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"Health By Design" symposium in Sacramento

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  • Dayana Salazar
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 15, 2005
      > Symposium to explore how better community planning
      > can improve public health
      > SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Has the design and construction
      > of the American suburb
      > led to poorer health? Are there long-term public
      > health consequences to
      > building schools, offices and stores far from where
      > people live?
      > Experts point to long commutes and short
      > neighborhood drives as not only
      > adding to air quality problems but also inhibiting
      > physical activity. The
      > results, they say, can be seen in the rising rates
      > of obesity, asthma,
      > osteoporosis, heart problems and a variety of other
      > chronic maladies.
      > Excess weight and physical inactivity alone are not
      > only the nation's
      > leading causes of premature death behind
      > tobacco-related illnesses, they
      > also come with a very expensive price tag. In
      > California, obesity-related
      > problems cost more than $25 billion a year in
      > medical bills, injuries and
      > lost employee productivity.
      > Such costs, both physical and financial, will be
      > among the focal points at
      > a unique, one-day symposium in Sacramento this fall.
      > Experts ranging from
      > architects and physicians to land-use planners,
      > developers and public
      > health officials are coming together to explore the
      > broad impacts of the
      > 'built environment' - the ways subdivisions, urban
      > centers and roadways
      > have been designed in recent decades - and how
      > better planning could
      > improve public health.
      > The daylong event, entitled "Health by Design," is
      > slated for Thursday,
      > October 20, 2005, at the Sacramento Convention
      > Center.
      > "Planners, architects, designers and elected
      > officials need to understand
      > that all the decisions they make have health
      > implications," says Richard J.
      > Jackson, a pediatrician and the former state public
      > health officer for
      > California. "They're not merely design,
      > architecture, planning, water-use,
      > land-use, air-use or commercial-use decisions."
      > Jackson is co-author of the book Urban Sprawl and
      > Public Health: Designing,
      > Planning, and Building for Healthy Communities and a
      > featured speaker at
      > the upcoming symposium. He points out that public
      > health and community
      > design have gone hand-in-hand in the past. At the
      > turn of the last century,
      > one of the ways doctors fought infectious diseases
      > such as tuberculosis and
      > cholera was by insisting that cities had to build
      > better sanitation and
      > sewage systems.
      > Jackson and other advocates of what's often termed
      > "Smart Growth" suggest
      > that the efforts to improve pedestrian facilities,
      > preserve green space and
      > upgrade public transportation can promote physical
      > and mental health, and
      > thereby help reduce the rise in chronic ills and
      > conditions.
      > Sponsored by the UC Davis Health System and the
      > Central Valley chapter of
      > the American Institute of Architects, the 'Health by
      > Design' symposium will
      > also feature architect and urban designer Daniel
      > Solomon; Don Chen,
      > executive director of Smart Growth America; and
      > futurist Maddy Dychtwald,
      > who will speak to some of the key changing
      > demographic and social trends in
      > the coming decade.
      > Also on the day's agenda are Edward O'Neil, from UC
      > San Francisco's Center
      > for Health Professions, and Marc Schenker, from the
      > UC Davis Department of
      > Public Health Sciences. O'Neil plans to highlight
      > the major trends and
      > challenges facing America's health-care workforce.
      > Schenker plans to lead a
      > panel discussion that focuses on some of the proven
      > strategies for
      > enhancing the livability of newly built communities.
      > Space for the Health by Design event is limited.
      > Interested individuals
      > are urged to reserve early. The symposium is
      > accredited as a continuing
      > education program for architects and physicians.
      > For additional
      > information visit
      > http://www.healthbydesignconference.org/
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