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Developing Local Board of Health Guidelines to Promote Healthy Food Access — King County, Washington, 2010–2012
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  • Alternative Title:
    Prev Chronic Dis
  • Description:
    Policies that change environments are important tools for preventing chronic diseases, including obesity. Boards of health often have authority to adopt such policies, but few do so. This study assesses 1) how one local board of health developed a policy approach for healthy food access through vending machine guidelines (rather than regulations) and 2) the impact of the approach. Using a case study design guided by "three streams" policy theory and RE-AIM, we analyzed data from a focus group, interviews, and policy documents. The guidelines effectively supported institutional policy development in several settings. Recognition of the problem of chronic disease and the policy solution of vending machine guidelines created an opening for the board to influence nutrition environments. Institutions identified a need for support in adopting vending machine policies. Communities could benefit from the study board's approach to using nonregulatory evidence-based guidelines as a policy tool.
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