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PHR News: Surgeon General’s Perspectives – Making Our Communities Walkable for Older Adults

In the latest issue of Public Health Reports, September/October 2015, US Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy reflects on the importance of walking for people of all ages, especially for older adults. At the recent White House Conference on Aging, a listening session with experts on aging, health care, and housing confirmed what we’ve long known: Keeping physically active is one of the best things we can do to help reduce aging-associated health risks, including early death, cancer, cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline, depression, diabetes, falls, and stroke. Physical activity can reduce pain and improve function for those with arthritis and other chronic conditions. Also, regular walking—whether around the neighborhood, at the gym, or in a mall—can help older adults maintain social ties and avoid social isolation. Many communities around the country are taking creative approaches to encouraging walking and are partnering with citizens, businesses, churches, health professionals, and others to increase walking opportunities for older adults. As America’s doctor, Dr. Murthy encourages everyone, regardless of age, to make walking a regular part of their lives. Click here to read the full article.


The official journal of the U.S. Public Health Service and the U.S. Surgeon General since 1878, PHR serves as an informative and accessible resource for practitioners, professors, scholars, and students of public health. Published in collaboration with the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH), the bi-monthly, peer-reviewed journal provides important research and presents key discussions on the major issues confronting the public health community. For full access to current content, visit the Public Health Reports website to subscribe.