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December 2012 Health Email from Dr. Bill Paul


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Improve Health and Wellbeing of Children

Fatherhood Program

The New Life Program, A Place Where Fathers Matter, continues to move forward. We recently began our second year of funding on September 30, 2012. We were able to actively engage and enroll over 300 fathers in the program during our first year. The most exciting part of this accomplishment is that these 300 fathers represent well over 700 children in the Nashville community with most of them living in and around the North and East Nashville areas. The enrolled fathers have received numerous resources as a part of the New Life Program. Some of those resources include the following:

  • Parenting education

  • Employment opportunities/Job placement

  • Incentive items

  • Healthier marriage and relationship education

  • Direct steps to home ownership

  • Financial security and self-sufficiency education

  • Anger and stress management skills

  • Fatherhood support group

  • Increased self-esteem

  • Modified child support payments

  • Development of a positive identity as a man

  • Education regarding the importance of fathers

The New Life Program utilizes a network of community organizations to provide most of the above resources to fathers. Our Father Advocates (case managers) have been very successful in developing and maintaining new partnerships with the community to provide the fathers with the resources they need.

Our second class of Fathers graduated on October 20, 2012. Thirty-two men are in that group. They are now considered New Life Program Certified Fathers which means they have completed between 40-48 hours of our most rigorous instructional program.

Congratulations to Dr. Kimberlee Wyche-Etheridge

Kimberlee Wyche-Etheridge, MD, MPH was recently awarded the 2012 Harvey Sperling Award for Excellence in Leadership. Dr. Kim was selected by her peers due to her outstanding leadership in her role as Chair of the Alignment Nashville Primary Care and Healthy Starts Committees. Congratulations to Dr. Kim.

Increase Physical Activity and Healthy Eating and

Reduce Tobacco Use In Nashville Schools

Metro Nashville Public Schools has adopted a healthy vending policy. The vending guidelines are based on the Institute of Medicine Standards and TN State Board of Education Minimal Nutritional Standards Rule and are incorporated into the existing Nutrition Education and MNPS Nutrition Services policy. The policy also centralizes the vending contracts for the district. The implementation timeline for this policy is 100% healthy options available by August 1, 2014.

Tobacco Prevention and Control

MPHD is participating in a national trend to increase the number of smoke-free multi-unit housing complexes. MPHD is partnering with Metro Development and Housing Agency (MDHA) to provide technical assistance as Nashville's public housing authority has adopted tobacco-free policy and began implementation within the seven senior high-rise facilities.

MPHD is proud of the work accomplished by the Tobacco Program. During the last few years, the program has redirected efforts to be more involved in the place-based PSE movement in sync with the CPPW campaign. Tobacco policy efforts are on-going within Nashville workplaces, faith organizations, and higher education organizations.

This effort is especially impressive given that the MPHD Tobacco Program functions on grant dollars from the Tennessee Department of Health in the amount of $42,500 and .69 FTE. Nashville's success compares favorably to other communities such as Boston, MA-$6.1 million, Chicago IL-$11.6 million or Los Angeles, CA-$16.2 million that are also striving to achieve smoke-free multi-unit housing but were funded by CPPW awards.

MDHA Smoking Cessation Collaboration

Behavioral Health Services (BHS) taught a 12-week Smoking Cessation Education Series at Edgefield Towers, an MDHA high-rise, with a celebration for those that completed the series on September 17, 2012. There were eight individuals that attended at least one session of the education classes. Three individuals completed the series and while not completely tobacco free, made notable progress toward quitting smoking. Progress included reducing the number of cigarettes smoked, making a commitment to stop smoking and committing to healthier lifestyle choices.

Thanks for your commitment to a healthy Nashville!

Bill Paul

William S. Paul, MD, MPH
Director  |  Metro Public Health Department
615.340.5622   |  |  Twitter:

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