Improving Health Status of Students in Less Developed Areas in China-An Nutrition Education-based Intervention Program
APPROACH: Interventions included lectures on nutrition and distribution of locally appropriate educational materials on nutrition. School cafeteria staff were trained to prepare nutritionally complete meals and provided with a government subsidy of 3 Chinese yuan per day per student to purchase food. A program evaluation was conducted to compare health outcomes with baseline data.
RESULTS: Preliminary data showed improvement in dietary habits scores (14.4±3.1before vs 16.9±3.7after), nutritional knowledge scores (8.3±4.1 vs 17.8±5.8) and attitude scores (11.0±5.1 vs 17.7±4.7) (all p<0.05, the three scores were evaluated by students and parents on questionnaires). The wasting rate (Weight for height-WHZ) was reduced significantly from 9.1% to 5.6% (p<0.05) compared with baseline while anemia rates had no significant change after intervention.
DISCUSSION: Nourishment during school hours is critical. The program seeks to establish evidence-based approaches and to provide interventions in order to supply reference data for the newly initiated policy to improve rural area students’ nutrition and health status. Government financial policy on dietary improvement will be more impactful to combine with educational interventions.
Learning Areas:Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Chronic disease management and prevention
Public health or related education
Public health or related research
Evaluate the impact of an education-based nutrition program combined with government policy
Keyword(s): Nutrition, Policy/Policy Development
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I'm the program manager of several public health programs in China and have been trained as a pediatric nutritionist in medical university.
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.