Mass In Motion
Mass in Motion Program Overview
In 2009 Massachusetts launched Mass in Motion. Mass in Motion aims to promote wellness and to prevent overweight and obesity for the Commonwealth with particular focus on the importance of healthy eating and physical activity. Health and Wellness is a priority area of the Healthy Mass Compact which was announced by Governor Deval Patrick and Secretary Judy Ann Bigby in 2008.
In 2009, Springfield was awarded one of ten state-wide grants to prioritize wellness initiatives at the community level. In year one, the City of Springfield created a Wellness Leadership Council comprised of key policy decision makers and community stakeholders. The Council created an action plan for Springfield to strengthen policies, systems and environmental change strategies by supporting healthy eating and active living. The plan was based on a thorough city-wide assessment and environmental scan of existing policies.
Creating healthy environments cannot be done in isolation by any one organization; it requires coordinated and comprehensive efforts. This important work can only be accomplished by bringing together a cross-section of agencies and organizations including municipal government, schools, health centers, hospitals, public safety, community based organizations and others to address this community crisis in a comprehensive way.
Why it’s Time to Focus on Obesity
Although Massachusetts compares favorably to most other states, overweight and obesity are still major public health problems in the Commonwealth. Consider these facts:
Elements of the Initiative
To address this significant public health problem, Massachusetts launched Mass in Motioning January 2009. Mass in Motion aims to promote wellness and to prevent overweight and obesity in Massachusetts – with a particular focus on the importance of healthy eating and physical activity.
This is a priority area of the Healthy Mass Compact, which was announced by Governor Deval Patrick and Secretary Judy Ann Bigly in 2008. Mass in Motion uses a multi-faceted approach, including:
Policy Change and Prevention
Investing in Healthy Residents and the Continued Success of Health Care Reform
Massachusetts has made great strides in insuring many of the state’s residents -- 98% according to the latest data. Mass in Motion continues efforts by the Patrick Administration to implement innovative public policy programs to support the success of Health Care Reform. Health care spending to manage obesity-related chronic diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes has skyrocketed over the last two decades. The policy changes and prevention strategies supported b y Mass in Motion will contribute to the long-term health of our residents and the continued success of our groundbreaking Health Care Reform law by reducing the impact of overweight and obesity – major risk factors for chronic disease.
Every area of the Commonwealth has been impacted by the overweight and obesity epidemic, but many communities and agencies are already engaged in important efforts to turn the tide in Massachusetts. Mass in Motion creates a new framework to better coordinate and support many of the existing initiatives in our state. It offers a platform from which to learn and share many of the best practices that are being developed right here in Massachusetts and across the nation.
Springfield Wellness Council Leadership bios
Mass in Motion Partners
Mass in Motion is the first statewide health initiative to be supported by all of the Commonwealth’s major health-funding foundations. The following partners have generously agreed to contribute funding and support for a statewide municipal wellness grant program (Mass in Motion Municipal Wellness and Leadership Grants):