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Obesity Remains No. 1 Health Problem for Kids in 2009
ST. LOUIS, MO, (PRNewswire-USNewswire), August 16, 2009 - Public concern about childhood obesity is on the rise and it continues to outrank all other health problems as the No. 1 concern for children in the United States.

According to a report released today by the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health, the proportion of adults who believe childhood obesity is a big problem has increased from 35 percent of adults in 2008 to 42 percent in 2009.

While obesity has ranked as the top overall health concern for kids in the U.S. for the last two years, it has not always been the case for Hispanics or blacks.

"This is the first year the three major racial/ethnic groups all agree," says Matthew Davis, M.D., director of the poll. "In 2008, among whites, the chief concern was obesity, while among blacks the chief concern was teen pregnancy, and among Hispanics the chief concern was smoking."

In May 2009, the Poll asked adults to rate 23 different health concerns for children living in their communities.

Top 10 overall health concerns rated as a big problem for U.S. children in 2009:

1. Childhood obesity. Forty-two percent of U.S. adults rate childhood obesity as a big problem. In 2008, 35 percent of adults rated childhood obesity as the top overall health concern for children. In 2007, it was ranked No. 3.

2. Drug abuse. Thirty-six percent of U.S. adults rate drug abuse as a big problem for children and has held at No. 2 since 2007.

3. Smoking. Ranked No. 1 in 2007, smoking continues to hold the No. 3 position since 2008, with 32 percent of U.S. adults rating it as a big problem for kids.

4. Bullying. Holding at No. 4, 31 percent of U.S. adults rate bullying as a big problem for children.

5. Internet safety. Continuing at No. 5, 31 percent of U.S. adults consider internet safety a big problem for kids, slightly up from 27 percent in 2008.

6. Child abuse and neglect. This issue, which was ranked No. 10 in 2007, holds at No. 6 and was rated as a big problem among 29 percent of U.S. adults, up from 25 percent in 2008.

7. Alcohol abuse. Up from No. 8 in 2008, 26.5 percent of U.S. adults consider alcohol abuse a big problem. For the 2008 poll, 23 percent of adults listed alcohol abuse as a health concern for kids. In 2007, alcohol abuse was ranked fourth overall.

8. Stress. New to the list in 2009, 26 percent of U.S. adults rate stress as a big problem for children.

9. Not enough opportunities for physical activity. Up one spot from 2008, nearly 25 percent of U.S. adults rate this as a big problem for kids.

10. Teen pregnancy. Falling three places from No. 7 to No. 10, 24 percent of U.S. adults rated teen pregnancy as a big problem in 2009.

Health issues for children not ranked in the top ten include: chemicals in the environment, driving accidents, sexually transmitted infections, school violence, depression, attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, asthma, autism, eating disorders, neighborhood safety, dental problems, suicide andunsafe foods.

The National Poll on Children's Health also found that adults from low-income households making $30,000 per year or less rated smoking and tobacco use as the top child health concern, while the middle and highest income households making $30,000 to more than $100,000 per year rated childhood obesity as the biggest health concern for kids.

Stress now ranks among the top 10 child health problems, and was especially of concern for children in lower-income communities.

"As we reported in July 2009, levels of stress among children may relate to economic stresses faced by their families in the current economic downturn," says Davis, associate professor of general pediatrics and internal medicine at the U-M Medical School, and associate professor of public policy at the U-M Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. "The fact that stress rates so high in the list of child health problems is a reminder that most of the problems on the list are behavioral or psychological in nature."


Downtown Urgent Care in Downtown St. Louis
Downtown Urgent Care is located at 916 Olive Street in the Truman Building.

Downtown Urgent Care in Downtown St. Louis
Dr. Sonny Saggar, President and CEO of Downtown Urgent Care and Renita Barnes, Office Manager

Downtown Urgent Care Serves Need in Downtown St. Louis
by Bob Moore, SLFP.com
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), August 11, 2009 - The Downtown Urgent Care opened its doors in early 2009 on the first floor of the 27,000-square-foot Truman Building, which features an exterior neon sign depicting President Harry Truman. The location, at 916 Olive Street, is also in the Historic Old Post Office district, site of a new grocery store.

Dr. Sonny Saggar, President and CEO of Downtown Urgent Care, said he was very excited about the opening of the new Culinaria Market. "I think it will help our patients get faster and more affordable service in terms of perscription medication."

The close proximity of a full pharmacy in the store on the ground floor of the Ninth Street Garage will also provide additional services for the Downtown Urgent Care. "When patients go to the Culinaria they will have free parking which we never had before. They can get their medication and groceries at the same time," stated Dr. Saggar.

Dr. Sagger said that the decision to located downtown was to serve a need. "There's a hundred thousand people who work downtown and there was no immediate rapid turn-around medical center down here. I didn't understand why the big health care systems like Barnes and SLU weren't doing anything down here. Barnes even closed their clinic on the 1st of July. Downtown is growning and now has a doctor's office, as well as an internal medicine group, urgent care center and women's wellness center here. With the new grocery store and the book store around the corner, it's become a little village here now," said Dr. Sagger.

In response to a question regarding the critical issue of health care, Dr. Sagger emphasized that his priority is not profit, but patient care. "We administer our medical center here differently from most physicians in that we don't look at the money first. Of course we need money to survive, pay the bills and meet our payroll, but there are a lot of people falling on bad times and we are here to help them regardless or how much they can afford. We can work out a way for them to pay for their care."

"I welcome a plan for universal health care because I think it would make health care more affordable and accessible to millions of people who are too afraid to go to the doctor because they can't afford it," stated Dr. Sagger. For more information, call 314-436-9300.

See related story:
Schnucks Opens Culinaria Market in Downtown St. Louis

Archived St. Louis Community Health News:
Red DotTips to Help Boomers Prevent Exercise-Related Injuries
Red DotMissouri's Optometrists to Provide Free Professional Eye care for Infants
Red DotChildren's Health Advocacy Project Receives Funding
Red DotNovember is Missouri Family Health History Month
Red DotTweens and Teens Double Use of Diabetes Drugs
Red DotMissouri Receives Grants to Benefit Mothers, Babies
Red DotSusan G. Komen Race for the Cure Brings Thousands to Downtown St. Louis for the 10th Annual Event
Red DotAs Temperatures Heat Up, Cool Down St. Louis Receives Major Assistance from AmerenUE
Red DotLong Term Care Costs in Missouri Increased as Much as Three Times National Average
Red DotWashington University in St. Louis and AstraZeneca to Collaborate Alzheimer's Research
Red DotNew Report Estimates 10 Million Baby Boomers Will Develop Alzheimer's Disease in the United States

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Moore Design Group The Community Information Guide is presented in conjunction with the St. Louis Front Page and Southwest Illinois News. The sites are owned and maintained by the Moore Design Group for the sole purpose of disseminating news and information about the Metropolitan St. Louis area. Text or graphics may not be copied, rewritten or distributed in any manner whatsoever without written permission. For more information, contact editor@slfp.com All rights reserved world wide © 1996 - 2009 Moore Design Group.

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