Childhood Obesity

In 2010 and 2017, the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force recommended that providers screen children aged 6 years or older for obesity and provide referrals to intensive lifestyle modification programs for children with obesity. Despite this recommendation and access to insurance coverage for evidence-based prevention, treatment services continue to be limited, particularly for low-income children.

Through CDC funding, Illinois Primary Health Care Association (IPHCA) has partnered with the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) and Healthy Weight Partnership (HWP) on the Childhood Obesity Management with Mind, Exercise, Nutrition….Do It! (MEND) Implementation Teams (COMMIT) grant. This project focuses on risk behaviors of children aged 7-13 years with obesity (BMI ≥ 95th percentile) or overweight (BMI ≥ 85th percentile) to meet the Quadruple Aim goals of improved health outcomes, improved patient experience, improved staff experience, and reduced costs.

MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition….Do It!) 7-13 is a comprehensive, family-based Program that helps overweight children aged 7-13 to improve their health, fitness and self-esteem. MEND 7-13 is a 20-session family Program that meets for two hours twice a week and is attended by the child and at least one parent or caregiver. The first hour is an interactive family session on nutrition and behavior topics, followed by one hour of fun exercise for the children while the parents/caregivers meet for support and discussion on topics such as goals and rewards, label reading and problem solving. For more information on this program, please visit

If your health center is interested in participating in the COMMIT – MEND program please contact Greci Rodriguez at or (312) 692-3016. More Information»


IPHCA Springfield Office
500 S. Ninth St., Springfield, IL 62701
(217) 541-7300

IPHCA Chicago Office

542 S. Dearborn St., Suite 300, Chicago, IL  60605
(312) 692-3000