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News and training opportunities
Cool websites and reports on hot topics*
Interesting journal articles*
News and training opportunities
March 6-7, 2017 Washington, DC or via webcast: Advances in Causal Understanding for Risk Based Decision Making, presented by the National Academy of Sciences. At this workshop, participants will discuss the current thinking surrounding causal models, bring in experts from other fields that utilize different data streams for establishing causality in complex systems, and further explore methods for evaluating multi-causality and incorporating molecular data. Workshop participants will also discuss how these novel approaches and tools are relevant for environmental health and how they can be incorporated into the decision making process. Register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/advances-in-causal-understanding-for-human-health-risk-based-decision-making-tickets-30461160150
March 7, 2017 2-3 pm CST: County Health Rankings 2017: Measures and New Features. In this webinar, information will be shared about what is new in this year’s Rankings release. Participants will learn about new measures, changes to existing measures, and new web site features. Register at http://www.countyhealthrankings.org/webinars/county-health-rankings-2017-measures-and-new-features
March 14, 2017 1–2 pm CDT: Beyond Needs Assessments: Using Community Commons Data for Advocacy and Program Development. The goal of Community Commons is to increase the impact of those working toward healthy, equitable, and sustainable communities. This webinar will highlight the newest data available within Community Commons. Register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4691532933379966209
March 15, 2017 2–3 pm CDT: GIS for Public Health Information Professionals This webinar will provide an overview of geographic information systems (GIS), types of geospatial data, and the basics of visualizing health information. Register at https://nih.webex.com/mw3000/mywebex/default.do?service=7&main_url=%2Ftc3000%2Ftrainingcenter%2Fdefault.do%3Fsiteurl%3Dnih%26main_url%3D%252Ftc3000%
April 26-27, 2017 San Antonio, TX: 4th Annual Cultural Inclusion Institute. Conference Theme: Linking Social Determinants of Health to Health Disparities and Cultural Inclusion, to be held at UT Health Science Center, School of Nursing. For more information, see https://ce.uthscsa.edu/browse/nursing/courses/4th-cultural-inclusion-conference
Public Health Pronto: Addresses the eight Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals, putting key public health concepts into alignment with Maternal and Child Health priorities, using a modular format designed to increase knowledge and skills through 5-minute intensive learning sessions available through a web portal. See https://www.mchnavigator.org/pronto/
Vector Control for Environmental Health Professionals (VCEHP): VCEHP is an online learning series that contains eleven online courses and emphasizes the use of integrated pest management (IPM) to address public health pests and vectors that spread diseases, including Zika virus and others. See http://lms.southcentralpartnership.org/vcehp.php
"We Were There" is a quarterly lecture series featuring past and present CDC investigators, the original Disease Detectives, as they share their personal perspectives on historically important, CDC-led epidemiologic and laboratory investigations. The video presentations can be watched on the website, https://www.cdc.gov/od/science/wewerethere/.
Cool websites and reports on hot topics*
2017-2022 Texas State Health Plan: A Proposal for Ensuring High-Quality Health Care for All Texans has been issued. This plan offers numerous strategies to improve the efficiency of Texas’ health care delivery system, address shortcomings in its payment system, produce more health care providers in critical areas of need, and heighten patient satisfaction with the health care system. See http://www.dshs.texas.gov/chs/shcc/default.shtm
Effects of Severe Weather on Behavioral Health: web page outlines resources available from SAMHSA for behavioral health following a disaster or emergency. See https://newsletter.samhsa.gov/2017/01/25/severe-weather-effects-on-mental-health/
Feeding Guidelines for Infants and Young Toddlers: A Responsive Parenting Approach, Durham, NC: Healthy Eating Research, 2017. These guidelines focus on what and how to feed infants and toddlers, within the context of the growing child and responsive parenting. Available at http://healthyeatingresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/her_feeding_guidelines_report_021416-1.pdf
Foster Care: HHS Has Taken Steps to Support States' Oversight of Psychotropic Medications, but Additional Assistance Could Further Collaboration. GAO-17-129, January 5. The Report is located at http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-17-129 or read just the Highlights at http://www.gao.gov/assets/690/681917.pdf
The National Profile of Local Health Departments from NACCHO has been released for 2016. Read the whole report at http://nacchoprofilestudy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Main-Report-Final.pdf or highlights at http://nacchoprofilestudy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Highlights-Report-Final.pdf
Reaching Those in Need: Estimates of State Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Participation Rates in 2014 by Mathematica Policy Research. The brief reviews participation rates for eligible people and the working poor nationally and for each of the 50 states in 2014. See https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/reaching-those-need-estimates-state-supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-participation-rates
