Making the Healthy Choice the Easy Choice

Community What's Happening

LiveWell Greenville: At the Doctor

Issue:  In 2010, LiveWell Greenville invited pediatric providers to a roundtable discussion focused on improving the prevention and treatment of obesity in pediatric offices. The group learned that in many cases physician offices lacked useful, attractive materials to facilitate discussion. In addition, many offices did not have a cohesive approach among provides when addressing these issues.  Providers were also interested in referral sources for helping their patients lead healthier lives.

Intervention:  Thanks to a grant from Eat Smart, Move More of South Carolina, LiveWell Greenville, the local Eat Smart Move More Coalition, was able to provide a brief educational review session for each office and develop a useful toolkit to facilitate conversations between pediatricians and their patients.   Training included a review BMI screening standards and the use of motivational interviewing to facilitate patient behavior change.  The toolkit materials included information on limiting screen time and sugary drinks, eating more fruits and vegetables and becoming more physically active. Also included is a prescription for healthy living that refers directly to the materials.

The toolkit also uses the same terminology used by both the LiveWell Greenville after-school providers and the Greenville County Schools (the CATCH Curriculum: Coordinated Approach to Child Health), so children are hearing the same messages in different settings.

In addition, pediatric providers received the LiveWell Near You maps, which show the closest parks and trails to patients’ homes. Research shows the most effective prescription for active living is one that is paired with a resource to show nearby trails and parks.

Impact:  The feedback from surveys of the pediatric practices has been very positive.  Providers say the toolkit has helped facilitate discussions with patients and it gives offices a unified approach to address this important issue. They report that patients respond well to these materials.  In 2012, LiveWell Greenville will finish bringing the toolkit to every pediatric practice in Greenville County.  In addition, Greenville Hospital System University Medical Center has adopted a policy of integrating motivational interview training into their physician residency program.

LiveWell Greenville has had requests to begin looking at expanding the pediatric toolkit to be used at Family Practice Offices and to develop resources for adults to be utilized at Family Practice, Internal Medicine and Obstetric/Gynecologic practices.