• Context matters: A community-based study of urban minority parents' views on child health.

      Bolar, Cassandra L; Hernandez, Natalie; Akintobi, Tabia Henry; McAllister, Calvin; Ferguson, Aneeqah S; Rollins, Latrice; Wrenn, Glenda; Okafor, Martha; Collins, David; Clem, Thomas; et al. (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      Among children, there are substantial ethno-racial minority disparities across a broad range of health-related behaviors, experiences, and outcomes. Addressing these disparities is important, as childhood and adolescence establish health trajectories that extend throughout life.
    • Gender disparities in weight gain among offenders who are obese upon entering correctional facilities

      Gates, Madison, L.; Webb, Nancy C.; Stone, Rebecca; Ballance, Darra; Yoo, Wonsuk; Institute of Public & Preventive Health, Augusta University (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      Background: Obesity is a significant health issue for offenders, who have a higher prevalence of obesity-related conditions, such as diabetes, compared to non-incarcerated populations. Within incarcerated populations, there are obesity disparities in terms of race, gender, and age, as well as excess weight gain during incarceration. Methods: This longitudinal study was conducted for 2005 – 2010 in collaboration with a Department of Corrections in the east south central region of the United States. From electronic health records of 10,841 offenders, weight, height, and demographic data were extracted. As determined from these data, 2,622 offenders met the inclusion criteria (two or more valid weight and height measurements and length of incarceration > zero). Results: Women offenders who entered corrections as obese had a mean (and standard deviation) body mass index (BMI) of 36.2 (5.3) at baseline; the mean for men was 34.2 (4.4). For women who were obese at baseline, their BMI increased by 1.0 (3.3); for men their BMI decreased by 0.7 (3.1). Gender differences for changes in BMI among the obese population were significant (χ2 = 15.8, p < 0.001). Women and men also differed in regard to weight gain (χ2 = 34.0, p < 0.001). Further, those women and men who were not obese at baseline had an increase in BMI that was greater than the increase for the group that entered corrections as obese (p > 0.001). Conclusions: Women offenders, obese or not at baseline, had greater gains in weight in comparison to men. However, there were no significant differences in BMI changes for race or correlations with age or length of incarceration. The findings related to gender warrant further investigations to explain these disparities and to evaluate the capacity of the corrections system to meet the health needs of women.
    • Adapting a physical activity intervention for youth in a rural area: A case study

      Alfonso, Moya L.; Golquitt, Gavin; Walker, Ashley; Gupta, Akrati; Department of Community Health Behavior and Education, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University, School of Health and Kinesiology, College of Health and Human Sciences, Georgia Southern University (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      Background: Physical activity offers children and youth many well-documented positive effects on health. The present study adapted a community-based prevention marketing campaign (CBPM), VERBTM Summer Scorecard (VSS) to promote physical activity among minority youth in rural, southeast Georgia. The purpose of this paper is to describe the adaptation process, emphasizing methods used and lessons learned. Methods: A qualitative study design was used to identify social marketing concepts that informed program adaptation, including two focus groups with 12 children and two focus groups with 14 parents. Qualitative thematic data analysis was used to analyze formative research. The adapted program was implemented for three summers, from 2012 through 2014. A case study of program implementation and lessons learned is provided. Results: Formative research results suggested two changes to VSS that would be required for the program to work in this rural community - a focus on parent-child activities instead of a sole focus on youth and changes to the Scorecard that was used to track physical activity. Over the course of three years of implementation, several lessons were learned about university community partnerships (e.g., the need for a balance of power), having a program champion, and program evaluation. Conclusions: Rural communities are a unique context, with barriers to health promotion efforts that serve to contribute to negative health behaviors and resistance to change. The limited capacity of rural communities to address physical activity makes these barriers difficult to overcome, even during implementation of evidence-based practices.
    • A review of community-based participatory research studies to promote physical activity among African Americans.

      Coughlin, Steven S; Smith, Selina A; Department of Community Health and Sustainability, Division of Public Health, University of Massachusetts, Department of Epidemiology, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Institute of Public and Preventive Health, Augusta University (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      As part of the planning process for new research, the literature on community-based participatory research (CBPR) approaches for promoting physical activity in African American communities was systematically reviewed.
    • The need for culturally-tailored smartphone applications for weight control.

      Coughlin, Steven S.; Hardy, Dale; Caplan, Lee S.; Coughlin, S. S., Hardy, D. Caplan, L. S. (2016). Department of Community Health and Sustainability, Division of Public Health, University of Massachusetts, Department of Epidemiology, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, College of Allied Health Sciences, Augusta University, Department of Community Health and Preventive Medicine, Morehouse School of Medicine (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      Approximately 35% of U.S. adults are obese, and this rate is expected to increase by almost 50% by 2030. New media such as smartphone applications (apps) provide a useful and low-cost way to disseminate weight control information. For many culturally distinctive population subgroups, however, there is currently an absence of research-tested smartphone apps for weight control.
    • Addressing childhood obesity in Georgia: Past, present, and future

      Kibbe, Debra L.; Vall, Emily Anne; Green, Christine; Fitzgerald, Brenda F.; Minyard, Karen J.; Cornett, Kelly; Georgia Health Policy Center, Georgia State University, Georgia Department of Public Health (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      Background: The Trust for America's Health ranks Georgia 17th (16.5%) in the nation for childhood obesity prevalence among youth aged 10-17 years. Georgia has a long history of addressing childhood obesity at the state, regional, and local levels. This report outlines the historical efforts in childhood obesity in Georgia from the mid-1990’s to the present, summarizes current childhood obesity prevention and management strategies, and provides childhood obesity-related data relevant to the current strategies. Methods: Childhood obesity-related efforts in Georgia from 1996 to the present are documented, along with how these efforts led to the creation of Georgia Shape. The Georgia Shape Childhood Obesity Prevention Initiative, created by Governor Nathan Deal in 2012, established a statewide, 10-year plan of action to address childhood obesity. It convenes more than 125 governmental, philanthropic, academic and business community partners quarterly to work towards reducing the incidence of childhood obesity and overweight in Georgia. Evidence supporting the Georgia Shape objectives is described, along with current program and policy efforts that may allow achievement of its goal of having 69% of Georgia’s children in a healthy weight range by the year 2023. Results: Georgia's obesity rate for low-income, 2- to 4-year old children has decreased. Over the 2013-2015 school years, there has been no increase in BMI at the population level among school age children and youth, and the percentage of boys and girls with increased aerobic capacity has improved. Future efforts should focus on middle and high school students; engaging and educating parents of young children; and state policies that support safe, daily physical activity and access to healthy, local food. Conclusions: A long history of childhood obesity activities in Georgia has led to a strategic plan of action, with contributions from many stakeholders. These efforts aim to reduce the prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity in Georgia over 10 years
    • Winning the obesity battle

      Blumenthal, Daniel S.; American College of Preventive Medicine, Department of Community Health & Preventive Medicine, Morehouse School of Medicine (Georgia Public Health Association, 2016)
      There is no doubt that the United States, and especially Georgia, suffers from an obesity problem. Over a third of U.S. adults are obese (CDC, 2016a), as are about 18% of children and 21% of adolescents (CDC, 2016b). Similar percentages in each category are overweight, with a body mass index (BMI) greater than is considered healthy, but not great enough to fall into the obese category. [INTRODUCTION]