Category Archives: Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS)

A Battle that Takes Place Every Day

Posted by: Audiegrl
Written by Dr. Jill Biden

Lorene Nelson, Dr. Biden, Joy Foster and Tina Tchen after the call in Dr. Bidens office October 15, 2010. (by Chris Smith - HHS)

Today I had the pleasure of co-hosting a conference call with Kathleen Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to highlight Breast Cancer Awareness Month and to emphasize the importance of early detection and regular screenings.

We were joined on the call by breast cancer survivors, advocates, and various women’s group from across the country. I was especially honored to have two breast cancer survivors, Joy Veronica Foster and Lorene Nelson, join me in my office so they could share their personal stories on the call. Listening to these women, and knowing we were joined by many others on the line was truly inspirational and heartwarming.

Chances are that anyone reading this post has been touched by breast cancer –

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but the battle against breast cancer takes place every day, every hour, every 69 seconds as someone’s mother, sister, daughter, and friend loses her life to breast cancer. We still have a lot of work ahead of us, but today’s conference call gave me hope. With the ongoing commitment of the Obama-Biden Administration to ensure that affordable and accessible preventive care is a reality, and the many breast cancer advocates, and survivors like Lorene and Joy who are changing lives with their work every day – I know we are moving closer to a breast cancer-free world.

-Jill

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Filed under Breast Cancer Awareness, Dr. Jill Biden, Health, Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS), Women's Issues

West Wing Week ~ Mailbag Day Summer Edition ~ August 6 – August 13, 2010

Posted by: Audiegrl

President Barack Obama signs Elena Kagan's commission in the Oval Office, before a reception in the East Room celebrating her confirmation to the Supreme Court, Aug. 6, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)


Mailbag Day! This West Wing Week the administration responds to the letters and emails sent in by you. Find out whether the President gets stamps in his passport, learn about pre-existing conditions and the Affordable Care Act from Secretary of Health and Human Services, Katleen Sebelius, and see who gets to keep the President’s bill signing pens.

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President Barack Obama greets Lt. Col. Dave Kalinske and his family in the Oval Office, during Kalinske’s departure ceremony, Aug. 13, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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Filed under First Lady Michelle Obama, Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS), Pres. Barack Obama, Uncategorized, West Wing Week

First Lady Michelle Obama Announces Let’s Move Campaign’s Childhood Obesity Guidelines

Posted by: Audiegrl

First Lady Michelle Obama speaks at an event at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, Tuesday, May 11, 2010, in Washington, to discuss the findings of the Childhood Obesity Task Force report. In February, Mrs. Obama launched the Let's Move, a campaign to solve the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation. (Photos ObamaFoodorama and AP/Carolyn Kaster)

AP~Women could help reduce childhood obesity by maintaining a healthy weight when they become pregnant and by breast-feeding their babies, a government panel has found.

The suggestions were among 70 recommendations in the panel’s report. First lady Michelle Obama released the findings Tuesday as part of her campaign against childhood obesity.

“For the first time, the nation will have goals, benchmarks and measureable outcomes that will help us tackle the childhood obesity epidemic one child, one family and one community at a time,” Mrs. Obama said. “We want to marshal every resource – public and private sector, mayors and governors, parents and educators, business owners and health care providers, coaches and athletes – to ensure that we are providing each and every child the happy, healthy future they deserve.”

One in 3 American children is overweight or obese, putting them at higher risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and other illnesses. Obesity is even more prevalent among black and Hispanic children. Some public health experts say today’s children are on track to live shorter lives than their parents.

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First Lady Michelle Obama’s remarks

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Take a Look at Our Action Plan to Solve the Problem of Childhood Obesity

Written by Melody Barnes

Let's Move!Today, the Childhood Obesity Task Force is excited to release our action plan to solve the problem of childhood obesity within a generation.

The report reflects input from 12 federal agencies as well as the 2,500 submissions we got from parents, teachers, doctors, nurses and others. It includes 70 recommendations for public and private sector action, as well as concrete metrics and benchmarks to measure our progress towards our goal. Very broadly, the report makes recommendations in 5 key areas:

  1. Getting children a healthy start on life, with good prenatal care for their parents; support for breastfeeding; limits on “screen time”; and quality child care settings with nutritious food and ample opportunity for young children to be physically active.
  2. Empowering parents and caregivers with simpler, more actionable messages about nutritional choices based on the latest Dietary Guidelines for Americans; improved labels on food and menus that provide clear information to help make healthy choices for children; reduced marketing of unhealthy products to children; and improved health care services, including BMI measurement for all children.
  3. Providing healthy food in schools, through improvements in federally-supported school lunches and breakfasts; upgrading the nutritional quality of other foods sold in schools; and improving nutrition education and the overall school environment.
  4. Improving access to healthy, affordable food, by eliminating “food deserts” in urban and rural America; lowering the relative prices of healthier foods; developing or reformulating food products to be healthier; and reducing the incidence of hunger, which has been linked to obesity.
  5. Getting children more physically active, through quality physical education, recess, and other opportunities in and after school; addressing aspects of the “built environment” that make it difficult for children to walk or bike safely in their communities; and improving access to safe parks, playgrounds, and indoor and outdoor recreational facilities.

