Officials discuss ways to improve health in Virginia - Roanoke Times: Virginia

Officials discuss ways to improve health in Virginia

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Posted: Wednesday, July 23, 2014 8:00 pm

CHARLOTTESVILLE — Pulling junk food from state office vending machines and increasing access to recreational facilities in schools and public buildings could be among proposals to boost health in Virginia, officials said Wednesday at a state Department of Health conference.

“Clearly, we have the opportunity to improve the health of our citizens through policies and laws,” state Health and Human Services Secretary Bill Hazel said during the daylong session at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

The event drew health officials, lobbyists, medical industry executives and community leaders. The ideas included implementing new policies, passing new laws and bringing together representatives of localities, businesses and others.

Making sure policies are appropriate and communicated properly is imperative, Hazel said.

“It’s about having better access, having trained professionals available, knowing what works and what doesn’t,” he said.

Policies should be reviewed to determine what succeeds and why, Hazel said.

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