Snyder: BMI tracking in children is voluntary, anonymous
Gov. Rick Snyder laid out a wide-ranging health care agenda in Grand Rapids Sept. 14 that includes tracking body mass index of Michigan’s children using an existing database that keeps tabs on immunizations.
Some critics have likened the idea to the ‘obesity police.’
Here’s how he answered criticism after visiting AnnArbor.com for an editorial board meeting Monday.
Snyder said providing the information will be voluntary rather than mandatory. He added that the personal data is not attached to children’s obesity statistics.
“What it does is create an environment for a health care professional to have a great discussion with the child and the parent on a confidential basis,” he said.
In Michigan, the 8th fattest state, about 12 percent, or 800,000 Michigan children, are obese or overweight, according to the Associated Press. BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight.
View Snyder’s full response in the video below. Then take our poll and leave a comment below. Is tracking childhood obesity a good idea? Once we have the data, how can we use it to improve public health?