Nursing Homework Paper on Pediatric Obesity Intervention

Pediatric Obesity Intervention

Childhood obesity statistics in the United States over the past 30 years are alarming; reports show that obesity currently affects more than one child in every six US children (Canterbury et al, 2013). The situation is no different in our operating environment where the majority of the pediatric population exemplifies obese and overweight symptoms. With general trends indicating that more than one third of overweight or obese children are likely to develop obesity later in adulthood (Serpas et al, 2013), the current state of our pediatric population is an issue of concern.

Current State of Practice

Current clinical measures of overweight and obesity prevention in the pediatric population are heavily deprived and wanting. A review of the current childhood overweight and obesity program reveals a number of deficiencies;

  • There is little effort by health care providers to obtain pediatric patient’s weight and height measurements. These measurements are overlooked as physicians mostly rely on clinical impressions to determine overweight and obesity while offering little educational instruction.
  • Clinical measures such as BMI (Body Mass Index) are not obtained with the pediatric population on a consistent basis
  • The number of overweight pediatric patients referred to the nutritionist is significantly low
  • There is limited information on healthy eating habits and the available information is often provided in a haphazard manner 
  • With under per referrals to the nutritionist, the productivity of the department levelled against the cost running it shows a negative correlation

 Proposed Change

To intervene the current problem, this paper proposes the adoption of a community-based approach to convey a message consistent and complementary to the nationally disseminated 5-2-1-0 lets go message, that encompasseson a daily basis (Rodgers et al, 2009);

* 5 fruits and vegetables

* 2 hours of screen time or less

* 1 hour of physical activity

* 0 sugary drinks

This strategy involves revolutionizing the pediatric departments by implementing the following


*Placing 5210 health education materials, posters, and prescription pads in all exam rooms

*Creation of laminated BMI % color charts for visual aid to discuss BMI with families.

* Training medical assistants to document the BMI % during well child exams

* Development of prescription pads for families with 5210 healthy weight plans

*Creation of an open gym to provide children and adolescents with alternative weekend physical activities

Implementation of the proposed program changes will incur costs and financial commitments in the form of;

  • Staff training
  • Development of a modern gym with qualified trainers
  • Staff salaries
  • Chart logistics costs

This will attract an initial budget of  approximately$10,000.

Return on Investment

With similar programs running in other regions and their success stories and impacts measured above average (Rogers, et al., 2013), the proposed program is deemed to be a success. With a large pediatric population calling for overweight and obesity intervention and the health center having a large expansion area, the program is certainly feasible. Implementation funds shall be sourced from the hospital development kitty as well as federal healthcare development funds.

The returns on investment will be realized through the collection of gym attendance revenue and consultation fees from increased clinical check ups. Return on investment will also be realized through reduced numbers of overweight and obese pediatric patients and generally a healthy population (Polacsek et al, 2014).


Canterbury, Marna,M.S., R.D., & Hedlund, Sue, RN,P.H.N., M.A.L. (2013). The potential of community-wide initiatives in the prevention of childhood obesity. Diabetes Spectrum, 26(3), 165-170. Retrieved from

Polacsek, M., Orr, J., O’Brien, L.,M., Rogers, V. W., Fanburg, J., & Gortmaker, S. L. (2014). Sustainability of key Maine youth overweight collaborative improvements: A follow-up study. Childhood Obesity, 10(4), 326-33. doi:

Rogers, V. W., & Motyka, E. (2009). 5-2-1-0 goes to school: a pilot project testing the feasibility of schools adopting and delivering healthy messages during the school day. Pediatrics, 123(Supplement 5), S272-S276.

Rogers, V. W., Hart, P. H., Motyka, E., Rines, E. N., Vine, J., & Deatrick, D. A. (2013). Impact of Let’s Go! 5-2-1-0: A Community-Based, Multisetting Childhood Obesity Prevention Program. Journal of pediatric psychology, jst057.

Serpas, S., M.D., Brandstein, Kendra, MSW,M.P.H., PhD., McKennett, M., M.D., Hillidge, S., M.A., Zive, Michelle,M.S., R.D., &Nader, P. R., M.D. (2013). San Diego healthy weight collaborative: A systems approach to address childhood obesity. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 24, 80-96. Retrieved from