Recent Links and Articles on Health: Nutrition, Access to Care, and Challenges to Overcome

PROVIDENCE, RI – Below are some links for those of you interested in the topics of Childhood Obesity, Access to Nutrition, Access to Affordable Care, and Overcoming Health Disparities. They include short-form press releases, podcasts with Public Service Announcements, videos explaining local initiatives, and long-form studies especially posted for those that do Health Policy work. The sources and references for these links come from a variety of places, including (but not limited to) the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), RI Kids Count, and right here on We know there is a lot, so we leave you with these parting words (and requests): Take A Peek; Take Your Time; and Take A Minute – to leave a comment with your own links, resources or articles.

Recent Links on Childhood Obesity & Nutrition

Heavier and wider kids
From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
HHS HealthBeat

A study says more American kids have been growing overweight – and, the study, which looked at different generations of kids, finds overweight kids have been growing even fatter. (…) The increase in waist size especially could cause more health problems.

Keep Reading
Download/listen to a Short Podcast:


School Environment Affects Diabetes Risk
(And School-based Obesity Intervention Works)
From the National Institutes of Health

Healthier foods at school, longer and more intense physical activity and lessons in healthy lifestyles can reduce obesity and other risk factors for diabetes. These findings, from an NIH-funded study, suggest that school-based changes might help at-risk kids improve their health. (…) At the end of the study, kids who had been overweight or obese at the intervention schools had a 21% lower obesity rate than those at the comparison schools. Other diabetes risk factors, like larger waist size, also fell more at the intervention schools.

Keep Reading


Providence Healthy Corner Store Initiative (PHCSI)
Learn More, Review Recent Work

The Providence Healthy Corner Store Initiative is a community campaign to add healthy options and variety to the food available at small markets in the city. By working with store owners and local farms, the PHCSI wants to make it easier for all families to find and cook healthy food. Choosing more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains is a great way to take care of your body and reduce your risk of obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related illnesses.

About PHCSI – The Video
Providence en Espanol Covers PHCSI
NBC/Turn to 10 Covers PHCSI


Carrots or Candy in Corner Stores?
Federal Facilitators and Barriers to Stocking Healthier Options
Listed in the CDC Public Health Law News

Sheila Fleischhacker and Joel Gittelsohn have written the article “Carrots or Candy in Corner Stores?: Federal Facilitators and Barriers to Stocking Healthier Options” in the Indiana Health Law Review. The article examines federal legal facilitators and barriers to stocking healthier options in the food environment, with particular emphasis on how healthy foods get to smaller grocery stores or “corner stores” in predominantly low-income areas.

Click here to download/read the 34-page article.


Notables from the Farm Fresh RI Newsletter and Blog
Farm Fresh Rhode Island is a 501c3 non-profit organization founded in 2004.

1) The vision of Farm Fresh RI A New England abundant with diverse family farms and fertile soils, with locally and honestly produced foods and flavors at the heart of every dinnertable.  One of their objectives is to “Increase access to fresher, tastier food.”  In that regard, they recently listed several “Benefits at Farmers Markets (in RI)”

  • SNAP, formerly Food Stamps. Just bring your EBT card to the welcome desk at a participating farmers market. All Farm Fresh markets also provide up to $5 free each day you use your EBT card to shop at the market. Many of our markets have SNAP personnel on site who can help you determine if you are eligible and fill out the application.
  • WIC Farmers Market Checks and Fruit and Vegetable Checks can be used at RI farmers markets. Just give the check directly to the farmer at the market. WIC info is here.
  • Senior Coupons: low-income seniors (60+) are eligible for $15 worth of checks to spend at local farmers markets. Call a senior center for more info


2) The Market Mobile brings food directly from producer to plate. Here’s how Market Mobile works:  Every week, Farm Fresh works with local producers to list food for sale online. Producers log onto the Market Mobile site and enter what foods are available this particular week, the quantity available, and the price per unit. On Thursdays, Farmers arrive at a delivery hub and drop off orders in each customer’s box. One delivery truck goes out with all of the orders. For more info please contact Hannah at (401) 312-4250 or by email at


Tackling Obesity in RI
Urban Health Watch Radio, Episode 3

On Episode 3 of Urban Health Watch Radio, we spoke to a roundtable of health advocates and experts on the topic of obesity, taking a special look at rates and trends in RI, and how to turn things around individually and through community involvement. We talked about ways to make changes at work with you and your colleagues, at doctors’ offices and health centers between physicians and parents, and at home with your family with tips on how to access nutritious, healthy, and affordable fresh foods. We also discussed programs, policies, and strategies for outreach specifically targeting children and youth.  Guests from Episode 3 will help you understand how to take action, from where we live, work, and/or play.

