Excess weight figures in Argentina have become alarming, as overweight currently affects 57.9% of the adult population and 22.7% of school children, 5.9% of which are obese. In addition, studies have revealed that 80.5% of schools have at least one kiosk and most of these (91.4%) offer food that is nutritiously inappropriate for children. Moreover, only 1 in 4 school kiosks offer fruits and only 5.6% of schools have free available water, which contributes to the high level of consumption of sugary drinks, with figures indicating that 50% of students consume 2 or more sugary drinks per day. Interventions in school settings are one of the most widely recommended obesity prevention strategies, and they have been proven to be considerably more effective when adopting a multi-component approach that simultaneously includes changes on diet and physical activity, involves families and/or the community, and are longer term.
Objectives: to analyze the implementation process of a healthy school environment in selected schools in the Municipality of Almirante Brown, to create evidence which could contribute to design effective public policies for obesity prevention in our country.
Methodology: we will carry out an implementation research to translate theoretical knowledge into concrete practice. We suggest a type 3 hybrid design to be able to study not only the implementation strategy, but also observe and gather information about the effects of the intervention. 6 schools will be selected for intervention with random and stratified sampling of public and private secondary schools in the Municipality of Almirante Brown. Sampling stratums will be based on the type of management (public vs private) and socioeconomic level of the school radius (high, medium, low), to capture the socioeconomic diversity of the Municipality. We will then characterize health conditions of the students and features of the school environment (inside and outside the school); identify actors that can help to determine barriers and facilitators for the implementation of healthy school environments; describe the argentine regulatory framework; intervene in the selected schools to promote and facilitate a healthy lifestyle in the educational community; and elaborate recommendations for the implementation of healthy school environments.
Expected impact: we expect that the conclusions of this study will help identify relevant barriers and facilitators for the implementation of healthy school environments at the municipal level, and that this experience will contribute to provide evidence that is useful to scale up this kind of healthy environment strategies at a province and national level.”
- Jonatan Konfino Centro de Estudios de Estado y Sociedad (CEDES) Argentina
- Juan Manuel Castelli Municipio de Almirante Brown Argentina
- Tamar Finzi Center for the Study of State and Society (CEDES) Argentina
- Noelia Cabrera Center for the Study of State and Society (CEDES) Argentina
- Natalia Gualdoni Center for the Study of State and Society (CEDES) Argentina
- Valentina Castagnari Torcuato Di Tella University Argentina
- Adriana Perez Faculty of Exact and Natural Sciences. University of Buenos Aires Argentina
- Argentina Ministry of Health, Argentina