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Archbold Medical Center
As part of an overall effort to enable community individuals to make healthier choices, with the help of community partners, Archbold Medical Center established a program called Live Better. While the goal of the program is to address several health disparities, for its first initiative, the hospital focused on obesity. A community health needs assessment had revealed this area as a significant health disparity.
Archbold’s goal for adults in the community was to decrease the average percentage of morbidly obese adults by 1 percent in one year. One way Archbold assisted in this effort was to improve its current weight loss competition, Team Lean. Many contestants would successfully lose weight during the contest only to put it back on after the contest had ended. Through a partnership with the local YMCA, the hospital extended Team Lean with the creation of Team Live Better, which is a three-month program for Team Lean participants to continue their weight loss journey. Partners also include local restaurants, which offer Live Better-themed food selections that meet specific nutritional guidelines.
To address childhood obesity, the goal was to increase by 3 percent the number of elementary school students whose levels of fitness fall into the Healthy Fitness Zone. This is a set of established fitness standards that offer protection against diseases resulting from sedentary living. Archbold also used the United States Department of Agriculture’s My Plate (ChooseMyPlate.gov), an initiative established in 2011 that redefined the traditional food pyramid as a nutrition guide, transforming the pyramid concept of food groups to updated food categories represented visually on a plate. The hospital purchased My Plates for every elementary-age student in the county and launched the My Plate education in the schools during lunch periods.
Even in its early stages, Live Better promises to be a successful initiative, showing highly visible evidence of heightened community involvement addressing health care needs and goals.