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Akron Mercy Medical Clinic to Participate in Rural Weight Management Study

Feb 21, 2016 04:44PM ● By MED Magazine

Selected patients of the Akron Mercy Medical Clinic in Akron, Iowa will help researchers to 

 further their understanding of obesity in rural areas - and maybe pick up some healthy habits in the process. They will be a part of RE-POWER, a collaborative multi-site research study comparing three different models to treat obesity in primary care practices throughout the Midwest.


Led by researchers at the University of Kansas Medical Center, research partners include the University of Nebraska Medical Center and the Marshfield Clinic in Wisconsin.

Akron Mercy Medical Clinic is one of 19 practices in Kansas, 1 in Iowa, 6 in Nebraska, and 10 in Wisconsin participating in the study over a 36-month period.


“We wanted to be a part of RE-POWER because obesity is a serious problem that affects our patients every day,” says Cindie Wolff, MD, a family practice physician at Akron Mercy Medical Clinic. “Studies like these give our patients practical tools to lose weight and keep it off, and we hope the data gathered gives family doctors insight on best approaches for rural residents.”


Nearly 20 percent of the US population lives in rural communities, and individuals from rural areas have higher rates of obesity and obesity-related illnesses than individuals in urban areas. This study will test three different approaches to weight management, following either an individual or group counseling format. Participants in all three groups will be instructed on diet, exercise and behavioral changes that provide sustained weight loss.