The Veterans Affairs health system is rolling out a new program to combat obesity and diabetes among veterans:
As part of the new program, VA doctors will give out "prescriptions for health" to patients after measuring their body mass index, a measure of body fat. The prescriptions will list exercises and nutritional information that match patients' health needs.
Their excellent HIT infrastructure will provide easy assistance in implementing this program. We're desperately in need of solid public health and prevention programs; success here could indicate a model for other practitioners to adopt.
Further, VA members actually have a problem with obesity and diabetes. 70% are obese, compared to 31% of the general population. An astounding 20% have diabetes, compared with 7% of non-vets. So there's real room for improvement.