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Title of Event / Sponsors: State of Obesity: Better Policies for a Healthier America 2020  / Trust for Americaâ€s heath.
Preparation Steps Taken: Reviewed available information via the internet at the American public health association for health  (https://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/apha-calendar/webinar-events/2020/state-of-obesity). Read the biographies for the speakers that were presenting. Gained insight into the Trust for America’s Health through the findings of TFAH’s 2019 State of Obesity report.
Place / Date / Time / Length: Online / Wednesday, January 29, 2020 /2pm – 4pm/2 hours
Topic Under Discussion: National obesity crisis, its health impacts, and how advocates are working at the national and local levels to address the ongoing epidemic.
Names of Participants and Their Titles: Devita Davison, Executive Director, FoodLab Detroit; Martha Halko, MS, RD, LD, Deputy Director of Prevention & Wellness, Cuyahoga County (Ohio) Board of Health; Ruth Petersen, MD, MPH, Director, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention; Moderator: John Auerbach, MBA, President and CEO, Trust for America’s Health
Brief Description of the Testimony / Meeting / Event: Speakers will cover the latest national and state obesity rates and trends, highlight promising approaches localities have undertaken to ensure healthy communities, and offer national policy recommendations that incorporate innovative approaches that prioritize helping all Americans lead healthier lives.
Description and Analysis of the Health Policy Issue and Its Implications for Health Care:
Childhood obesity is considered a major health threat. The W orld H ealth Organization (W HO) has labeled the epidemic of childhood obesity as “globesity” LARERY, T. (2019). The 2019 state of obesity report shows that 1 in 3 Americans of all ages have obesity with a total of 10 million people. And as a result of this epidemic, national healthcare spending is increased by $149 billion annually, about half of which is paid for by Medicare and Medicaid. The rate of obesity in the united states continues to increase while racial, ethnic, income and geographic disparities persist.  There is the part of the report that focused on racial and ethnic disparities and policies. Evidence from data shows that the level of obesity is highest among young African-American and Alaska native populations and factors that affect this rate are social and economic factors. With regards to poor economic situations, a community-based approach can be really helpful too for example in Detroit there is a food lab that is non-profit organization whereby the goal is to build wealth within lower income communities by providing strategic advising and training and try to raise funds for local community members to open up healthy, fresh food businesses providing healthy food.
There are very few affordable and accessible options for health food and physical activity including disproportion of healthy food to these set of people and multiple interventions will be needed to resolve this complex and ever-evolving disease. The fight against obesity and for lifelong health and wellness begins in childhood. The set of people this issue affects most are the children. “Childhood obesity is an extensive and systemic issue that disproportionately affects children in rural areas living in poverty the geography of rural communities makes childhood obesity prevention efforts challenging (Gold et.al 2020).” According to the speaker, one of the reasons why the issue of childhood obesity is prioritized is because not only of that future risk you saw with the adult maps, but also the immediate issues that childhood obesity causes in our young children. Some of the health implication of obesity in children is that they have breathing problems (sleep apnea), musculoskeletal and even joint problems, not to talk of heart disease and high blood pressure. Psychologically, they go through bully, low self-esteem, anxiety and depression.
Treatment for adult obesity costs about 147 billion in annual medical care costs while children with excess age into adulthood and increase those cost that the medical system has to take on. This goes ahead to affect the primary care and specialty care struggling to meet the needs of those families that are struggling with childhood obesity.
Proffered solution to this epidemic is physical activity while there will be opportunities created to access safe places to be physically active in the community. In the greater Cleveland area, data shows that the residents lacked physical activity and higher rates. Another proffered solution to the issue of cost is Medicare for all where healthcare will be affordable to everyone so that people will not be afraid to get help from their doctor.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2014). Childhood obesity Facts.http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/childhood.html
Gold, A. L., Bennett, K., Jansen, R. J., Mobley, A. R., Procter, S. B., Smathers, C., Contreras, D., Peters, P., Keim, A., & Oscarson, R. (2020). Ripple Effects of the Communities Preventing Childhood Obesity Project. Health Promotion Practice, 21(2), 308–318. https://doi.org/10.1177/1524839918788581
LARERY, T. (2019). The True Weight of Childhood Obesity in America. Midwest Quarterly, 60(3), 329–334.

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