Friday, November 5, 2010

e-blast: Nov. 5

Los Caminos
Live a healthy and spiritually fulfilling life with diabetes! Los Caminos is a new faith based diabetes management program sponsored by Bronx Health REACH in collaboration with the Institute for Family Health and Albert Einstein School of Medicine. Seven nurses from several churches are being trained to lead diabetes support groups in their churches. The program will begin January 2011 at Agape Love Christian Center located 1023 Allerton Ave. Bronx, NY 10469. For more information please call Eleonor Leger at 212-633-0800 x 1361 or Carlos Devia at ext. 1338.

Fine, Fit and Fabulous
Do you want to be Fine, Fit and Fabulous? Bronx Health REACH is sponsoring an exciting twelve-week program in Spanish and English which combines nutrition and fitness in a faith-based context. Fine, Fit and Fabulous uses scripture, nutrition education, exercise, and spiritual group support to help congregants adopt healthier eating and exercise habits. This fall, the program will be offered at three churches:
1. Central Baptist Church (English)
166 West 92nd Street, New York, NY 10023
2. Iglesia de Dios Pentecostal M.I. ( Amor, Poder y Gracia) (Spanish)
563 West 187th street, New York, NY 10033
3. Fordham Manor Reformed Church (Spanish)
2705 Reservoir Ave, Bronx, NY 10468
For more information please call Joseph Ellis at 212-633-0800 x 1351.

School Wellness Initiatives
HEA+LTHY Schools NY is a five-year program funded by the NYS Department of Health, Bureau of Chronic Disease Services to effect policy, systems and environmental change in District 7 and 9 schools. So far the schools that have officially signed up include PS 218, PS 43, JHS 145, and Bronx Writing Academy. We also expect to work with PS 18, PS 132, PS 64, and the Sheridan Academy for Young Leaders. In addition, many of these schools will be part of our Johnson & Johnson obesity prevention initiative, which is focused on working with teachers and school administrators to integrate nutrition education and physical activity into the classroom curriculum.
We are currently recruiting for the Advisory Committee which will help to shape these two programs. We hope to engage teachers, parents, school administrators, staff at the school district level, and others interested in school-based wellness and nutrition education. If you are interested in participating on this Advisory Committee, please contact Sigrid Aarons at (212-633-0800 x 1364) or Kelly Moltzen at (x 1328).

Social Marketing Campaign
Bronx Health REACH is developing a social marketing campaign to increase fruit and vegetable consumption among school-age children in the South Bronx. As a preliminary step, the coalition conducted formative research with 4th and 5th graders, their parents and school staff at MARC Academy and Family Center. Using photovoice, focus groups and interviews, data were collected on dietary preferences and perceived obstacles toward healthy eating. Findings included misconceptions around the nutritional content of packaged foods, portion sizes, and healthy beverages, as well as concerns about food quality and sanitation. A paper is being written on the findings.

NYC Nutrition Education Network (NYCNEN) meeting November 19
NYCNEN’s first meeting of the year will focus on “From the White House to the Big Apple: National & Local Movements to Fight Childhood Obesity.” The keynote speaker, Erica Pijai, MS, RD, is based in Washington, D.C. and will speak about the Chefs Move to Schools initiative. Other speakers are Nancy Easton, MS, Director of Wellness in the Schools; Lillian Dunn, MPH, from the NYC Department of Health will highlight Move to Improve; and Pamela Koch, EdD, RD, from Teachers College, Columbia University will highlight the steps PS 75 took to become NYC’s first Healthier US Challenge School, a national program that awards schools for improving school lunches and increasing physical activity during the day. Over 800 schools across the country have met the challenge so far.
Date: November 19, 2010
Time: 9:00am-12:00pm
Place: The New School, 66 West 12th St, room 407
Free for NYCNEN members; $5 for non-members. Please RSVP to if you plan on attending.

Water Jets
Water jets can bring drinking water to schools that lack adequate water fountains. They cost $750 for a double bowl unit and $900 for a triple bowl unit. The Office of SchoolFood is willing to install water jets in more schools if the funds are raised. If your school has the money or the ability to fundraise this money and you would like to get water jets installed in your school, please let us know. Currently, PS 277 in District 7 and PS 166 in District 9 have water jets.

