By Rex Archer, MD, M.P.H., Director of Health of Kansas City Health Department
When I heard that during the first round of the HCF’s Health Madness, immunizations had been voted out in the first round, I was as shocked as Ohio State when Wichita State University defeated them to play in the Final Four. (Go, Shockers!)
Here we sit with HCF’s Health Madness narrowed down to the Final Four. The final contenders are: complete streets, essential oral health benefits, essential mental health benefits, and smoke-free bars and restaurants.
Healthy Eating/Active Living division
Complete Streets and Physical Activity both raced to the finish, with Complete Streets snagging the champion spot by five votes. Complete streets would facilitate safer transportation for everyone, especially children walking or riding a bike to school.
In the post below, Truman Medical Centers President/CEO John Bluford gives us a glimpse into how the hospital has carefully implemented a hiring policy based on tobacco usage, which was one of the 64 prevention strategies competing in Health Madness. Even though hiring practices was eliminated early on, Truman Medical Centers is truly embodying the spirit of Health Madness by implementing policies that have a healthful effect on its environment and its employees.
While round two featured some close games and buzzer-beating votes, the Sweet 16 featured matchups that were decided by five votes or more.
The darling of the tournament has been Smoke-Free Bars and Restaurants, but surprisingly, the prevention strategy that had the largest margin of victory this round was Essential Oral Health Benefits, with a 21-point victory.
HCF's Local Health Buzz Blog aims to discuss health and health policy issues that impact the uninsured and underserved in our service area. To submit a blog, please contact HCF Communications Officers, Jennifer Sykes, at email@example.com.