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Blue Cross Tackles Childhood Obesity With Pediatric Healthy Weight Toolkit

Armen Hareyan's picture

An innovative pediatric healthy weight toolkit will help Michigan doctors tackle one of the state's new and preventable epidemics: childhood obesity, part of an ongoing comprehensive effort by the Blues to improve the health of Michigan children.

The kit was designed in consultation with eight Michigan physicians who are active in battling childhood obesity.

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"Obese children have greatly increased risk for hypertension, high blood cholesterol, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, arthritis and other chronic conditions," explained Tom Peterson, M.D., medical director of quality at Helen DeVos Children's Hospital as well as medical director of Spectrum Health Healthier Communities in Grand Rapids, and one of the toolkit's authors. "Two of the biggest killers in America -- tobacco and obesity -- are almost completely preventable."

"This is a tool created by physicians for use by physicians," noted Peterson. "As far as we know, the toolkit is the only one of its kind in Michigan. It is extremely user friendly for providers."

Produced by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, the toolkit will be available Dec. 1 to pediatricians and other specialists who see thousands