The State Role in Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act Implementation, ASTHO, January 13, 2017. The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act emphasizes that behavioral health is an important component of an individual’s overall health; however, the Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Parity Task Force highlights opportunities to improve enforcement of insurance beneficiary protections in this legislation. See http://www.astho.org/StatePublicHealth/The-State-Role-in-Mental-Health-Parity-and-Addiction-Equity-Act-Implementation/1-13-17/?blogid=4396
Sugar-sweetened Beverage Consumption among U.S. Adults, 2011–2014. NCHS Data Brief No. 270, January 2017. This report presents results for consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages among U.S. adults aged 20 and over for 2011-2014 by sex, age, and race and Hispanic origin. See https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db270.pdf
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program’s Role in Addressing Nutrition-Related Health Issues, edited by Neal D. Barnard, David L. Katz. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 2017 Feb.; 52(2):S103-S206. Supplement 2 presents open access articles on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, its effectiveness, its challenges, and how its policies can be revised to meet the newest dietary guidelines. See http://www.ajpmonline.org/issue/S0749-3797(16)X0030-X
Using state laws & regulations to promote healthy eating and physical activity in afterschool programs. In RTI Final Report for Project 0215207. Wiecha, J., & Capogrossi, 2016. Research Triangle Park, NC: RTI International. Based on stakeholder interviews and state case studies, the authors concluded that the state policy approach holds significant promise if it avoids creating unfunded mandates. See https://www.rti.org/sites/default/files/resources/rti.wiecha.her.statehepapolicy.pdf
Interesting journal articles*
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease readmissions and other measures of hospital quality. Rinne ST, Castaneda J, Lindenauer PK, et al. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2017 Feb 1. doi: 10.1164/rccm.201609-1944OC. [Epub ahead of print]
Background: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently implemented financial penalties to reduce hospital readmissions for select conditions, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Despite growing pressure to reduce COPD readmissions, it is unclear how COPD readmission rates are related to other measures of quality. Understanding the association of COPD readmissions and other quality measures could help focus efforts on common organizational factors affecting high quality patient care. Methods: We analyzed data from the 2015 CMS annual files, downloaded from the Hospital Compare website. We included 3,705 hospitals nationwide that had publically reported data on COPD readmissions. We compared COPD readmission rates to other risk-adjusted measures of quality, including readmission and mortality rates for other conditions, and patient reports about care experiences. Results: There were modest correlations between COPD readmission rates and readmission rates for other medical conditions, including heart failure (R2 = 0.39, p < 0.01), acute myocardial infarction (R2 = 0.30, p < 0.01), pneumonia (R2 = 0.38, p < 0.01), and stroke (R2 = 0.29, p < 0.01). In contrast we found low correlations between COPD readmission rates and readmission rates for surgical conditions as well as mortality rates for all measured conditions. There were significant correlations between COPD readmission rates and all patient experience measures. Conclusions: These findings suggest there may be common organizational factors that influence multiple disease-specific outcomes. As pay-for-performance programs focus attention on individual disease outcomes, hospitals may benefit from in-depth assessments of organizational factors affecting multiple aspects of hospital quality.
The contagious spread of violence among US adolescents through social networks. Bond RM, Bushman BJ. Am J Public Health. 2017 Feb;107(2):288-294.
Objectives: To test the hypothesis that violence among US adolescents spreads like a contagious disease through social networks. Methods: Participants were a nationally representative sample of 90 118 US students aged 12 to 18 years who were involved in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Violence was assessed by having participants report the number of times in the preceding 12 months they had been involved in a serious physical fight, had hurt someone badly, and had pulled a weapon on someone. Results: Participants were 48% more likely to have been involved in a serious fight, 183% more likely to have hurt someone badly, and 140% more likely to have pulled a weapon on someone if a friend had engaged in the same behavior. The influence spread up to 4 degrees of separation (i.e., friend of friend of friend of friend) for serious fights, 2 degrees for hurting someone badly, and 3 degrees for pulling a weapon on someone. Conclusions: Adolescents were more likely to engage in violent behavior if their friends did the same, and contagion of violence extended beyond immediate friends to friends of friends.
Democracy, rights, community: examining ethical frameworks for federal public health emergency response. Myers N. Public Integrity. 2016;18(2):201-226.
Public health emergencies like the H1N1 pandemic and the recent response to Ebola highlight the challenge that public health officials face when balancing protection of the public with upholding constitutional and ethical principles. Analyses of the report of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues and of ethics documents produced by the Ethics Subcommittee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention before and after H1N1 revealed the presence of, and correlations between, three ethical frameworks. The findings indicate the power of the collective voice in public health emergencies and the vital importance of democratic participation and deliberation in better preparing the United States for future emergencies.
