Focus on long-term and short-term objectives to use in public health program planning

group of Native Hawaiians was discouraged when they noticed a high obesity rate in their population. While the community had tried commercial weight-loss programs in the past, the community as a whole was unsuccessful at maintaining weight loss. As a group, they gathered together and decided to request help from their health care system, which in turn developed a program tailored for their culture (Gellert et al., 2010). They established their mission as decreasing their chronic disease risk, and they identified the goals of changing lifestyle behavior with social support, group support, and community involvement. The community then chose a planning model and assessed the needs and resources of the group. They developed short-term objectives of recruiting participants and conducting 12 weekly classes. Their stated long-term objectives were to help participants maintain healthy habits for 1 year. Strategies were to post flyers, organize support groups, and develop classes to be taught by health educators. At the end of their 3-month pilot, they experienced a 30% greater loss in weight than they had with the commercial programs that had been tried earlier.

As seen in this case study, setting goals and objectives is critical to the success in planning for any public health program. Goals define the overarching mission of the program, while the objectives are specific, measurable outcomes needed to meet those goals.

For this Discussion, you focus on long-term and short-term objectives to use in public health program planning.

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To Prepare for this Discussion:

  • Review Chapter 6 in the McKenzie et al. text. Consider the importance of long- and short-term objectives in planning public health programs.
  • Think about your own experience creating objectives to meet personal or professional goals.
  • Consider how you might create and apply long-term and short-term objectives in planning for your own public health program.

With these thoughts in mind:

By Day 4

Post a brief description of experiences you have had creating long-term and short-term objectives in your own life. Explain the importance of each type of objective and how it helped you reach goals. Finally, explain how you might use long-term and short-term objectives in planning your public health program. Support your responses using the Learning Resources and current literature.

Note: Initial postings must be 250–350 words (not including references).