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HPM alumni get together in DC

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Some of our favorite HPM alumni connected at Clyde’s of Gallery Place on September 27, 2017. Back Row: Jenny Huang, Alexandra Dulin, Alex Nason, David Tye, Mark Faccenda, Kevin Broom, Mark Roberts; Front Row: Deborah Backman, Nikita Sharma, Sally Caine Leathers, Kelly Delmore, Kristin Lazzara, and Kush Banjeree. 

A Pen that Detects Cancerous Tissue Could Help Surgeons Remove the Full Tumor

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A new handheld device could someday help cancer surgeons figure out what to cut and what to leave alone in real time. The MasSpecPen employs water, plastic tubing, and a mass spectrometer. It's the latest in engineer's effort to speed up the pace at which samples collected during operations are processed for clinically valuable information.   

Widowed Early, a Cancer Doctor Writes about the Harm of Medical Debt

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A radiation oncologist, and widow whose husband died of cancer, studies the effects of financial strain on cancer patients.   

The Motivating Power of Cancer

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Ian Toothill, 47, a personal trainer from London, has stage IV bowel cancers. Earlier this month, he reached the summit of Mt. Everest. "It's a way of changing the narrative, asserting control," explains Ellen Ormond, PhD, of the Center for Counseling and Cancer Support at the University of Pittsburgh...  

Hernandez on outcomes-based pricing for PCSK9 inhibitors

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AMERICAN JOURNAL OF MANAGED CARE - An article by alumna INMACULADA (INMA) HERNANDEZ (HPM ’16) discusses the impact of the outcomes-based pricing arrangements proposed by Amgen on the pricing of PCSK9 inhibitor therapy, and provides recommendations for payers on the design of outcomes-based contracts. She is an assistant professor at Pitt’s School of Pharmacy. Her research explores the intersection of pharmaceutical health services and outcomes re... 

Gollin reappointed to Pennsylvania Cancer Control, Prevention, and Research Advisoory Board

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Researcher SUZANNE GOLLIN, Department of Human Genetics, has been reappointed as a member of the Pennsylvania Cancer Control, Prevention, and Research Advisory Board. This was confirmed by the Senate on September 20, 2017. She is pictured here with an image of tumor cell biomarkers. 

Gellad questions CVS Health move to limit access to opioid painkillers

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WALL STREET JOURNAL - One of the largest managers of pharmaceutical benefits in the U.S. says it will start limiting the duration and dose of some prescriptions for opioid painkillers, in an effort to combat widespread addiction. The restrictions, based on CDC recommendations published last year, could cause some debate. WALID GELLAD, physician and HPM assistant professor, said the restrictions for chronic pain could cause cumbersome paperwork an... 

Salcido returns as epidemiology seminar speaker

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Alumnus DAVID SALCIDO (EPI ’08) delivered an epidemiology seminar entitled “Cardiac Arrest, Resuscitation and the Opioid Epidemic.” Since 2006 he has developed interests in cardiac arrest physiology (acute phase), resuscitation device and robotics development, signal analysis, and emergency medicine epidemiology. Current Pitt Public Health students JESSICA SALERNO (IDM '18) and ALLISON KOLLER (EPI '18) collaborate in his ongoing research.  

Frank on Telehealth Appalachian AIDS Education and Training (video)

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The Telehealth Appalachian AIDS Education and Training Center Project, led by IDM's LINDA FRANK, provides web-based HIV education, training, clinical guidelines, and resources to Appalachian community health centers. Frank has worked to increase knowledge and awareness about HIV disease in underserved communities in the hope of preventing discrimination and delivering more care to those who need it.  

Carolinas HealthCare System names DeFurio as new CFO

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CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL - After a natioinwide search, NC-based Carolinas HealthCare System has tapped alumnus ANTHONY DEFURIO (HADM ’89) to serve as executive vice president and CFO, effective October 2017. Carolinas recently announced it would merge with Chapel Hill-based UNC Health Care, forming one of the nation’s largest hospital networks. Leading up to this new position, DeFurio was senior vice president and CFO at University of Colorado ... 

Pittsburgh: Best U.S. city for millennials!