Many of our ideas can be implemented right away, at little or no cost. With the First Lady’s leadership and working in strong partnership with states, local communities, and the private sector, we look forward to moving without delay to get this plan into action. Let’s Move!

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Filed under Change, Childhood Obesity, Children, First Lady Michelle Obama, Health, Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS), Secretary Arne Duncan (Sec of Education), Uncategorized

First Lady Michelle Holds White House Spring Garden Planting Event

Posted by: Audiegrl

First Lady Michelle Obama (R) plants seedlings with schoolchildren from Bancroft and Hollin Meadows Elementary Schools and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (2nd L) during the annual Spring Garden Planting event held in the White House Kitchen Garden March 31, 2010 in Washington, DC. Mrs. Obama sponsors the event to teach children the importance of eating healthy foods and to encourage children to spend time outdoors. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images North America)

The First Lady hosted the Spring Garden Planting in the White House Kitchen Garden, where she was joined by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, as well as the President of the National Gardening Association. Students from Bancroft and Hollin Meadows Elementary Schools also participated. Enjoy the video and the pics!

Full transcript of the First Lady’s remarks
Photo credits: Getty, Reuters and AP

Note: For more fun foodie coverage and photos, please check out our friends at ObamaFoodorama who were at the event: The Rhubarb Dance & Other Tales From The Spring Planting Of The Kitchen Garden

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First Lady Michelle Obama Unveils Let’s Move…A Nationwide Campaign to Combat Childhood Obesity

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President Obama Signs Childhood Obesity Memorandum

President Barack Obama signs the memorandum on childhood obesity, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2010, in the Oval Office of the White House,Washington. Standing, from left are, Education Secretary Arne Duncan, Health and Human Secretary Services Kathleen Sebelius, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, First Lady Michelle Obama, and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.

On Tuesday, First Lady Michelle Obama unveiled her nationwide anti-childhood obesity initiative. President Obama signed a Memorandum on Childhood Obesity with the First Lady proudly standing by his side.

Mrs. Obama’s East Wing said she will be “joined by members of the president’s cabinet, as well as media, sports, entertainment, and business leaders,” plus mayors, member of the medical community and others at the White House event. Her press office has confirmed the following attendees:

  • Mayors Chip Johnson of Hernando, Mississippi, and Joseph Curtatone of Somerville, Massachusetts, who are leading efforts in their communities to reduce childhood obesity
  • Dr. Judith Palfrey, President of the American Academy of Pediatrics
  • Will Allen from Milwaukee, WI, who is a leader in the effort to bring fresh produce to inner cities and urban areas
  • Local students, including a student from DC’s Bancroft elementary school, and members of the 2009 national championship pee-wee football team—Watkins Hornets
  • Tiki Barber, NBC correspondent and former NFL football player

“Over the past three decades, childhood obesity rates in America have tripled; nearly one third of children in America are now overweight or obese,” the East Wing said in a statement. “The First Lady will announce the elements of the nationwide campaign, which will put us on track to solve the problem of childhood obesity in a generation.”

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First Lady Michelle Obama hugs student Tammy Nguyen in the Red Room of the White House before an event announcing a campaign to combat the rapidly growing problem of childhood obesity while Tiki Barber checks his notes before they take the stage, Feb. 9, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Samantha Appleton)

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First Lady Michelle Obama’s PSA for Let’s Move
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Let's Move

Click to visit Let's Move

Childhood obesity or excess weight threatens the healthy future of one third of American children. We spend $150 billion every year to treat obesity-related conditions, and that number is growing.

Obesity rates tripled in the past 30 years, a trend that means, for the first time in our history, American children may face a shorter expected lifespan than their parents.

We need to get moving. Join First Lady Michelle Obama, community leaders, teachers, doctors, nurses, moms and dads in a nationwide campaign to tackle the challenge of childhood obesity.

Let’s Move! has an ambitious but important goal: to solve the epidemic of childhood obesity within a generation.

Let’s Move will give parents the support they need, provide healthier food in schools, help our kids to be more physically active, and make healthy, affordable food available in every part of our country.

