Kansas legislators prioritize obesity, but overlook nutrition and physical activity issues

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dc.contributor.author Heinrich, Katie M.
dc.contributor.author Stephen, Mellina O.
dc.contributor.author Vaughan, Katherine B.
dc.contributor.author Kellogg, Melinda
dc.date.accessioned 2013-06-19T20:17:42Z
dc.date.available 2013-06-19T20:17:42Z
dc.date.issued 2013-06-19
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2097/15919
dc.description.abstract State-level policymakers play an important role in the fight against obesity due to their ability to create policies that influence opportunities for physical activity and nutrition. Objective: In 2011, we investigated how Kansas policymakers regarded obesity, nutrition and physical activity in comparison to other issues. Design: This study used a cross-sectional design. Setting: This study was conducted in Kansas, a predominately rural and Republican Midwestern state. Participants: All 181 state-level policymakers in Kansas were mailed a cover letter and survey. Main Outcome Measures: Policymakers were asked to identify and rate the importance of issues or problems in need of attention for Kansas. The 2011 state legislative report was content analyzed and coded to match the survey. Comparisons were made by political party. Results: Of the 49 policymakers who completed a survey, 37 were Republicans and 43 were elected to their position. Although obesity was rated second highest behind jobs, physical activity and nutrition-related issues were not seen as important problems; as well, little corresponding legislation was introduced. Other key issues identified by policymakers included budget/spending/taxes, education, jobs/economy, and drug abuse, with more legislation reflecting these problems. Democrats ranked 11 issues as more significant problems than did Republicans: quality of public education, poverty, access to healthcare, lack of affordable housing, ethics in government, lack of public health training, access to healthy groceries, lack of pedestrian walkways/crosswalks/sidewalks, pedestrian safety, air pollution, and global warming (P < .05). Conclusions: There is a need to provide more public health education on the relationship between nutrition and physical activity issues and obesity for Kansas policymakers. Issues identified may be similar for other predominately rural and Republican states. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.relation.uri http://journals.lww.com/jphmp/Abstract/2013/03000/Kansas_Legislators_Prioritize_Obesity_but_Overlook.6.aspx en_US
dc.rights This is a non-final version of an article published in final form in Journal of Public Health Management & Practice, 19(2), 139-145. en_US
dc.subject Policy en_US
dc.subject Obesity en_US
dc.subject Environment en_US
dc.subject Nutrition policy en_US
dc.subject Motor activity en_US
dc.title Kansas legislators prioritize obesity, but overlook nutrition and physical activity issues en_US
dc.type Article (author version) en_US
dc.date.published 2013 en_US
dc.citation.doi doi:10.1097/PHH.0b013e318254cc57 en_US
dc.citation.epage 145 en_US
dc.citation.issue 2 en_US
dc.citation.jtitle Journal of Public Health Management & Practice en_US
dc.citation.spage 139 en_US
dc.citation.volume 19 en_US
dc.contributor.authoreid kmhphd en_US

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