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CURBED - Look at the stats! In addition to a raft of articles talking about the city’s growing tech sector, a new report from the Brookings Institution just found that Pittsburgh’s per capita university research and development (R&D) spending was nearly two and a half times the national average, and its millennial population has risen 37.3 percent between 2000 and 2013. 

Browne speaks on stroke prevention measures for African Americans

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PITTSBURGH COURIER - Nearly half of all African American adults have some form of cardiovascular disease, and African Americans have nearly twice the risk for a first-ever stroke than Caucasians, resulting in a much higher death rate from stroke. Alumnus MARIO BROWNE (BCHS ’05), Pitt’s director of health sciences diversity and a spokesperson for the American Heart Association, talks about how those diseases can be prevented. 

Gellad says the naloxone pricing system is out of control (video)

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WTAE ACTION NEWS - As the opioid crisis sweeping the country, demand for naloxone has soared—and so has the price. HPM’s WALID GELLAD, who studies drug pricing, says the system is completely out of control. Naloxone cost increases have sky-rocketed, a huge concern for emergency service providers and community organizations. 

Burke on need to arm officials with opioid crisis data

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WIRED - Researchers have been calling for this kind of data-driven approach to the national opioid epidemic. They want to study the spread of opioids like infectious diseases, by looking at transmission patterns and recovery rates. But much of the data is locked in state agencies, making it difficult to access, says DONALD BURKE, dean of the Graduate School of Public Health at University of Pittsburgh. “These data should be liberated,” he says. 

HUGEN annual retreat welcomes new students

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In 2003, the Department of Human Genetics revived a tradition: a beginning-of-the-year department retreat for faculty, staff, students, friends, and family at the Pymatuning Laboratory of Ecology. Last weekend’s 2017 gathering featured a poster session, invited speaker talks, student talks, and a panel and group discussion, as well as plenty of opportunities for bonding over meals, table tennis, billiards, board games, canoeing, hiking, ’smores-m... 

Terry models community service outside the classroom

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BCHS rock star MARTHA TERRY is also amazing outside the classroom. Last weekend she was busy with community work in Pittsburgh’s Friendship neighborhood. 

Gellad sceptical that drug company outcomes-based pricing can lower costs

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Drug policy researcher WALID GELLAD says the outcomes-based contracts are being viewed as the solution to the drug-price problem, and they’re not going to be, at least not in the short term. The deals don’t stop drug companies from charging high starting prices for new drugs or from steadily raising prices for older drugs. Any rebates or discounts in outcomes-based contracts are off an already inflated number. He favors other ways to curb drug co... 

Pittsburgh: Top city for jobs

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MONEY - “When it comes to finding the best city for jobs, bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better,” says Andrew Chamberlain. “These areas stand out for offering some of the greatest job prospects along with a lower cost of living that allows more employees to live comfortably.” Pittsburgh tops the list! 

Epidemiology study named “Most Effective” in geriatric medicine

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An epidemiology study led senior author ANNE B. NEWMAN and alumna MINI E. JACOB (EPI ’14) was recently named one of the 10 most effective articles in geriatric medicine in 2016 at the American Geriatrics Society Annual Meeting. "Can a Healthy Lifestyle Compress the Disabled Period in Older Adults?" was published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society last year, and found that leading a healthy lifestyle not only extends one’s lifespa... 

Glynn finds small increases in physical activity reduce immobility, disability risks in older adults

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TUFTS NOW - Adding 48 minutes of moderate exercise per week is associated with improvements in overall physical functioning and decreases in risks of immobility in older adults who are sedentary, finds a new study assisted by author NANCY GLYNN, epidemiology researcher with the Center for Aging and Population Health. 

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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)
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Large Pitt-led study uncovers complex genetics behind earlobe attachment 

Large Pitt-led study uncovers complex genetics behind earlobe attachment

PITTWIRE - New research led by Pitt Public Health affiliates and published in the  American Journal of Human Genetics  reveals that an interplay of at least 49 genes contributes to earlobe attachment inheritance. “Sometimes the genetics of a fairly simple trait are actually quite complex,” said ... (12/06/2017)
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