Reducing adult and youth obesity will be the top priority for the Williams County Health Department as part of its approach to make the county healthier.
The department has released five priorities it will seek to improve in the next three years. Following obesity, there is adult cardiovascular disease, youth mental health, youth substance abuse and women’s health screenings.
The priorities are based on a community health assessment conducted earlier this year.
The CHA helps area hospitals maintain their tax-exempt status as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires an assessment every three years. They must also adopt and implement strategy to meet the needs identified through the assessment.
The Health Department and others will now work on action steps that will deal with several health issues. The action steps will be based on the findings which will help the health care agencies target specific demographics.
Priority #1: Decrease Obesity
•Increase education of healthy eating for adults
•Implement a food pharmacy program
•Increase education of healthy eating for youth
•Implement Complete Streets policies
•Implement OHA Healthy Hospitals initiative
Priority #2: Improve Cardiovascular Health
•Implement Go Red for Women initiative
•Increase nutrition/physical education materials being offered to patients by primary care offices
Priority #3: Improve Youth Mental Health
•Increase awareness of trauma informed care
•Increase the number primary care physicians screening for depression during office visits
•Expand evidence-based programs targeting youth
•Provide mental health first aid training
•Implement evidence-based programs and counseling services targeting youth
•Increase evidence-based services through providers
Priority #4: Decrease Youth Substance Abuse
•Expand evidence-based programs and counseling services targeting youth and families
•Increase the number of schools screening for alcohol
•Implement a community based comprehensive program to reduce alcohol abuse
•Increase community awareness & education of substance abuse issues and trends
•Implement Parent Project
Priority #5: Increase Women’s Health Screenings
•Create consistent women’s health screening recommendations
•Increase education materials being offered to patients by primary care offices
•Decrease barriers to treatment
The actions steps came from the following findings:
While 95 percent of adults in Williams County report having health insurance, those that do not cite the high cost of premiums, co-pays and deductibiles as significant barriers to getting coverage. Ten percent of adults under 30 do not have health insurance.
Of those that do have health insurance, 46 percent get it through their employer.
Overall people (55 percent) think they are in good shape, unless (14 percent) they have a condition such as high blood pressure or diabetes.
35 percent of adults report having high blood pressure.
23 percent rated their mental health as not good on 4 or more days in the previous month
20 percent reported their physical health was not good on 4 or more days in the previous month
17 percent of adults reported that poor mental or physical health kept them from doing usual activities such as self-care, work, or recreation.
6 percent have coronary heart disease or angina
4 percent survived a heart attack. For people over 65, that total rises to 11 percent. The state and national rates are 5 and 4 percent, respectively.
1 percent have survived a stroke
Fourteen percent have been diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives. Of those, 34 percent report it was skin cancer; 28 percent cervical and 22 percent breast.
Seven percent report having diabetes. That rises to 19 percent for those over age 65.
Of those, 88 percent were obese; 76 percent had high cholesterol and 74 percent had high blood pressure. These people reported not being in good health.
18 percent were diagnosed with asthma.
33 percent have been told they have arthritis.
71 percent of respondents are obese or overweight by the Body Mass Index
41 percent said they were obese.
45 percent said they were trying to lose weight.
22 percent were current smokers. Cigarettes (25 percent) are the most popular form of tobacco.
18 percent were former smokers.
39 percent of adults had at least one alcoholic drink in the past month. For males, it was 51 percent.
9 percent drank at least three days a week.
15 percent were binge drinkers and 43 percent of all current drinkers were binge drinkers. Statewide the rate is 18 percent and 16 percent nationally.
