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Hyatt Hotels, Kaiser Permanente Headline New Commitments Announced at PHA Summit to Help End Childhood Obesity Epidemic

ChildObesity180 announces new initiative to reach 9 million kids in 2012

WASHINGTON, DC (November 29, 2011) – Hyatt Hotels Corporation and Kaiser Permanente announced new commitments with the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) at the Building a Healthier Future Summit today, all focused on ending the childhood obesity epidemic. PHA works with the private sector and its honorary chairwoman First Lady Michelle Obama to solve the nation’s childhood obesity crisis and is hosting the Summit.

Hyatt Hotels is enhancing the nutritional profile of its children’s and full menus across all of its dining offerings – from poolside dining to catering to restaurants – for its 24 million guests annually by adding healthier options.

Kaiser Permanente will institute new guidelines in all 29 of its hospitals that offer maternal and child health services to help make breastfeeding a priority for each child born in one of their hospitals.

Additionally, The Fresh Grocer, a Philadelphia-area grocer, announced its commitment with PHA today, to build five grocery stores in or around areas where people lack access to healthy, affordable foods. Fresh Grocer’s five new stores will be located in the mid-Atlantic and serve approximately 795,000 people and create approximately 1,000 jobs. This announcement builds on the commitments highlighted in the July 20, 2011 East Wing event where several companies committed to similar expansions.

The summaries of the commitments follow, but it is important to note that both of these commitments are focused on adding options and information to help American families have a healthy lifestyle. Healthier options and price reductions at Hyatt Hotels help travelling Americans who are frequently challenged to eat healthy while on the road. Hyatt Hotel’s offering of these healthy items will supplement menu items that include indulgences, which will continue to be offered. Kaiser Permanente will institute new policies and procedures aimed at increasing the number of children who are breastfed, but its doctors know that breastfeeding is not a viable alternative for all mothers and babies.

“The Summit was created to provide a unique opportunity where business and industry leaders can sit with their nonprofit, academic and government counterparts and address the paramount issue affecting children’s health today—childhood obesity,” said the Partnership’s CEO Larry Soler. “This Summit is about action, not talk; and the leadership shown by Hyatt, Kaiser Permanente Hospitals and The Fresh Grocer clearly demonstrate what is possible when the private industry acts to help make the healthy choice the easy choice for all Americans.”

The summit also features an announcement by ChildObesity180, an alliance of senior-level national leaders from relevant sectors – public, private, academic, and nonprofit – that have aligned to reverse the trend of childhood obesity. The first initiative of ChildObesity180, Healthy Kids Out of School worked with leading out-of-school-time (OST) organizations to develop three unified principles for nutrition and physical activity. The principles recommend serving water as the primary beverage; fruits and vegetables as the primary snack; and increasing opportunities for physical activity. The Healthy Kids Out of School initiative will also develop a comprehensive implementation plan to connect OST organizations with the local resources needed to help adopt the principles.

Participating organizations in this unprecedented partnership include Boy Scouts of America, National 4-H Council, Girl Scouts of the USA, National Council of La Raza, National Council of Youth Sports, National Urban League, Pop Warner, US Youth Soccer, and YMCA of the USA. Collectively, these organizations have the potential to reach tens of millions of children annually.

Soler added, “This summit is about celebrating efforts across the board. PHA knows well that we can’t do this on our own and we’ve hosted this summit specifically to help bring others to the table. We were honored to be able to have CO180 announce this exciting commitment at the summit.”