Developing mobile phone text messages for tobacco risk communication among college students: a mixed methods study. Prokhorov AV, Machado TC, Calabro KS, et al. BMC Public Health. 2017 Jan 31;17(1):137. doi: 10.1186/s12889-017-4027-z.
Background: Engaging young adults for the purpose of communicating health risks associated with nicotine and tobacco use can be challenging since they comprise a population heavily targeted with appealing marketing by the evolving tobacco industry. The Food and Drug Administration seeks novel ways to effectively communicate risks to warn about using these products. This paper describes the first step in developing a text messaging program delivered by smartphones that manipulate three messaging characteristics (i.e., depth, framing, and appeal). Methods: Perceptions of community college students were described after previewing text messages designed to inform about risks of using conventional and new tobacco products. Thirty-one tobacco users and nonusers, aged 18-25 participated in five focus discussions held on two community college campuses. Attendees reviewed prototype messages and contributed feedback about text message structure and content. Qualitative data were coded and analyzed using NVivo Version 10. Results: Most participants were female and two-thirds were ethnic minorities. A variety of conventional and new tobacco products in the past month were used by a third of participants. Three identified domains were derived from the qualitative data. These included perceived risks of using tobacco products, receptivity to message content, and logistical feedback regarding the future message campaign. Conclusion: Overall, participants found the messages to be interesting and appropriate. A gap in awareness of the risks of using new tobacco products was revealed. Feedback on the prototype messages was incorporated into message revisions. These findings provided preliminary confirmation that the forthcoming messaging program will be appealing to young adults.
Implementation of a Legionella ordinance for multifamily housing, Garland, Texas. Whitney EA, Blake S, Berkelman RL. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2017 Jan 30. doi: 10.1097/PHH.0000000000000518. [Epub ahead of print]
Context: The incidence of legionellosis has sharply increased in the United States as a result of contaminated water systems. Jurisdictions across the country are considering whether to develop and implement regulations to protect individuals against Legionnaires' disease with its associated high morbidity and mortality. Objective: This article sheds light on the implementation and effectiveness of a 2005 citywide Legionella testing mandate of multifamily housing cooling towers in Garland, Texas. This ordinance has been in place for more than 10 years and represents the first of its kind in the United States to mandate routine testing of cooling towers for Legionella in multifamily housing. Design, Setting, and Population: We utilized a mix of both qualitative and quantitative methods to explore the development, adoption, and implementation of the ordinance. Phone interviews were conducted with individuals from the City of Garland Health Department and apartment managers. Quantitative data included public health surveillance data on legionellosis. Main Outcome Measures: Barriers and facilitators of implementation, number and percentage of cooling towers from multifamily housing units that tested positive for Legionella by year, and number of legionellosis cases by year in Garland, Texas. Results: Study outcomes highlight key themes that facilitated the successful implementation of the Legionella testing mandate, including the importance of timing, leadership support, stakeholder engagement, and education and outreach. The number of contaminated cooling towers was reduced over time. Implications: Mandatory monitoring for legionella in a local jurisdiction may result in reduced risk of legionellosis from cooling towers through raising awareness and education of building owners and managers about the need to prevent, detect, and remediate legionella contamination in their building water systems. Conclusion: Garland, Texas, broke new ground in the United States in moving toward primary prevention of legionellosis. The ordinance may be useful both in serving to educate and increase awareness about the need for Legionella prevention and to monitor effectiveness of maintenance procedures
Managing change at work. Garber PR. T+D. 2013 Jan;67(1):48-51.
The article discusses the role of managers in facilitating change at organizations, presenting recommendations for change management. According to the article, managers and employees should seek to learn about impending changes and the rationale behind them. Leaders should support employees in their career development, learn new skills, network, and make themselves indispensable. The article cautions against becoming self-destructive, complaining, and damaging working relationships. Topics include the role of change initiators, implementers, and targets in the change process.
Precision medicine in allergic disease - food allergy, drug allergy, and anaphylaxis. Muraro A, Lemanske RF Jr, Castells M, et al. Allergy. 2017 Jan 25. doi: 10.1111/all.13132. [Epub ahead of print]
This consensus document summarizes the current knowledge on the potential for precision medicine in food allergy, drug allergy and anaphylaxis under the auspices of the PRACTALL collaboration platform. PRACTALL is a joint effort of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, which aims to synchronize the European and American approaches to allergy care. Precision medicine is an emerging approach for disease treatment based on disease endotypes, which are phenotypic subclasses associated with specific mechanisms underlying the disease. Although significant progress has been made in defining endotypes for asthma, definitions of endotypes for food and drug allergy or for anaphylaxis lag behind. Progress has been made in discovery of biomarkers to guide a precision medicine approach to treatment of food and drug allergy, but further validation and quantification of these biomarkers is needed to allow their translation into practice in the clinical management of allergic disease.