With regard to youth
13 percent of Williams County youth were classified as obese by BMI
13 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 14 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS)
32 percent described themselves as being slightly or very overweight
28 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 32 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS)
7 percent of youth reported they went to bed hungry because their family did not have enough money for food at least one night per week
76 percent of youth had participated in at least 60 minutes of physical activity on three or more days in the past week
33 percent participated in at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day in the past week
15 percent did not participate in at least 60 minutes of physical activity on any day in the past week
The state average is 13 percent (2013 YRBS) and 14 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS)
45 percent of all youth were trying to lose weight, increasing to 55 percent of females (compared to 35 percent of males)
88 percent of youth ate 1-4 servings of fruit or vegetables per day, 6 percent ate five or more servings per day
23 percent drank soda pop (not diet), punch, Kool-Aid, sports drinks, energy drinks or other fruit flavored drinks at least once per day during the past week
25 percent reported they drank energy drinks for the following reasons: To stay awake (15 percent); Before games or practice (3 percent); To get pumped up (6 percent); To mix with alcohol (2 percent); To help them perform (3 percent); Some other reason (8 percent)
Williams County youth spent an average of: 3.0 hours on their cell phones per day; 1.9 hours on their computer/tablet; 1.8 hours watching TV; 1.2 hours playing video games; 24 percent of Ohio youth spent 3 or more hours watching TV; 25 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS).
90 percent of youth participated in extracurricular activities
They participated in the following: Sports or intramural programs (56 percent); Exercising (outside of school) (41 percent); School club or social organization (36 percent); Church youth group (34 percent); Church or religious organization (30 percent); Part-time job (20 percent); Caring for siblings after school (16 percent); Babysitting for other kids (16 percent); Volunteering in the community (13 percent)
18 percent of Williams County youth had tried smoking at some time in their life
Compared to 32 percent of U.S. youth (2015 YRBS)
3 percent were current smokers compared to 15 percent of Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 11 percent of U.S. youth (2015 YRBS)
31 percent of Williams County youth who smoked in the past year had tried to quit smoking compared to 45 percent of U.S. youth (2015 YRBS)
Current smokers got their cigarettes from the following: Borrowed cigarettes from someone else (35 percent); Gave someone else money to buy them cigarettes (30 percent); Bought them from a store or gas station (15 percent); Took them from a family member (10 percent); Someone 18 years or older gave them cigarettes (5 percent).
Youth used the following forms of tobacco in the past year: Cigarettes (10 percent); Hookah (3 percent); E-Cigarettes (8 percent); Black and Milds (3 percent); Chewing tobacco or snuff (7 percent); Swishers (3 percent); Snus (4 percent); Cigarillos (2 percent); Cigars (4 percent).
35 percent of youth have had at least one drink of alcohol in their lifetime, Increasing to 51 percent of those ages 17 and older, Compared to 63 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS.
34 percent of youth who reported drinking had their first drink at 12 years old or younger.
16 percent had at least one drink in the past month (current drinker), Increasing to 25 percent of those ages 17 and older, Compared to 30 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 33 percent for the U.S.
Based on all youth, 7 percent were binge drinkers, Increasing to 14 percent of those ages 17 and older, Compared to 16 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 18 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS).
43 percent of those who drank had an episode of binge drinking in the past month, Increasing to 48 percent of females.
10 percent of youth had ridden in a car driven by someone who had been drinking alcohol, Compared to 17 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 20 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS).
Current youth drinkers got their alcohol from the following:, A parent gave it to them (35 percent); Someone gave it to them (26 percent); An older friend or sibling bought it for them (23 percent); Someone older bought it (20 percent); A friend’s parent gave it to them (8 percent); Gave someone else money to buy it (8 percent); Took it from a store or family member (6 percent); Bought it in a liquor store/ gas station (2 percent); Used a fake ID to buy alcohol (2 percent).
4 percent of Williams County youth had used marijuana in the past month, Increasing to 6 percent) of high school youth , Compared to 21 percent of Ohio youth (2013 YRBS) and 22 percent of U.S. young people (2015 YRBS).
The average age of onset was 13.5 years old.
5 percent of all Williams County youth reported that someone had offered, sold, or given them an illegal drug on school property compared to 20 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 22 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS).
3 percent of Williams County youth used medications that were not prescribed for them or took more than prescribed to feel good or get high at some time in their lives.
Youth who misused prescription medications got them in the following ways: A friend gave it to them (47 percent); A parent gave it to them (16 percent).
