Sanford Health and WebMD announce partnership

Sanford Health, the largest not-for-profit rural healthcare provider in the United States, and WebMD Health Corp. (Nasdaq: WBMD), the leading source of health information, today announced an educational collaboration on children’s health, nutrition and fitness. The partnership’s online destinations will provide parents, children and healthcare professionals with personalized resources and support to help promote and maintain a healthy and fit lifestyle for children.

“Together with WebMD’s trusted brand of health information, we will deliver comprehensive new and fun resources to children on the importance of being fit and living a healthy lifestyle,” said David Link, Senior Executive Vice President, Sanford Health. “WebMD offers expanded reach to parents, healthcare professionals and educators, providing them with the additional support needed to promote daily, healthy living habits for children.”

Childhood obesity and inactivity are increasingly prevalent health risks for children in the United States. According to the CDC, overweight and obese children are more likely to have risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease, including type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. In fact, one study found that 70% of obese children had at least one cardiovascular disease risk and 39% of obese children had two or more. The joint initiative between Sanford Health and WebMD will help address this issue with credible and engaging resources to support families and healthcare providers in promoting healthy nutrition and exercise behaviors to children.

“This unique partnership with Sanford Health will provide parents, children, educators and healthcare professionals with a new educational experience aimed at helping to reduce childhood obesity and inactivity and prevent type 2 diabetes,” said Steve Zatz, M.D., Executive Vice President, WebMD. “The information will be delivered online directly to those who need it, empowering people to take action.”

The educational resources are planned for launch in 2011.

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