Reducing Obesity Through Improved Access to Healthcare

Last updated: July 15, 2021, at 11:33 a.m. PT

Originally published: July 15, 2021, at 10:38 a.m. PT


The past year has reminded all of us that health care is a community effort and we’re all in this together. Poor health and obesity can lead to various ailments and is a leading cause of death. Across the state, 12 percent of children and 29 percent of adults are considered obese, according to Washington’s Department of Health. And obesity disproportionality affects marginalized groups, and in particular Washingtonians who live below the poverty line. The global pandemic is also expected to accelerate the rates of obesity, creating lasting impacts and poorer health outcomes for years to come. But it is preventable, and we can do something about it.

At the YMCA of Greater Seattle, we see any health disparity as a cause for concern and take a whole person health approach: from offering coaching and personalized fitness training to creating access to mental health and youth education, and we undertake advocacy work in our local and national government. 

Nationally, the YMCA is calling on Congress to fix the Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program and pass the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act which would provide coverage to evidence- and community-based programs that provide intensive behavior therapy for adults living with obesity. 

But there is more to be done and it’s now more crucial than ever that we seek solutions that are more effective and accessible for all. In keeping with our commitment to greater access to information and providing a framework for equity in health care, the YMCA of Greater Seattle is proud to join the Obesity Care Advocacy Network in bringing this important discussion to the forefront. 

We invite you to attend a webinar exploring how to improve health care access and health management for adults, families, and children/youth on Tuesday, July 27 at 11:30 am (pst)

Please join President & CEO of the YMCA of Greater Seattle, Loria Yeadon; Director, Global Clinical Research & Nutrition, WW International, Michelle I. Cardel; Senior Vice President, Research, Science and Health of the Public, American Academy of Family Physicians, Julie K. Wood; and moderator Senior Director of Community Health with YMCA of the USA, Heather Hodge, in a discussion that brings together health care providers, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector to explore how community-oriented solutions are needed to address obesity from prevention to treatment. 

Webinar Registration

Tickets are free, though preregistration is required. RSVP here. This conversation is part two of a three-part series. Part one is available here.

About the YMCA of Greater Seattle

At the Y, strengthening community is our cause. We’re an inclusive organization with a shared commitment to nurture the potential of youth, promote healthy living, and foster social responsibility. We welcome all and promote a culture free from bias and injustice. We are dedicated to removing institutional and systemic barriers that result in oppression and racism. We will be accountable to marginalized communities for creating equitable and sustainable environments where social justice is woven into every facet of our programs, and by caring for our communities in a culturally versatile and respectful manner. 

About the Obesity Care Advocacy Network 

The Obesity Care Advocacy Network (OCAN) is a diverse group of organizations that have come together to change how we perceive and approach obesity in the United States. OCAN envisions a future where obesity is fully recognized and treated as a complex chronic disease. For additional information, please visit OCAN