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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1997 May 28;817:208-24.

School-based programs for health-risk reduction.

Author information

  • 1Tulane Center for Cardiovascular Health, Tulane School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112-2824, USA. tnickla@mailhost.tcs.tulane.edu


Based on implications from the pediatric studies of cardiovascular risk, it has become imperative that practical methods be developed to begin prevention of heart disease early in life. Schools provide an excellent setting for introducing comprehensive health education and promotion as a public health approach to the general population. A number of school-based health education programs have been developed (Heart Ahead/Heart Smart, CATCH, Gimme 5) for children in kindergarten through high school, in which education and environmental changes have been shown to be effective in promoting healthful behaviors. The effective implementation of health education depends to a large extent on the training and motivation of teachers, administrators, and food service staff. Training Institutes can be important for increasing personal awareness, disseminating information and materials, motivating health education efforts for teachers, food service staff and their students, and evaluating the health risk of school personnel.

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