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Opportunities abound for nonprofit hospitals aiming to address obesity through community benefit
Date:10/31/2013

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 31, 2013 --New research from the Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance sheds light on the challenges and opportunities for nonprofit hospitals to address obesity through community benefit activities. With obesity affecting more than one-third of adults and 17 percent of children in the United States, many communities are facing the challenge of how to address this epidemic. Nonprofit hospitals are uniquely positioned to help through their ongoing efforts to provide community benefit programs. Findings from the Alliance's research team at the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services (SPHHS) include:

  • Lack of Proven Community-Based Programs That Directly Address Obesity in Adults: Obesity is a pressing problem in the United States, but one where effective community-based programs are lacking. While there are many ongoing efforts specific to childhood obesity, few programs are directed toward helping adults who struggle with overweight and obesity. Hospitals have an opportunity to add to the existing evidence-base of effective obesity programs and advance the conversation on effective strategies for reducing obesity.

  • Need to Reduce Stigma: By offering strategic programs to address obesity, hospitals can help to reduce weight-based stigma and advocate for positive and supportive communication between health care providers, patients and community members.

  • Value of Effective Partnerships: Obesity is a complex condition that requires multi-level and multi-sectoral partnerships to unite and align efforts aimed at prevention and treatment. As "conveners of change," hospitals can be the driving force for transformation within their communities.

This new research comes as the nation's more than 2,900 nonprofit hospitals face new requirements under the Affordable Care Act in order to maintain their federal tax-exempt status. These requireme
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Contact: Melissa Warren
mwarren@ccapr.com
202-609-6010
Chandler Chicco Agency
Source:Eurekalert

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