Session: General Session, Oct. 18
Presentation Title: Public Health Core Functions Panel
Presenter: Morgan McDonald, Director, Division of Family Health and Wellness, Tennessee Department of Health
While Tennessee has made progress over the past decade, it still tracks above the national data for youth obesity prevalence as well as physical inactivity among youth.
By leveraging existing partnerships and funding sources, Tennessee has been able to intervene and "champion health" at various critical points across the life course, from breastfeeding to school and childcare environments and throughout adulthood.
McDonald highlighted the Gold Sneaker Initiative, a licensing program that provides child care facilities with a framework to promote physical activity. To receive the accreditation, facilities must be tobacco-free and meet standards for physical activity and nutrition policies.
"It provides 'carrots,' " McDonald said. "It incentivizes activity and nutrition framework for child care centers. It's opened doors in child care centers for other child health priorities, like safe sleep."