Carlisle, PA – Why are doctors in Philadelphia prescribing time in parks to urban children? Why is a world-class athlete in Wyoming focused on taking those addicted to opioids outdoors? They do this because outdoor physical activity benefits physical and mental health. In fact, a recent Penn State University study found that more than 70% of Pennsylvania residents consider parks, trails, and open space to be a critical part of the health care system.

In light of that, the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation, with support from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and in partnership with the Department of Health, the South Mountain Partnership, and the Partnership for Better Health, is holding a “South Mountain Health Summit – The Benefits of Being Active Outdoors” on August 22 from 7 to 9 a.m. at the Cumberland Valley Visitors Bureau office, located at 53 W. South Street #1, Carlisle, PA 17013. The event, as well as parking, is free, and coffee and light refreshments will be provided.

The event is open to doctors, nurses, physician’s assistants, and other health care providers who have an interest in learning more about the connections between outdoor recreation and health and who would like to share their input on what they need in order to best provide information to their patients. Guest speakers include Dr. Chris Sciamanna from Hershey Medical Center and Dr. Andrew Mowen, of Penn State University, with additional information provided by Dr. Katherine Faull, Bucknell University.

“This summit will bring together a variety of health care and outdoor recreational professionals to share their ideas and experiences to get more people outdoors living healthy lifestyles,” said Marci Mowery, President of the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation. “We look forward to active and engaged discussion about outdoor recreation and how we can help health care providers talk to their patients about this important topic.”

To register for the summit, please email [email protected] by August 18.

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Health Care Providers in South-Central Pennsylvania Are Invited to a Summit on the Health Benefits of Outdoor Recreation