NYC School Food Report
City Harvest and the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Public Health at Hunter College released the report “Recipes for Health: Improving School Food in New York City.” This report is meant for parents, teachers, students, policymakers, and advocates, and describes how the school food system works in New York City, recent improvements made by the Department of Education in addressing food quality and nutrition concerns, as well as continuing challenges NYC faces in improving the nutrition environment in NYC schools. Learn what you can do today, and pass along the information to others who may be interested! You can download the report at

Child Nutrition Reauthorization
Congress must pass a new version of the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization bill soon, which was last passed in 2007. A new version of the bill was passed by the Senate (“Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act,” S 3307), but this bill supports cuts to the SNAP/ Food Stamp program and is inferior to the House bill (“Improving Nutrition for America’s Children Act,” HR 5504). On September 30, the House refused to pass the Senate version of the bill, and instead passed a “continuing resolution,” which extends the current bill until December 31, 2010. This means we have the next few months to reinforce to our representatives the importance of finding alternative offsets so that HR 5504 can be fully funded! We need your voice to make this happen – find your Congressman’s contact information at
For more information, visit

Free screening of the documentary “Food Stamped”
On November 9, 2010, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine will host the East Coast debut of "Food Stamped." "Food Stamped" is an informative and humorous documentary film following a couple as they attempt to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet on a food stamp budget. The event will begin with a light reception at 5:00pm followed by the 60-minute documentary. A discussion amongst Co-star Shira Potash and Montefiore physician participants of the Food Stamp Challenge will close the evening. The documentary trailer can be viewed at:
Date: Tuesday, November, 9, 2010
Time: 5:00pm – 8:00pm
Location: Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Forchheimer Building, Robbins Auditorium
1300 Morris Park Avenue, Bronx, NY 10467

San Francisco Passes “Healthy Meal” Legislation
San Francisco passed an ordinance this week that sets nutritional standards for restaurant meals that come with a toy. The ordinance sets a limit on the amount of calories, sugar, fat, and salt permitted in these meals. San Francisco is now the second jurisdiction in America to adapt this legislation, which was designed by the National Policy & Legal Analysis Network to be adapted by localities across the country. More information about the ordinance and Public Health Law & Policy can be found here.

Upcoming Nutrition and Fitness Workgroup Meeting Nov. 22
At our next meeting we will hear from Melissa Pflugh about the unique social marketing approach to school wellness and nutrition education program used by Healthy Schools Healthy Families. At the meeting, we will discuss the role of the Workgroup regarding the Advisory Committee for Bronx Health REACH’s school wellness initiatives, next steps for our social marketing campaign, and an update from the October 29-30 Food, Faith and Health Disparities Summit.
Date: Monday, November 22
Time: 10:00am-12:00pm
Place: Morrisania Neighborhood Family Health Center, 1225 Gerard Avenue, Room 214

Campaign to End Segregated Care
Bronx Health REACH Coalition members, alongside staff from New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, have been meeting with New York City elected officials regarding their concerns about segregated specialty care in academic medical institutions. The current system provides a different level of care to patients based on insurance status. Several Assemblymembers and other elected officials have expressed their interest in supporting health equality legislation. In the 2009-2010 Albany legislative session, bills were introduced in both the Senate and the Assembly which would hold hospitals accountable for providing all patients with the same high quality health care regardless of insurance or income. More information will come in our Fall 2010 Bronx Health REACH newsletter. If you would like to get involved in our Segregated Care Campaign, please contact Bernice McFarline at" or (212) 633-0800 x 1344.

Healthcare Reform
The first round of major changes to the new health care reform bill went into effect in New York on September 23. Below are some of the improvements in coverage that apply to all health plans and which will go into effect when your first new insurance policy year starts after September 23, 2010.
  • No annual or lifetime limit on how much your insurer will pay for your medical care
  • Insurers cannot refuse to cover pre-existing conditions for children age 18 or younger (adults will receive the same protections in 2014)
  • Children can stay on their parents’ insurance until age 29 in New York
  • Insurers can only cancel policies if fraud is involved, not for small, unintentional errors on insurance applications
For more information about these changes, email Ying Guo at for a brochure (available in English and Spanish), or visit You can also view the YouToons video at if you haven’t seen it yet. A Spanish language version will soon be available.

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