Prevalence and correlates of alcohol and tobacco use among pregnant women in the United States: Evidence from the NSDUH 2005-2014. Oh S, Reingle Gonzalez JM, Salas-Wright CP, et al. Prev Med. 2017 Jan 19;97:93-99.
Alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy are among the strongest and most preventable risk factors for adverse neonatal health outcomes, but few developmentally sensitive, population-based studies of this phenomenon have been conducted. To address this gap, the present study examined the prevalence and correlates of alcohol and tobacco use among pregnant adolescents (aged 12-17) and adults (aged 18-44) in the United States. Data were derived from the population-based National Survey of Drug Use and Health (80,498 adolescent and 152,043 adult women) between 2005 and 2014. Findings show disconcerting levels of past-month use among pregnant women with 11.5% of adolescent and 8.7% of adult women using alcohol, and 23.0% of adolescent and 14.9% of adult women using tobacco. Compared to their non-pregnant counterparts, pregnant adolescents were less likely to report past 30-day alcohol use (AOR=0.52, 95% CI=0.36-0.76), but more likely to report past 30-day tobacco use (AOR=2.20, 95% CI=1.53-3.18). Compared to their non-pregnant adult counterparts, pregnant adults were less likely to report using alcohol (AOR=0.06, 95% CI=0.05-0.07) and tobacco (AOR=0.47, 95% CI=0.43-0.52). Compared to pregnant abstainers, pregnant women reporting alcohol/tobacco use were more likely to have had a major depressive episode in the past 12months, report criminal justice system involvement, and endorse comorbid alcohol/tobacco use. Given alcohol and tobacco's deleterious consequences during pregnancy, increased attention to reducing use is critical. Findings suggest that tobacco use is especially problematic for both adolescents and adults and is strongly linked with depression and criminal justice involvement, especially among adults.
Transformational change takes time and effort. Garvey K, Coleman AB. Public Manager. 2015 Spr;44(1):27-9.
The article focuses on achieving organizational change in public sector setting. It discusses the three critical levers of change in a public organization including the human capital, the infrastructure, and the organizational culture. It also outlines strategies to address cultural concerns in an organization which include opening leadership team meetings, civility brown-bag sessions, and cultural and linguistic competence survey.
Trends in premature mortality in the USA by sex, race, and ethnicity from 1999 to 2014: an analysis of death certificate data. Shiels MS, Chernyavskiy P, Anderson WF, et al. Lancet. 2017 Jan 25. pii: S0140-6736(17)30187-3. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(17)30187-3. [Epub ahead of print]
Background: Reduction of premature mortality is a UN Sustainable Development Goal. Unlike other high-income countries, age-adjusted mortality in the USA plateaued in 2010 and increased slightly in 2015, possibly because of rising premature mortality. We aimed to analyse trends in mortality in the USA between 1999 and 2014 in people aged 25-64 years by age group, sex, and race and ethnicity, and to identify specific causes of death underlying the temporal trends. Methods: For this analysis, we used cause-of-death and demographic data from death certificates from the US National Center for Health Statistics, and population estimates from the US Census Bureau. We estimated annual percentage changes in mortality using age-period-cohort models. Age-standardised excess deaths were estimated for 2000 to 2014 as observed deaths minus expected deaths (estimated from 1999 mortality rates). Findings: Between 1999 and 2014, premature mortality increased in white individuals and in American Indians and Alaska Natives. Increases were highest in women and those aged 25-30 years. Among 30-year-olds, annual mortality increases were 2·3% (95% CI 2·1-2·4) for white women, 0·6% (0·5-0·7) for white men, and 4·3% (3·5-5·0) and 1·9% (1·3-2·5), respectively, for American Indian and Alaska Native women and men. These increases were mainly attributable to accidental deaths (primarily drug poisonings), chronic liver disease and cirrhosis, and suicide. Among individuals aged 25-49 years, an estimated 111 000 excess premature deaths occurred in white individuals and 6600 in American Indians and Alaska Natives during 2000-14. By contrast, premature mortality decreased substantially across all age groups in Hispanic individuals (up to 3·2% per year), black individuals (up to 3·9% per year), and Asians and Pacific Islanders (up to 2·6% per year), mainly because of declines in HIV, cancer, and heart disease deaths, resulting in an estimated 112 000 fewer deaths in Hispanic individuals, 311 000 fewer deaths in black individuals, and 34 000 fewer deaths in Asians and Pacific Islanders aged 25-64 years. During 2011-14, American Indians and Alaska Natives had the highest premature mortality, followed by black individuals. INTERPRETATION: Important public health successes, including HIV treatment and smoking cessation, have contributed to declining premature mortality in Hispanic individuals, black individuals, and Asians and Pacific Islanders. However, this progress has largely been negated in young and middle-aged (25-49 years) white individuals, and American Indians and Alaska Natives, primarily because of potentially avoidable causes such as drug poisonings, suicide, and chronic liver disease and cirrhosis. The magnitude of annual mortality increases in the USA is extremely unusual in high-income countries, and a rapid public health response is needed to avert further premature deaths.
