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O'Connor Hospital Improves Community Health with Exercise

To reduce obesity in Delaware County, O'Connor Hospital of Bassett Healthcare Network collaborated with the local health department, three additional county hospitals, and the local Cooperative Extension office to create "Get Out and Walk", an initiative that uses the three Ps for an effective population health intervention—programs, projects, and policies—to address the hospital's Community Service Plan. Programs include Prescription Trails and a 1,000 Mile Challenge. Projects include the marking, mapping, and promoting of walking routes and hiking trails; encouraging municipalities and large employers to adopt Complete Street practices and policies; and the promotion of Complete Street projects. Information and resources for all the projects, programs, and policies are hosted on the GetOutAndWalk.org website.

Since the beginning of the program in 2013, three municipalities have passed Complete Street policies in Delaware County. More than 600 community members registered to participate in the 1,000 Mile Challenge in 2015. One municipality and one school system opened their adjoining property for public use. Four miles of hiking trails were built, and trail use is tracked by a counter and sign-in box.