Foundation fights obesity

NANAIMO – NRGH receives funding for new childhood obesity clinic.

Nanaimo Regional General Hospital’s new childhood obesity clinic is one of almost 30 different B.C. organizations to receive funding this year from a new provincial foundation.

In its first year of operation, Pacific Blue Cross’s Community Connection Health Foundation has given out almost $300,000 to organizations that improve outcomes in the areas of mental health and chronic diseases.

Nanaimo hospital’s pediatric ambulatory health clinic received an $11,000 grant last October to help fund an innovative initiative to address childhood obesity.

The initiative enlists the help of a fitness instructor and volunteer ‘activity coaches’ from Vancouver Island University’s sport, health and physical education program to work with families on individually tailored exercise plans.

The Community Connection Health Foundation’s funding comes from the interest generated on a $10-million endowment provided by Pacific Blue Cross, a leading benefits provider in the province for the past 70 years.

Going forward, Pacific Blue Cross will continue to work through the foundation to support innovative ways to address the rising costs of mental illness and chronic disease and its impact on drug and disability benefits.