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Santa Clara County, CA – Dr. Antonia Charles has been named a Local Hero by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), Council on Community Pediatrics. The award recognizes pediatricians who lead community action and advocacy for children in their communities. Dr. Charles is one of two pediatricians in the United States to receive this year’s award.
Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children in the last 30 years. The percentage of children aged 6 – 11 years in the United States who were obese increased from 7% in 1980 to just over 17% in 2012. While rates remain stable at around 17%, childhood obesity remains a concern because it has both immediate and long-term effects on health and well-being.
Dr. Charles, director of the Pediatric Healthy Lifestyle Center (PHLC) at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, has extensive experience working with families to prevent disease by adopting healthy habits for life. PHLC is a lifestyle medicine clinic that helps children and their families make changes in their home environment. Dr. Charles leads a team of medical professionals who work with children and their families to educate, support and encourage them throughout the lifestyle change process. The focus is improving health by establishing healthy eating practices, an active lifestyle and fostering a healthy relationship with food.
Prior to serving as director of the PHLC, Dr. Charles was a primary care pediatrician for 13 years at Valley Health Center East Valley. She is passionate about her work and shares her knowledge about healthy eating practices, creating a healthy home environment and the importance of daily physical activity.
The award was presented on October 22 at AAP’s 2016 National Conference in San Francisco, CA. The 2016 American Academy of Pediatrics awards honor 14 physicians in 13 categories including the Local Hero Award, Founders Award and Pediatric Practice Manager Award. The conference focuses on developing, maintaining and improving the competence, skills and professional performance of pediatricians and pediatric healthcare professionals. The American Medical Association (master data file 2011) lists over 91,000 physicians in the US who identified themselves as a pediatrician, pediatric medical subspecialist, pediatric surgical specialist, or other pediatric-focused physician.
About the Pediatric Healthy Lifestyle Center
The Pediatric Healthy Lifestyle Center specifically focuses on pediatric patients who have been identified by their primary care provider with obesity or obesity related illnesses, such as diabetes, pre-diabetes, high blood pressure, and cholesterol abnormalities.