Specifically Hyatt Hotels is making the following commitments:

Changes to menus will be implemented at all restaurants managed by full-service Hyatt hotels and resorts in the U.S. and Canada as well as on menus for room service, catering, bars, lounges and pools. Menu changes include the following:

Children’s Menus – changes starting now and to be fully implemented by the end of November 2012

  • Offer a fruit or vegetable as the default side item with all children’s meals;

  • Make 8 oz. servings of nonfat or low-fat milk available with free refills. Promote milk or water prominently on the menu with other beverage options displayed less prominently;

  • Offer at least one children’s menu meal option that meets the MyPlate federal guidance: one to two servings of fruit and vegetables, a whole grain serving, a lean protein serving, and a low fat dairy (or dairy substitute) serving, which together have a nutrient composition equal to or less than 600 calories, 30 percent of total calories from fat, 10 percent total calories from saturated fat, 600 mg of sodium, and no more than 10 grams added sugar. Position and feature that meal as the first on the children’s menus;

  • Ensure any food illustrations on children’s menus depict nutritious options, including milk or water as the beverage of choice if beverages are depicted.

General Menus

  • By 2016, reduce the calorie footprint, sodium content and added sugar content by at least 10 percent across all food menus, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of U.S. Hyatt properties meeting this standard within three years;

  • At least two healthy menu meal options will be equivalent to or lower in price than less healthy menu meal options. This pricing parity will appear on all menus by 2016, with an endeavor to have at least 50 percent of menus reflecting this change within three years.

  • At least five menu items for each meal on Hotel menus will contain a locally produced food products or ingredient.

“We are honored and humbled to be recognized for our efforts to create healthier options for children at our hotels across the country,” said Chuck Floyd, Chief Operating Officer, North America at Hyatt. “We frequently hear from our guests that it’s quite difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle while on the road. We are committed to changing that, and by working with PHA, it gives us the momentum we need and moves us another step closer toward making a positive impact on the guests that we serve every day.”

Every company that works with PHA is required to agree that PHA will monitor and report on progress toward their commitment. Hyatt has agreed to allow PHA to provide annual progress reports and to facilitate the measuring and monitoring of each established benchmark regarding its commitment.

Specifically Kaiser Permanente is making the following commitments:

  • By January 1, 2013, all of Kaiser Permanente’s 29 hospitals that offer maternal and child health services will be designated as Baby-Friendly, and/or participate in the Joint Commission’s Perinatal Core Measures program, which requires participating hospitals to report their rates of exclusive breastfeeding at discharge.

  • Kaiser Permanente will establish a system-wide performance improvement program focusing on the development and implementation of evidence-based hospital breastfeeding practices.

  • Kaiser Permanente will develop and make publicly available a hospital breastfeeding practices guide that documents lessons learned and operational strategies that other systems can use to improve maternity care.

  • To ensure accountability, Kaiser Permanente will include rates of exclusive breastfeeding at discharge as a core quality measure on its Quality Dashboard, which will be reviewed on a quarterly basis along with other hospital quality measures.

“At Kaiser Permanente, we are committed to giving every baby the healthiest start possible,” said Edward Ellison, MD, executive medical director-elect, Kaiser Permanente Southern California region. “We believe in making the healthy choice the easy choice for mothers and families, so we are striving to support breastfeeding in our hospitals. We also promote and support breastfeeding as a key component of our comprehensive strategy to prevent childhood obesity.”

Every company that works with PHA is required to agree that PHA will monitor and report on progress toward their commitment. Kaiser Permanente has agreed to provide information outlining its progress in meeting its goals. Specifically, independent verification of information will occur through the highly respected Joint Commission and/or Baby Friendly USA organizations.

Specifically The Fresh Grocer is making the following commitments:

The Fresh Grocer will build five (5) grocery stores in or around areas in communities that lack access to healthy affordable foods. These stores will sell a variety of fresh fruit, vegetables, fish, meat and dairy products and will be similar in size and scope to The Fresh Grocer stores in operation in 2011. The new stores will open by 2016.“We are excited to join the Partnership for a Healthier America as a partner to fight childhood obesity,” said Patrick J. Burns, President & CEO of The Fresh Grocer. “By opening five new stores over the next five years in areas in and around food deserts, we will give close to 800,000 people throughout the Mid-Atlantic Region access to fresh, healthy, affordable food.”Every company that works with PHA is required to participate in an evaluation, and The Fresh Grocer has agreed to undergo an evaluation process with PHA that will be released to the public annually.

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