Among those that had data at each time point (N = 379), the pre-knowledge score mean was 4.6 (SD = 1.9), post-knowledge score mean was 5.8 (SD = 2.2), and the follow-up knowledge score mean was 7.1 (SD = 2.0). Seleccion Sana, Vida Saludable had a statistically significant effect on knowledge levels across time, F(1.857, 702.101) = 195.903, p< .001.

The project has important public health implications and serves as a model to address health disparities among Latinos in the U.S.  Interventions that address obesity among Latinos will not only need to address the biological causes of obesity, but also the cultural and contextual implications that influence poor eating and physical activity behaviors.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the need for culturally and linguistically appropriate community-based health education programs for Latinos to reduce risk factors associated with chronic diseases Describe the use and application of the lay health workers model in diverse settings Discuss the importance of providing community-specific nutrition and physical activity information and resources to Latinos

Keyword(s): Community-Based Research (CBPR), Obesity

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Ms. Gepp is a seasoned professional with emonstrated accomplishment in direct service delivery and program management (social campaigns and public health initiatives; including project coordination, training, and curriculum development). Ms. Gepp has a proven track record in creating and maintaining strategic alliances in working toward mutual goals with diverse groups of professionals and underserved communities.
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.