The Green Prescription (GRx) Active Families programme has grown out of the nationwide GRx initiative for adults, responding to requests from primary care for something similar for children and young people. There are 15 contract holders throughout NZ.
There must be commitment from the family for involvement in the programme and a willingness to improve their nutrition and increase physical activity.
Criteria for admittance to the programme is an inactive child with a BMI of over 25. 1439 children from 1250 familes were referred to the programme during 2015/16, mainly referred by GPs and paediatricians. Families are able to refer themselves to the programme
This is the ninth annual survey, the seventh conducted on behalf of the Ministry, the others conducted by SPARC before the transfer of GRx to the Ministry in July 2009. The questionnaire is distributed to programme participants approximately six months after entry into the programme.
Main survey points are:
- 83 % of participants are more active since receiving their GRx and 69% have encouraged other family members to get more active
- 87% of families have made changes to their diets, mainly less sugary food and drink, eating fewer takeaways, more fruit and vegetables
- 97 % are now more aware of and understand the benefits of physical activity
- 88% of participants have noticed health changes including: willingness to try new activities, more energy and confidence, weight loss and less medication.
Satisfaction with the service (activity and nutrition sessions and home visits) is very high at 96 %, with comments such as:
‘It has been life changing for our daughter and our family. Thank you’.
‘Excellent for our whanau and our community’.
‘Gives great advice and tips without making us feel bad about getting into our situation in the first place. Very encouraging’.