Obesity rates have steadily increased over the past two decades. To address the epidemic in women, the Health Resources and Services Administration's Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Division of Healthy Start and Perinatal Services (HRSA/MCHB/DHSPS) awarded 14 demonstration grants to community health centers, health departments, universities and community-based organizations in 12 states to develop innovative approaches aimed at reducing the prevalence of overweight and obesity, specifically in women of childbearing age. Grantees implemented modified or existing evidence-based programs (EBP) or promising practices tailored to the geographic locations, cultures and traditional values of the communities. A review of the 15 programs implemented from 2004 to 2007 was conducted using the methodology outlined in the Transparent Reporting of Evaluations with Nonrandomized Designs Statement to identify indicators of successful program implementation. The six indicators identified were: (1) supportive organizational culture with adequate resources and appropriate staff; (2) attention to the needs of the service population; (3) a referral system that links participants to appropriate services; (4) flexible schedules; (5) support for child care and transportation; and (6) formal and informal support systems to keep participants engaged and motivated.
August 4, 2014