Williams County youth have tried the following in their life: 4 percent used inhalants; 2 percent used ecstasy/MDMA; 2 percent misused over-the-counter medications; 1 percent used K2/spice; 1 percent misused cough syrup; 1 percent used cocaine; 1 percent used steroids; 1 percent used posh/salvia/synthetic marijuana; 1 percent used liquid THC; 1 percent used bath salts; 1 percent reported misusing hand sanitizer; <1 percent used methamphetamines; <1 percent used Cloud 9.
Youth and Sex
16 percent of Williams County youth have had sexual intercourse.
Increasing to 39 percent of those ages 17 and over.
Compared to 43 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 41 percent of U.S. youth (2015 YRBS).
16 percent of youth participated in oral sex, Increasing to 42 percent of those ages 17 and over.
4 percent of youth had participated in anal sex, Increasing to 6 percent of those ages 17 and over.
20 percent of youth participated in sexting, Increasing to 23 percent of those ages 17 and over.
20 percent of youth had viewed pornography, Increasing to 30 percent of males and those ages 17 and over.
Of youth who were sexually active, 59 percent had one sexual partner and 41 percent had multiple partners.
3 percent of all sexually active youth had four or more sexual partners, compared to 12 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 12 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS)
Of those Williams County youth who were sexually active, 20 percent had done so by the age of 13, Another 41 percent had done so by the age of 15.
The average age of onset was 15 years old.
Williams County youth used the following birth control methods: Condoms (56 percent); Birth control pill (30 percent); Used the withdrawal method (20 percent);
7 percent of sexually active youth were not using a reliable method of protection
Williams County youth experienced the following: Wanted to get pregnant (1 percent); Tried to get pregnant (1 percent); Had been pregnant (1 percent); Treated for an STD (1 percent); Had a miscarriage (1 percent).
Youth mental health
22 percent of youth reported feeling sad or hopeless almost every day for 2 weeks or more in a row, Increasing to 28 percent of females, Compared to 26 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 30 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS).
10 percent of females attempted suicide and 4 percent made more than one attempt in the past year, Compared to 6 percent for Ohio (2013 YRBS) and 9 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS).
Of those youth who attempted suicide, 7 percent resulted in an injury, poisoning, or overdose that had to be treated by a doctor or nurse.
Williams County youth reported the following causes of anxiety, stress, and depression: Academic success (29 percent); Break up (19 percent); Fighting with friends (29 percent); Being bullied (19 percent); Fighting at home (25 percent); Death of family member or friend (18 percent); Sports (24 percent); Self-image (18 percent); Peer pressure (22 percent).
The following are the top 10 ways Williams County youth reported dealing with anxiety, stress and depression: Sleeping (45 percent); Hobbies (35 percent); Playing video games (28 percent); Talking to someone in their family (26 percent); Praying (25 percent); Texting someone (25 percent); Exercising (25 percent); Talking to a peer (23 percent); Eating (17 percent); Reading the Bible (14 percent).
Williams County youth drivers did the following while driving in the past month: Ate (50 percent); Talked on their cell phone (46 percent); Drove while tired or fatigued (45 percent); Texted (36 percent); Used the internet on cell phone (17 percent); Used cell phone for other things (10 percent); Checked Facebook on cell phone (10 percent); Applied makeup (5 percent); Played electronic games on cell phone (3 percent).
47 percent of Williams County youth had been bullied in the past year; 37 percent were verbally bullied; 25 percent were indirectly bullied; 12 percent were cyber bullied; 12 percent were physically bullied; 2 percent were sexually bullied
In the past year, youth had been the victim of teasing or name calling because of the following: Weight, size or physical appearance (77 percent); Sexual orientation (23 percent); Race or ethnic background (14 percent); Gender (10 percent)
1 percent of youth carried a weapon on school property in the past 30 days, Compared to 4 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS)
5 percent of youth were threatened or injured with a weapon on school property in the past year, Compared to 6 percent for the U.S. (2015 YRBS)
12 percent of Williams County youth reported another teen or student hit, slapped, or physically hurt them on purpose in the past 12 months
5 percent of youth reported a parent or caregiver hit, slapped, or physically hurt them on purpose in the past 12 months
2 percent of youth were physically forced to have sexual intercourse when they did not want to.