Health

Funding for Obesity Reduction and Diabetes Risk Reduction

Proposal

Past legislation (HB3618) was enacted to establish the school based and public health effort for obesity reduction and diabetes prevention. Disease Self Management (DSM) is also another risk reduction methodology that is being integrated into primary health care. Funding to assist schools and local public health is being requested to enhance this effort and to address the epidemic of obesity and diabetes along the Texas/Mexico Border in particular in Laredo.

Background

The City of Laredo Health Department (CLHD) partnered with the Social and Health Research Center (S&HRC) to implement Proyecto Bienestar Laredo (PBL) school-evidenced based health program. This evidence based proven strategy has dramatic positive results in weight and glucose reduction, healthier eating, increased physical activity and family support. Healthy Living/Viviendo Mejor (HLVM), a DSM chronic disease care model includes all the strategies mentioned above and peer support to better understand one's disease and make healthier choices. Resources are being requested to support: PBL: Expansion to children 0-5 year olds to decrease saturated fats, increase fiber, increase physical activity (PA) and to control body weight through a school cafeteria, after school activity, health screening and a family component (Family Fun Fiesta, Health and Physical Education class, School Food Service and Health Club). PBL has proven health outcomes improvement through wellness and early prevention for medically underserved and vulnerable communities with high-risk children for obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Important findings: 1) children who reduced their blood sugar levels and weight had higher TAKS scores and 2) PBL children made healthier choices and had healthier outcomes. Therefore, this proven strategy should be a supported effort by the TDSHS, Texas Education Agency, Health and Human Service Commission and the Texas Department of Agriculture.

Reqeust For: Nutritionist/Health Educator to provide nutrition, physical activity (PA), healthier choices and health education in the schools. Children learn healthier habits, nutrition value, participate in more PA and with their parents learn about healthier eating and active living.

HLVM: Increase DSM for persons at risk of developing diabetes and/or confirmed to reduce complications and improve health outcomes (reduce kidney, vascular, heart and stroke disease) and prevent hospitalizations especially for short term complication and for preventable health issues. This effort has been integrated intro primary care and is making a difference in healthier lifestyles.   

Reqeust For: Nutritionist/Health Educator to provide DSM integrated into primary care. Will be part of a cross trained multi-faceted team with a nurse and case manager to monitor the patients and reduce risks of chronic disease (diabetes) through case management, active participation in nutritional guidance, healthier cooking, PA (Zumba) and peer support understanding and management of disease education.

Contact

Dr. Hector F. Gonzalez
Health Department Director
2600 Cedar Avenue
Laredo, TX 78040
Phone: (956) 795-4901
Fax: (956) 726-2632
Email: hgonzalez@ci.laredo.tx.us