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Regional Center Staff
This Months Featured Article

Promoting Healthy Lifestyles

Healthy People 2010

The U.S. Surgeon General established the Healthy People initiative in 1979 and it is updated every ten years. Healthy People 2010 is a “broad-based collaborative effort among government, private, public, and nonprofit organizations.” Healthy People 2010 has two goals:

  • to increase the quality and length of healthy life; and
  • to eliminate health disparities.

Ten Leading Health Indicators and 467 science-based objectives were developed for Healthy People 2010. The ten indicators represent the top health issues in America. According to the CDC, the objectives aim to “promote healthy behaviors, improve health outcomes, reduce risk factors, and ensure universal access to preventive strategies and health services that can improve the health of all Americans.” During the progress review for this initiative in 2000, it was recommended that objectives for people with disabilities be added. You can read more and get details at the Healthy People web site at: Go to this page and check out the Resources section. You will find many recommended web sites that relate to each of the Health Indicators. More information on the Leading Health Indicators may be found on this web site in the article for Service Providers. is a link to the Healthy People 2010 goal: Promote the health of people with disabilities, prevent secondary conditions, and eliminate disparities between people with and without disabilities in the U.S. population. This extensive document details the thirteen objectives to achieve that goal.

Healthy Lifestyle and the Individual Program Planning (IPP) Process

After reading the Healthy People 2010 information, regional center staff may want to consider ways to include objectives in IPP’s to address health and risk factors, as appropriate. Reducing risk factors is a significant emphasis of the Healthy People initiative. The Leading Health Indicators are:

  • Physical Activity
  • Overweight and Obesity
  • Tobacco Use
  • Substance Abuse
  • Responsible Sexual Behavior
  • Mental Health
  • Injury and Violence
  • Environmental Quality
  • Immunization
  • Access to Health Care

The ten Indicators represent a checklist to be used when considering the status of individual consumers. Using the detailed information available on the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) web site, specific determinations may be made by the team. Addressing the quality and years of healthy life, and eliminating disparities are subjects that are consistent with the personal outcome focus of IPP’s.


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