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Opioid epidemic could spark HIV outbreak, health experts fear

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TRIB LIVE - Public health leaders, including DEAN DONALD BURKE, urged Gov. Tom Wolf to decriminalize syringe and needle exchanges. Evidence has shown that needle exchanges staunched the rapid rise of HIV cases in Pittsburgh. Burke said Wolf has the power to prevent widespread outbreaks of viruses by making clean needles readily available. "If he doesn't, I can guarantee an HIV epidemic in the state of Pennsylvania," Burke said.  

Osteoporosis as serious, but less understood in men than women says Cauley

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HEALIO - In 1998, researchers submitted the initial NIH grant for the Osteoporotic Fractures in Men study, designed to examine bone loss and fracture risk factors in older men. Much less is known about fractures and osteoporosis in men than in women. Although osteoporosis is still considered a woman’s disease, a man aged 60 years has a 25% chance of experiencing a fracture in his lifetime, says EPI’s JANE CAULEY. 

Gellad talks about the disconnect between what patients pay out of pocket and the true cost of drugs

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BIOPHARMA DRIVE - Nearly one in four patients picking up their prescription drugs from the pharmacy counter paid a copay which exceeded the price the insurer paid the pharmacy, according to an analysis of sampled reimbursement and insurance claim data published in JAMA. The disconnect between what patients pay out of pocket and the true cost of the drug (including rebates) is the real problem, says HPM’s WALID GELLAD.  

Donny speaks on FDA plan to make cigarettes less addictive

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LA TIMES - The FDA announcement is great news, said BCHS’ ERIC DONNY. He and other researchers found that reducing nicotine substantially leads smokers to be less dependent on cigarettes and smoke fewer of them was found in a study by and other researchers. "If you just reduce it a little, people might smoke more to make up the difference. They need to reduce it a lot." Regulators should consider a 95% to 97% reduction. 

Lycia Neumann - 2017 Center for Global Health Student Travel Scholarship Recipient

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As an international student, LYCIA NEUMANN always had the intention to take the skills she has learned at Pitt Public Health back to her home in Brazil. Because of the scholarship, she was able to study the profile and unmet needs of cancer patients' family caregivers in Brazil. Her experience has taught her important lessons, such as, " Go with a good plan and a contact. Don't wait to develop your project until you get there."  

Brendan DeCenso – 2017 Center for Global Health Student Travel Scholarship Recipient

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“Pittsburgh is a great city,“ said BRENDAN DECENSO. “But take opportunities to go work elsewhere – it will change you for the better.” After seeing frustrating inequalities among countries related to HIV, he was inspired to practice medicine internationally. He organized a project for himself in Lima, Peru and says that h would not have been able to have the experience he had without the aid from the scholarship.   

Rappocciolo presents research on cell cholesterol dysregulation in HIV non-progressors at 2018 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections

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IDM's GIOVANNA RAPPOCCIOLO presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections ion biomarkers and genetics of cell cholesterol dysregulation in HIV non-progressors. Co-authors include IDM faculty J MARTINSON and C RINALDO and recent doctoral graduate DIANA DELUCIA.   

Parran Hall review web page

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Pitt's Office of Diversity and Inclusion now has a web page up listing review committee, information on how to submit comments, and a link to the letter from Dean Burke requesting that the formation of a review committee to consider the name of Parran Hall.   

Former U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher to give keynote at 70th Anniversary

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Pitt Public Health marks 70 years with a two-day celebration of the history and future of public health education, practice, and research. Giving the keynote address is David Satcher, MD, PhD, former U.S. Surgeon General, and founding director and senior advisor of the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at the Morehouse School of Medicine. Satcher has an extensive track record of leadership, research, and community engagement.   

Melody receives postdoctoral fellowship

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University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston has offered KEVIN MELODY (IDM '17) a postdoctoral fellowship in a BSL-4 research group headed by Thomas Geisbert. Due to the security and proficiency needed to perform the work, Kevin will undergo extensive training before beginning high-containment pathogen-related research.  

Swan joins Cato Research

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"A great company in a great industry," says ZACHARY SWAN (IDM '16) who has recently secured a position as a Regulatory Affairs, Clinical Strategy Scientist at a CRO in the Research Triangle Park named Cato Research.  

Dean Burke among ASPPH members that issued joint letter to Governor Wolf, urging for the removal of bans to syringe service programs

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ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Pennsylvania leaders of ASPPH member schools issued a joint letter to Governor Tom Wolf, urging him to remove barriers to syringe service programs in the Commonwealth. DEAN DONALD BURKE was among the signers. Syringe service programs are among responses the opioid crisis recommended by the National Academy of Sciences.  

Emerson Evans on detail with CDC

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Helping out with The United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Country Operational Plan submission, EMERSON EVANS (IDM '12) is currently working in South Africa on detail with the CDC. 

Fabio on reasonable guns legislation hinges on reasonable discussion

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DAILY PRESS – In Del. Mike Mullin’s op/ed on gun violence he quotes EPI’S ANTHONY FABIO. Fabio worked with the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police on a study that found that in more than 80% of gun crimes, the person committing the crime was not in legal possession of the weapon. The problem isn’t legal gun ownership, it is illegal gun ownership. “All guns start out as legal guns,” says Fabio.   

