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UPMC Health Plan Provides Ongoing Support of HEALTHY Armstrong Initiative
Date:5/4/2009

PITTSBURGH, May 4 /PRNewswire/ -- As a key partner committed to improving the health and well-being of the community, UPMC Health Plan is proud to provide ongoing support of the HEALTHY Armstrong initiative in Armstrong County. Last month, HEALTHY Armstrong was recognized for its efforts to raise awareness of improved nutrition and increased activity levels by the Armstrong County Commissioners, who proclaimed April 2009 as "Wellness Month."

UPMC Health Plan presented HEALTHY Armstrong with a $200,000 grant over two years to help cover the costs of the coalition. "We are pleased to provide continued financial support for this important Armstrong County initiative," says UPMC Health Plan President and CEO, Diane P. Holder. "Our involvement with the HEALTHY Armstrong collaborative allows us to address the issue of childhood obesity and reaffirms our commitment to the health and well-being of children and their families in the community."

The UPMC Health Plan grant made it possible for HEALTHY Armstrong to hire a Project Director, Kay Detrick Owen, the former director of ARC Manor in Kittanning, PA. She will work under the direction of the collaborative's Executive Council, which is charged with coordinating the efforts of HEALTHY Armstrong and includes a representative from each key partner organization. Ms. Owen will work with the Executive Council to implement programs and activities in the community.

Devin Lorigan, an Armstrong School District physical education teacher, was hired as the HEALTHY Armstrong school program coordinator. Ms. Lorigan will work with in-school coordinators to develop and coordinate nutrition and fitness activities. Together, these two key members of the HEALTHY Armstrong coalition will continue the efforts of the collaborative and further increase its awareness and impact in the community.

"The addition of Kay and Devin to the HEALTHY Armstrong collaborative to help coordinate its efforts is a key milestone for us," says Dr. Harold Altman, a pediatrician, Chief Medical Officer of ACMH Hospital, and a member of the HEALTHY Armstrong's Executive Council. "The financial support provided by UPMC Health Plan will help the coalition become self-sustaining in the years to come."

HEALTHY Armstrong recently launched its own website, www.healthyarmstrong.com. This website provides a wealth of information, including a program overview, event calendar, school activity details, current and upcoming initiatives, and other important resources.

Through the collective efforts of the partner organizations, Armstrong County was named the first We Can! County in the nation in September 2007. For more information, visit www.healthyarmstrong.com.

About UPMC Health Plan

UPMC Health Plan, the second-largest health insurer in western Pennsylvania, is owned by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), one of the nation's top-ranked health systems. The integrated partner companies of the UPMC Insurance Services Division -- which includes UPMC Health Plan, UPMC Work Partners, LifeSolutions (EAP), UPMC for You (Medical Assistance), and Community Care Behavioral Health -- offer a full range of group health insurance, Medicare, Special Needs, CHIP, Medical Assistance, behavioral health, employee assistance, and workers' compensation products and services to nearly 1.3 million members. Our local provider network includes UPMC as well as community providers, totaling more than 80 hospitals and more than 7,600 physicians in a 29-county region. For more information, visit www.upmchealthplan.com.

About HEALTHY Armstrong

An Armstrong County collaborative, HEALTHY Armstrong's goal is to improve the health of families and to help children maintain a healthy weight through improved nutrition and increased physical activity. HEALTHY stands for Healthy Eating and Active Lifestyles Together Helping Youth. Other key partner organizations for this important collaborative include Armstrong School District, ACMH Hospital, ACMH Foundation, Children's Community Pediatrics-Armstrong, and Armstrong County. HEALTHY Armstrong utilizes the National Institutes of Health We Can! (Ways to Enhance Children's Activity and Nutrition) curriculum, focusing on increasing physical activity, improving food choices, and reducing screen time (TV, video games, etc.).


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SOURCE UPMC Health Plan
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