Collections > Electronic Theses and Dissertations > Process evaluation of a behavioral weight loss intervention for low-income, mid-life women in local health departments: the Weight-Wise II Program
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Few studies have examined the translation of evidence based weight loss interventions into public health settings. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the process of implementation and public health impact of the Weight-Wise II Program. In aim 1, we conducted a process evaluation of the Weight-Wise II Program in 6 local health departments. Measures of participant enactment and program acceptability were associated with weight loss: group session attendance (p<.0001), frequency of maintaining food and fitness diaries (p<.0001), and program satisfaction (p=.05). In addition, we developed checklists to measure the content, quality and accuracy of program content delivery. The results of this study suggest that staff found acceptable the implementation of an intensive behavioral weight loss program in health departments and low-income, mid-life women actively engaged in a weight loss program offered through their local health department. In aim 2, we assessed the public health impact using the RE-AIM framework. We created summary indices to compare the program across sites. Results indicate that there were some differences in implementation (e.g. quality and comprehensiveness of delivery and group session duration) between interventionists with previous weight management experience compared to those without. In Aim 3, we assessed North Carolina local health department (n=55) capacity to implement intensive behavioral weight loss programs. Although we found that health departments have the staff who typically deliver behavioral weight loss programs, there is more to learn regarding health department's capacity to deliver such programs. The results of this dissertation suggest that an intensive behavioral weight loss program can be successfully implemented in local health departments and comprehensively evaluated.