On Tuesday morning, Mrs. Obama sat down with Robin Roberts on Good Morning America, and in the evening with CNN’s Larry King to discuss her childhood obesity initiative Let’s Move Here’s are some excerpts of the those interviews:

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Filed under Barack Obama, Change, Childhood Obesity, Children, Culture, Facebook, First Daughters, First Lady Michelle Obama, Government, Health, History, Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS), Live Stream Video, Media and Entertainment, News, Obama Administration, Politics, Pop Culture, Presidents, Secretary Arne Duncan (Sec of Education), Secretary Kenneth L. Salazar (Sec of Interior), Students, Technology, Video/YouTube, Women's Issues

First Lady Michelle Meets with Members of Congress and Cabinet Secretaries

Posted by: Audiegrl

US First Lady Michelle Obama (C) seated alongside Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (L) and Democratic Senator Tom Harkin (R) of Iowa

US First Lady Michelle Obama (C) seated alongside Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (L) and Democratic Senator Tom Harkin (R) of Iowa

First Lady Michelle Obama met today with Members of Congress and Cabinet Secretaries in the Old Family Dining Room of the White House. Discussing her childhood obesity initiative and steps that families, schools and communities can take to fight it.


First Lady Michelle Obama: “I want to begin just by thanking you all for taking the time to come and join us today.

As you are probably now more than aware, we’re in the process of launching a nationwide effort to dealing with the obesity epidemic in this country. And as you’ve seen, as I’ve been out there, as a parent, this is an issue that I care deeply about and I’ve spoken about in a very personal level. But I’ve learned that there are many parents around this country who are struggling with this issue, who are concerned about it and are looking for ways to help.

But one of the good news — pieces about this challenge is that this problem is imminently solvable, and that’s the good news. But it’s going to require us working together — not just the administration, but Congress, governors, mayors, parents, teachers. Anyone who has access to children in their lives is going to have to work together. And one of the things that’s also very clear is that this problem won’t be solved by any single federal solution. This is going to require national action.

So I’m very excited about the conversation that we’re going to have. The initiative that’s going to launch is really going to look at four key areas. And I talked about these before, but we’re going to try to increase the number of healthy schools in this country. We’re going to work hard to increase the level of regular physical activity that kids are getting in this country. One of the tougher challenges that we need to look at is improving the accessibility and affordability of foods because there are many food deserts in this nation, which makes it difficult for families trying to access good options. And we also want to do more to empower consumers to make better choices in their own lives.

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Filed under Barack Obama, Cabinet, Childhood Obesity, Children, Culture, Democrats, Education, First Lady Michelle Obama, Government, Health, Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS), Media and Entertainment, News, Obama Administration, Politics, Presidents, Senate, Students, Women's Issues

It’s National Influenza Vaccination Week!

Posted by: Audiegrl

This past weekend, President Obama issued a proclamation identifying the week of January 10-16, 2010, as National Influenza Vaccination Week. He encouraged Americans to observe the week by getting the H1N1 flu vaccine, if they have not yet done so, and by asking their families, friends, and co-workers to do the same. Here’s an excerpt from the proclamation:


Every American has a role to play in fighting the H1N1 flu. Expectant mothers, children, young adults, and all those under the age of 65 with chronic health conditions are at high risk for H1N1 flu-related complications and should get the vaccine as soon as possible. Those not at high risk can protect themselves and prevent the virus from spreading to more vulnerable members of their families and communities by getting vaccinated as well.

This week presents a window of opportunity for us to prevent a possible third wave of H1N1 flu in the United States. I strongly encourage those who have not yet received the H1N1 flu vaccine to do so. Visit flu.gov to find vaccination sites in communities across our country and to stay informed. Together, we can all fight the H1N1 flu and help protect our families, friends, and neighbors.

Read the full proclamation.

In support of National Influenza Vaccination Week, there are a number of national and regional vaccination activities happening this week, including: school-based H1N1 vaccination clinics in Alabama; a day-long vaccination event for the Navajo Division of Health employees in Arizona; a “Spread the Word, Not the Flu” media campaign in Florida; Medical Reserve Corps volunteers coordinating with local health departments, town emergency planners, local police, and emergency medical technicians to provide vaccinations in Massachusetts; free immunizations for children without health insurance in Washington; and a live appearance by the ‘Flu Bug’ at a vaccination clinic in Wyoming.

With so many ongoing activities, it is easy to get involved. Read the blog post from HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for additional details about National Influenza Vaccination Week and visit Flu.gov to locate a vaccination clinic in your area, learn more about this week’s events, or list your community event.

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Filed under Barack Obama, H1N1/Swine Flu, Health, Kathleen Sebelius (Sec of HHS), Media and Entertainment, Medicine, Obama Administration, Pres. Barack Obama, Presidents, Uncategorized