Click here to listen to the podcast ANYTIME from your computer.

Learn About Urban Health Watch Radio


Links About Access to Care

Clinica Esperanza – Hope Clinic: Free Health Clinic in Providence

Clinica Esperanza- Hope Clinic
60 Valley Street Unit 5 “The Plant”
Providence, RI 02909

NO HEALTH INSURANCE? Check out a FREE Health Clinic Happening in Providence Every Tuesday and Friday, 5:00 to 8:00 PM. Clinica Esperanza- Hope Clinic Hope Clinic offers free preventive health screenings and doctor exams in a friendly and confidential environment. The clinic is open to adults who live in Rhode Island and have no health insurance. An appointment is needed. Find more info online at or by phone: (401) 347-9093 or (401) 649-9683.

NO TIENES SEGURO MEDICO? Ven para servicios, GRATIS, en una Clinica de Salud que ocurre cada Martes y Viernes, 5:00 – 8:00 PM. Clinica-Esperanza es una clinica de salud gratuita que ofrece varios examenes preventivos y consultas medicas en un ambiente amigable y confidencial. La clinica atendera adultos que viven en Rhode Island sin seguro médico. Es necesario hacer una cita. Encontraras mas informacion si vesitenos en o por telefono: (401) 347-9093 or (401) 649-9683.


RI Kids Count Reports Fewer Insured Children in RI
From the RI Kids Count Newsletter and Website
September 16, 2010

“’The economic downturn of 2008 and 2009 resulted in the loss of jobs, and with that the loss of employer sponsored health coverage. We are seeing these effects in the children’s health insurance coverage numbers released today,’” stated Elizabeth Burke Bryant, Executive Director of Rhode Island KIDS COUNT.”

Providence, RI – Rhode Island KIDS COUNT released new data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2009 Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS reports that 7.7% of Rhode Island children were uninsured in the three-year period from 2007-2009, an increase from 6.4% in the three years from 2004-2006, the period just before the economic downturn. (…) Rhode Island now ranks 19th in the nation for children’s health insurance coverage, down from 13th in 2004-2006. (…) Children with health insurance are more likely to receive treatment for health conditions such as asthma and ear infections, that if left untreated can have life-long consequences and lead to more serious and costly health problems. Uninsured children and adults are more likely to have costly hospitalizations and emergency room visits that could have been prevented with access to regular health care.

Keep Reading/Download the Press Release

More from RI Kids Count


Affordable Care and Access for All Rhode Islanders
Urban Health Watch Radio, Episode 1

On Episode One, we speak to a roundtable of health advocates and experts about issues of affordable health care and access for all Rhode Islanders. We’ll talk about the opportunities available to entrepreneurs and self-employed workers and to families and residents who are uninsured, under insured or earning lower incomes. We’ll also talk about services that hospitals and health centers offer by choice and the ones they’re now required to offer by law. Episode one’s experts will help us understand why insurance or access to regular care is important to children and families and they’ll review policy changes and updates to make sure everyone is informed about all their health insurance and access options.

Click here to download/listen to a podcast ANYTIME from your computer.

Find All Three Episodes of Urban Health Watch Radio


Other Links

Why The Poor Pay Virtually No Attention to Those ‘Quit Smoking’ Campaigns
By Carolyn Thomas

A fascinating study in the UK sheds some light on that question by observing that the poorer you are, the more likely you’ll be to take up smoking, and the less likely you’ll also be to quit smoking. It helps to explain the spectacular lack of success that otherwise effective anti-smoking campaigns have among lower socioeconomic populations. (…) [R]esearchers conclude that disadvantaged populations will continue to resist health promotion measures like ‘quit smoking’ campaigns until their more urgent short-term problems are successfully addressed. (…) Poor housing conditions, occupational hazards, and environmental dangers are more immediate threats to the health of those in lower socioeconomic positions than is smoking.

Blog/Article Link:

Original Study Link:


Improving Your Health Literacy
from “Navigating the Health Care System: Advice Columns from Dr. Carolyn Clancy”

In this article, found on the webpage of the Agency for Health Research and Quality, Dr. Carolyn Clancy gives great tips on how to improve interactions with pharmacists. October, she says, is “Health Literacy Month,” which is “a good time to try these suggestions,” writes Clancy, who writes an advice column called “Navigating the Health Care System.” Here are some excerpts from some of her suggestions:

  • Have another adult with you.
  • Bring all your medicines to your next doctor’s visit.
  • Ask questions. Then, make sure you get and understand the answers.
  • Repeat information back to your doctor or nurse. After your doctor or nurse gives you directions, repeat those instructions in your own words.
  • Let the doctor’s office know you need an interpreter if you don’t speak or understand English very well. You have a right to an interpreter, at no cost to you.

Read more


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