The identified Healthy People 2020 topic area is that of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. This field examines the major health issues affecting members of the population and how individuals can improve their conditions. The specific health issue for this analysis is that of obesity. Medical practitioners take the issue seriously because it remains one of the leading risks for various diseases, including stroke, diabetes, heart diseases, cancer, and even increased blood pressure. This discussion presents a communication plan that can help address some of the causes of obesity disparities.
Causes of Disparities
Objective NWS-9 is intended to track the number of adults who are affected by obesity. The Healthy People 2020 reveals that this condition affects various populations differently. For instance, the website indicates that non-Hispanic Asians recorded the lowest rate of this condition at 12.5 percent (Healthy People, 2020). The most affected racial group was that of African American at around 48 percent. For Hispanics, the rate or percent of obesity among individuals above the age of 20 was around 44.9 (Healthy People, 2020). The rate for non-Hispanic Caucasian was around 37 percent (Healthy People, 2020). These statistics reveal that the country continues to face the challenge of obesity. However, some population groups appear to be more affected than others.
The nature of these disparities could be attributable to a number of aspects. For instance, African American lack adequate resources and information that could help them address the health challenge. Consequently, more individuals belonging to the population continue to be affected the most. Non-Hispanic whites, on the other hand, have access to adequate information, have proper medical cover, and have recorded meaningful social mobilities. These attributes could explain why a reduced percentage of whites are affected by obesity (Berge et al., 2018). Additionally, members of the Latino population encounter more or less the same challenges in comparison with African Americans. Such individuals will, therefore, have higher chances of becoming obese. Some of the common issues these members of the identified populations face include lack of timely nutritional information, absence of resources, and reduced physical activity.
Public Health Communication Strategy
The identification of obesity as one of the Healthy People 2020 issues means that it is a leading medical problem in the United States. The condition is associated with additional health problems and increased burden in medical care delivery. The ultimate aim for any intervention or agenda should be to improve the health outcomes of the anticipated beneficiaries. A proper communication plan is, therefore, needed to help more Latinos and African Americans overcome this burden and eventually record desirable medical outcomes (Ward et al., 2019). Whites will also be targeted to learn more about obesity and be involved in communal and personal activities that can help deal with this health problem.
The public health communication plan needs to be simple and practical. The involved professionals should begin by identifying members of the worst affected population groups. They will also identify some of the best avenues and partners who can collaborate to ensure that the plan is successful. Before launching the communication project, the experts will have to craft the most appropriate content that can support the delivery of the intended goals (Ward et al., 2019). To ensure that sustainable outcomes are recorded. The stakeholders in public health will begin by crafting the relevant messages that trigger behavioral change at the wider community level. They can consider various approaches that can deliver the intended outcomes, such as pamphlets, websites of various community organizations, medical facilities, and social media platforms.
The designed communication approach should focus on a number of key attributes that can help minimize the level of disparity. For instance, the content should include some of the best ways to measure one’s body weight, such as the body mass index (BMI) index. The professionals can also offer guidelines for having healthy diets and managing calorie intakes. The involvement of social workers and community organizations will ensure that the communication plan targets more people in the selected region (Healthy People, 2020). The communication plan can also include some of the best guidelines for engaging in exercises as an evidence-based approach for managing one’s weight.
Communication Plan Outline
The intended communication plan will have specific areas. These aspects will guide the professionals to make timely decisions and focus on the demands of the specific beneficiaries. The outline for the plan will include:
- Goals and objectives
- Routine communication
- Intended message
- Budget communication
- Evaluation process
After implementing the communication plan, the relevant leaders in the community will need to monitor the recess and gather timely insights to guide the nature of decisions made. Experts in healthcare can rely on the acquired information to identify areas of weakness and propose proper measures to improve the initiative (Ward et al., 2019). Individuals can also be encouraged to provide their inputs and ideas that can help those involved to improve the process continuously. The successful implementation of this initiative will eventually deliver meaningful results and reduce the recorded disparities in health.
Targeted Communication Plan
Although disparities are evident in the number of people with obesity and the causal factors, the proposed plan needs to be designed in such a way that it meets the demands of all members of population. This means that the plan identified above will be used. However, slight modifications will be considered when meeting the demands of various diverse populations. For instance, African Americans will get additional ideas regarding the use of traditional approaches to manage obesity. Similarly, Latinos will get additional information regarding the connection between diet and obesity (Byrd et al., 2018). The targeted whites will be informed about the use of surgical procedures and medical therapy in advanced obesity. Additionally, the inclusion of simple phrases and terms will ensure that the content is appropriate for African Americans and Latinos.
The specific plan is presented below.
- Communication Objectives: The objectives of this plan include sensitizing members of the community about obesity, encouraging them to measure their BMIs, and guiding them to engage in proper initiatives to deal with the condition.
- Routine Communication: Medical professionals and public health workers will be involved to provide the targeted information to different community members. Inputs and insights from members of the public will be relayed back to the project manager.
- Messages: Communication messages will include definition of obesity, measuring BMI, diet and nutrition, exercises, and possible medication.
- Budget Communication: Project manager will communicate with members and inform them about budgetary requirements for the plan.
- Evaluation: Key professionals will monitor the project and report directly to the manager.
- Key Avenues/Platforms: Communication to community members will be through pamphlets, social media platforms, and organizational websites. Educational campaigns will also be completed.
- Closing Remarks: Ideas gained will be replicated to make the plan a continuous process to help mitigate the challenges of obesity.
Concluding Remarks and Reflection
From this project, I have learned that obesity is a major health concern affecting many Americans. The use of proper interventions and communication plans can help transform people’s health outcomes. The involvement of more professionals and partners in the wider health sector can help deliver meaningful results. The identified plan is, therefore, appropriate for helping more people to deal with various medical conditions.
Berge, J. M., Fertig, A., Tate, A., Trofholz, A., & Neumark-Sztainer, D. (2018). Who is meeting the Healthy People 2020 objectives?: Comparisons between racially/ethnically diverse and immigrant children and adults. Family, Systems, & Health, 36(4), 451-470. Web.
Byrd, A. S., Toth, A. T., & Stanford, F. C. (2018). Racial disparities in obesity treatment. Current Obesity Reports, 7(2), 130-138. Web.
Healthy People. (2020). Nutrition, physical activity, and obesity. Web.
Ward, Z. J., Bleich, S. N., Cradock, A. L., Barrett, J. L., Giles, C. M., Flax, C., Long, M. W., & Gortmaker, S. L. (2019). Projected U.S. state-level prevalence of adult obesity and severe obesity. The New England Journal of Medicine, 381(25), 2440-2450. Web.