Poston receives San-Pin Wang Award from the Chlamydia Basic Research Society

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The San-Pin Wang Award for the best graduate student oral presentation at the Chlamydia Basic Research Society 2017 conference was given to TAYLOR POSTON (IDM '17). This award was established in honor of the memory of Dr. San-Pin Wang and a cash prize was generously donated by the San-Pin Wang Endowment Fund.  

Hawk, Egan, and Keane caution against study linking increased access of Naloxone to crime

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CNN – A new study has found that after the expansion of access to naloxone, arrests for possession and sales of opioids increased by 17% and 27%, respectively. However, BCHS's MARY HAWK, JAMES EGAN, and CHRIS KEANE had some cautions. Just because both expanded during the same time period does not mean that one caused the other. Even if that was true, they would not propose removing access to a lifesaving drug, they said.  

Film explores 1968 origins of "Cantini Man" sculpture through Mr. Rogers

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In "Virgil Cantini: The Artist in Public," Will Zavala, associate professor at Pittsburgh Filmmakers/PCA, examines the public art of famed Pittsburgh muralist and sculptor Virgil Cantini. Highlights include footage from a charming 1968 interview of the artist on one of the first episodes of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, where Cantini shares a maquette for his scientific “Man” which for decades has proudly adorned the Fifth Avenue façade of the Pit... 

New banners showcase impacts of Pitt Public Health

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This week Pitt Public Health is launching a public art campaign of banners showing those impacted by the field of public health and sharing some of the school's areas of excellence such as health equity, healthy aging, global and women's health. "With seven departments doing widely different work, we're always seeking new ways to respond to the question, 'What is public health?'" says Eleanor Feingold, senior associate dean."One solution is to f... 

Value based payment inequity and reimbursement models with which you should be familiar

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MEDPAGETODAY - Financial incentives and patient care in today’s health care industry are near inseparable. This article delineates some important issues and tips about Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Included are benefits from voluntary bundles, care calculation issues, and a study on inconsistencies in value based payment methods from HPM’s ERIC ROBERTS.   

Fabio's input on stolen gun homicides in the gun debate

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FACTCHECK.ORG - As lead author of the study on recovered guns in Pittsburgh, EPI's ANTHONY FABIO comments on the lack of relevant data in firearm research. Fabio served in a fact checking capacity, commenting on the recent President-Congress discussion on gun violence reduction. His major criticism; “There’s not a lot of money for research with the word ‘firearm’ in it.”  

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HuGen alumna's creation aims to reduce radiation exposure from stress tests 

HuGen alumna's creation aims to reduce radiation exposure from stress tests

PITTWIRE - Doctoral alumna MALIHA ZAHID ( HUGEN  '09) aims to reduce the amount of radiation that patients are exposed to when undergoing diagnostic imaging. Her creation, to be used during cardiac stress tests, was a previous Pitt PInCh winner. (04/17/2018)
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Coming of Age Ceremony brings Japanese tradition, Pittsburgh community together 

Coming of Age Ceremony brings Japanese tradition, Pittsburgh community together

PITT WIRE - While learning English at Pitt, 25 Japanese students missed out on the annual Coming of Age Ceremony, a national holiday in Japan. The Asian Studies Center threw them a party. “So many people support me here in Pittsburgh,” said Nanami Moriyasu, a Yasuda student majoring in English lite... (02/07/2018)
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Thurston finds link between traumatic events and future heart disease risk in women 

Thurston finds link between traumatic events and future heart disease risk in women

PITT WIRE - When we consider the determinants of women’s cardiovascular health, we need to think beyond biology alone,” said epidemiologist Rebecca Thurston. She recently led a study that demonstrates how traumatic experiences in life are linked to later vascular health issues that place women at ri... (12/12/2017)

The ASPPH Friday Letter features the latest research, opportunities, and groundbreaking developments from CEPH-accredited schools and programs of public health. 
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submission guidelines then share your story or story ideas via publichealth.pitt.edu/share-news or contact phcomm@pitt.edu. 

ASPPH data center visits Pittsburgh 

ASPPH data center visits Pittsburgh

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Last Thursday, ASPPH Data Center staff visited Pitt Public Health, meeting with administrators, staff, and the university-wide Tableau business intelligence user group. The consultation focused on upcoming ASPPH Annual Data Reporting, ASPPH resources for diversity studies, usi... (04/23/2018)
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Pitt Public Health partners with PA and the Aetna Foundation on Opioid Data Dashboard 

Pitt Public Health partners with PA and the Aetna Foundation on Opioid Data Dashboard

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - "In as near-real time as possible, this dashboard will give health officials, policymakers, law enforcement and the public a more complete, dynamic picture of the opioid epidemic in Pennsylvania," Dean Burke said. "This should allow us to maximize limited resources to stem thi... (04/04/2018)
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Dean Burke among ASPPH members that issued joint letter to Governor Wolf, urging for the removal of bans to syringe service programs 

Dean Burke among ASPPH members that issued joint letter to Governor Wolf, urging for the removal of bans to syringe service programs

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Pennsylvania leaders of ASPPH member schools issued a joint letter to Governor Tom Wolf, urging him to remove barriers to syringe service programs in the Commonwealth. DEAN DONALD BURKE was among the signers. Syringe service programs are among responses the opioid crisis recom... (03/14/2018)
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