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Monday, November 14, 2011

Seton Health Receives Grant to Reduce Childhood and Adolescent Obesity

TROY, N.Y. – New York State Health Commissioner Nirav R. Shah, M.D., M.P.H. announced that Seton Health has been awarded one of nine New York State grants aimed to reduce child and adolescent obesity. The nine grants total up to $4.5 million over five years with each recipient receiving initial awards of $150,000 for an 18-month period, and an opportunity to qualify for additional awards to a maximum of $500,000 over the five-year period.

The grants are targeted to help children and adolescents in populations reflecting high incidence of obesity and excess weight, including low-income populations, certain racial and ethnic minorities, and persons with developmental disabilities. The grant funding will support training for health care providers and other initiatives.

"Overweight and obese children are at great risk for a lifetime of serious health problems such as diabetes, coronary disease or hypertension, and earlier intervention can result in better quality of life and reduced health care problems," Commissioner Shah said. "These grants offer health care providers greater tools to assess pediatric patients for weight problems and takes appropriate steps to prevent childhood obesity."

Approximately 32 percent of students in public schools outside of New York City are overweight or obese. New York State health care expenditures related to obesity in children and adolescents costs an estimated $242 million each year. Obesity is the second leading cause of morbidity and mortality in New York and the U.S. as a whole, and a key risk factor for many debilitating diseases.

The New York State Department of Health's Obesity Prevention Program is working to reduce the prevalence of obesity and overweight children and adolescents, as well as the burden of obesity-related diseases. Initiatives include: health care programs to promote age-appropriate screening for obesity, educating community members and officials about the public health threat of obesity; and surveillance and evaluation of anti-obesity programs

The grants will facilitate the delivery of pediatric care in accordance with the American Medical Association'sExpert Committee Recommendations for the Assessment, Prevention and Treatment of Child and Adolescent Overweight and Obesity(

Seton Health is a comprehensive, not-for-profit, integrated healthcare system anchored by St. Mary’s Hospital in Troy. It provides health care services from more than 20 sites in Rensselaer, Saratoga and Albany counties. For more information, please visit

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