Why peer crowds matter: incorporating youth subcultures and values in health education campaigns. Moran MB, Walker MW, Alexander TN, Am J Public Health. 2017 Jan 19:e1-e7.
Grounded on research showing that peer crowds vary in risk behavior, several recent health behavior interventions, including the US Food and Drug Administration's Fresh Empire campaign, have targeted high-risk peer crowds. We establish the scientific foundations for using this approach. We introduce peer crowd targeting as a strategy for culturally targeting health behavior interventions to youths. We use social identity and social norms theory to explicate the theoretical underpinnings of this approach. We describe Fresh Empire to demonstrate how peer crowd targeting functions in a campaign and critically evaluate the benefits and limitations of this approach. By replacing unhealthy behavioral norms with desirable, healthy lifestyles, peer crowd-targeted interventions can create a lasting impact that resonates in the target audience's culture.
1. Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader by Herminia Ibarra.
2. Committed Teams: Three Steps to Inspiring Passion and Performance by Mario Moussa.
3. Essentials of Health Policy and Law, 3rd ed. by Joel Bern Teitelbaum.
4. FAST: 4 Principles Every Business Needs to Achieve Success and Drive Results by Gordon Tredgold.
5. Fundamentals of Biostatistics, 8th ed. by Bernard Rosner.
6. The Hard Truth About Soft Skills: Workplace Lessons Smart People Wish They'd Learned Sooner by Peggy Klaus.
7. Health Care as a Social Good: Religious Values and American Democracy by David Craig
8. Impossible to Ignore: Creating Memorable Content to Influence Decisions by Carmen Simon.
9. The New Manager's Survival Guide: Everything You Need to Know to Succeed in the Corporate World by Steven Haines.
10. Professional SharePoint 2013 Administration by Shane Young.
11. Public Health and Epidemiology at a Glance by Margaret Somerville.
12. Reaching Teens: Strength-Based Communication Strategies to Build Resilience and Support Healthy Adolescent Development by American Academy of Pediatrics.
13. Results: Think Less. Achieve More by Jamie Smart.
14. What You Really Need to Lead: The Power of Thinking and Acting Like an Owner by Robert S. Kaplan.
To check out any of the following ebooks, go to Library Services at http://online.dshs.internal/library.aspx. Click on Electronic Library (left-hand side). Click on Books in the center of the screen and then type in the title in the search box below. If you have difficulties or want to access these at home, please contact email@example.com or call 512-776-7559.
1. Case Management and Care Coordination: Supporting Children and Families to Optimal Outcomes by Janet Treadwell and Rebecca Perez.
2. Davis's Comprehensive Handbook of Laboratory & Diagnostic Tests with Nursing Implications by Anne M. Van Leeuwen.
3. HBR's 10 Must Reads on Managing People by Harvard Business Review.
4. Health Behavior: Theory, Research, and Practice by Karen Glanz and Barbara K. Rimer.
5. Multidisciplinary Approach to Obesity: From Assessment to Treatment by Andrea Lenzi and Silvia Migliaccio.
6. Physical Change and Aging: A Guide for the Helping Professions, 6th ed,. by Sue V. Saxon and Mary Jean Etten.
7. Population-Based Public Health Clinical Manual: The Henry Street Model of Nurses by Carolyn Garcia and Marjorie Schaffer.
8. Successful Nurse Communication: Safe Care, Healthy Workplace, & Rewarding Careers by Beth Boynton.
*For More Information: Employees may contact the Medical and Research Library at firstname.lastname@example.org, call 512-776-7559, or come by Moreton Building, Room M-652, to borrow a print book, receive password access to a journal, receive other research assistance, or to obtain full-text of the articles mentioned in this month's news. If you are not located on the main campus in Austin, simply let us know what you would like to borrow and we will mail it to you.
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