Healthy Eating Nova Scotia represents the first provincial comprehensive healthy eating strategy in Canada and a strategy that is framed within a population-health model. Five years after strategy launch, our objective was to evaluate Healthy Eating Nova Scotia to determine perceptions of strategy implementation and strategy outputs. The focus of the current paper is on the findings of this evaluation.
We conducted an evaluation of the strategy through three activities that included a document review, survey of key stakeholders and in-depth interviews with key strategy informants. The findings from each of the activities were integrated to determine what has worked well with strategy implementation, what could be improved and what outputs have resulted.
The evaluation was conducted in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia.
Participants for this evaluation included survey respondents (n 120) and key informants (n 16). A total of 156 documents were also reviewed.
Significant investments have been made towards inter-sectoral partnerships and resourcing that has provided the necessary leadership and momentum for the strategy. Policy development has been leveraged through the strategy primarily in the health and education sectors and is perceived as a visible success. Clarity of human resource roles and funding within the context of a provincial strategy may be beneficial for continued strategy implementation, as is expansion of policy development.
Known to be the first evaluation of its kind, these findings and related considerations will be of interest to policy makers developing and implementing similar strategies in their own jurisdictions.