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Childhood Obesity in Washtenaw County

Childhood overweight and obesity map 2014

The Washtenaw childhood obesity surveillance project began in 2013. Through the Health Improvement Plan (HIP) collaborative, Washtenaw County Public Health worked with St. Joseph Mercy Health System and the University of Michigan Health System to create the Washtenaw Child BMI Dataset. In the first year, both health systems contributed measured height and weight data from electronic health records for over 18,000 children, ages 2 - 17 years old, living in Washtenaw County. In 2014 and 2015, the health systems contributed records from over 31,000 children each year, covering nearly 50% of children in Washtenaw County.

Washtenaw County Public Health compiled and analyzed the data in order to create community data reports. Each new year of data will allow us to track progress of initiatives aimed at moving all children to a healthier weight.

The Washtenaw County Childhood Overweight and Obesity (2015) data report provides information to identify factors that put local children at risk of being overweight or obese. Detailed BMI category charts identify factors that increase risk of a child being underweight, as well as overweight or obese.

Highlights from 2015

      • Good news: Compared to 2013, the overweight and obesity rate in Washtenaw County children decreased in 2015.
        • The overweight and obesity rates for children in Ypsilanti and Milan decreased between 2013 and 2015.
        • The overweight and obesity rate in adolescents aged 11 to 13 years has decreased significantly between 2013 and 2015 (31% in 2013 and 28% in 2015).
        • Compared to 2013, the overweight and obesity rate in African American teens has improved in 2015.
      • Opportunity to improve: The rate in Hispanic or Latino children increased from 31% in 2013 to 34% in 2015.

Childhood obesity community data reports

Brief reports for children in several communities in Washtenaw County have been prepared in order to identify populations who are at risk of being overweight or obese at a more local level.

Detailed BMI category charts

These charts contain more comprehensive information on rates of underweight and healthy weight, as well as overweight and obesity, for children in Washtenaw County.

By geographic area

By race or ethnic group

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is an additional valuable resource for information on childhood obesity risk and prevention measures.

For more information about the dataset or the reports, please email Kelly McCarthy, Maternal and Child Health Epidemiologist.

For a more information on obesity prevention programs to help facilitate collaboration, identify gaps, and assist with needs assessment and program planning see the Directory of Obesity Prevention Programs.


Please cite these community reports as

Washtenaw County Childhood BMI Profile for [insert community]’.  Washtenaw County Public Health.  Secondary Analysis of Electronic Medical Record Data.  University of Michigan and Saint Joseph Mercy Hospital Datasets.  Ann Arbor, Michigan.  January [YEAR] – December [YEAR].  Published [SEE FOOTNOTE IN DOCUMENT].

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