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Kahn finds hospital choice could affect pediatric mortality during emergencies

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HEALIO - A child’s chance of survival in an emergency may depend on the hospital where they receive care. Researchers assessed the pediatric readiness of EDs in five states and found that hospitals with the highest scores had lower mortality rates. “For some time, we’ve known that hospitals vary widely with respect to their readiness to care for pediatric emergencies,” said HPM's Jeremy Kahn. “What’s new about our study is that for the first tim... 

Smagula comments on study that says dementia caregiving takes toll on sleep

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Just looking at the average difference in sleep over a week may be “misleading,” said EPI's Stephen Smagula. “That comes down to about 25 minutes a day. But some caregivers may be really losing a lot of sleep while some aren’t losing much,” he added.  

Read the latest from BCHS in inaugural issue of newsletter (PDF)

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In case you missed it - head into the new academic year by catching up with the highlights from BCHS faculty, students, and staff with the 2019 newsletter.   

Coulter Research Review Finds Scarcity of Scientific Studies on Interventions to Reduce Health Inequities in LGBTQ Youth

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ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - There is a dearth of scientifically investigated, evidence-based interventions to address substance use, mental health conditions and violence victimization in sexual and gender minority youth, according to a research review led by BCHS's Robert Coulter (BCHS '17) published in the journal Pediatrics. After poring over thousands of research publications spanning nearly two decades, the scientists identified only nine studies... 

Computer simulation just predicted a huge measles outbreak in texas, with 4,000 percent increase predicted in some communities

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NEWSWEEK - David Sinclair, a postdoctoral researcher in Pitt's Public Health Dynamics Laboratory and lead author of the study said, "I was surprised at how large measles outbreaks could be in Texas at current vaccination rates, according to our forecasts. The clustering of unvaccinated children in certain schools appears to help measles spread widely."  

Nowalk authors chapter in upcoming public health guide to opioid epidemic

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Alex Nowalk (BCHS '16), program director at Pitt's Program Evaluation and Research Unit, recently co-authored a chapter in an upcoming book, A Public Health Guide to Ending the Opioid Epidemic. Nowalk's chapter presents screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment as a public health and prevention strategy to address substance use and addiction. The book will be published through Oxford University Press and co-published with the Amer... 

Programs work from within to prevent black maternal deaths: Workers targeting root cause — Racism

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THE NATION'S HEALTH - The law is good news for maternal health, but it is critical that such committees include and work with women most at risk, said EPI's Dara Mendez, a member of Pennsylvania’s newly established Maternal Mortality Review Committee, which had its first meeting in July. In a Health Affairs article published in February on implementation of the new federal law, Mendez and co-authors said the “extent to which these voices are cur... 

El Khoudary finds hormone therapy linked to heart fat, hard arteries

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ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Hormone replacement therapy is a common treatment for menopause-related symptoms, and new research from EPI's Samar El Khoudary reinforces the importance of tailoring hormone therapy to each patient, based on her individual risk factors for cardiovascular disease. In a study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, researchers showed for the first time that hormone replacement therapy affects the accumula... 

Environmental concerns aren't the only reason to reduce plastic consumption, Adibi points out

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FOX 46 ORLANDO - "They are considered fat-loving or lipophilic. So they naturally migrate into the fat in the food,” EPI's Jennifer Adibi said.   

Jarlenski points to power of prevention after study finds 2% of women have ‘persistent’ opioid use after childbirth

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STAT NEWS - “This study shows that there continues to be a chance to really intervene on the prevention side,” said HPM's Marian Jarlenski. The decision to write an initial prescription is a low-hanging-fruit point of intervention, she said.  

Peddada presents at international data science workshop in Jilin China

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BIOST Chair Shyamal Peddada presented "Identification of rhythmic signals in oscilatory systems with applications to chronobiology at the July 2019 International Workshop on Data Science at Jilin University, Changchun, Jilin, China.   

According to Sullivan, depression in older Pittsburghers is dropping

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People in the Mon Valley ages 65 and older are experiencing fewer depression symptoms than previously reported. A new study authored in part by EPI postdoc Kevin Sullivan, looked at how over 3,000 older people in communities across Southwestern Pennsylvanians are aging physically and mentally. The study finds people born more recently report fewer symptoms than cohorts from earlier birth decades. “Our job when looking at these effects is to real... 

As Its Drug Pricing Plans Fall Through, Trump Administration Turns To Congress To Act

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NPR - "This is a huge potential change, transformative," said HPM's Walid Gellad, director of the Center for Pharmaceutical Policy and Prescribing at Pitt.   

Making Pitt Work: Browne's focus has always been on diversity

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UNIVERSITY TIMES - After spending 2002-09 at Pitt as project director and community health coordinator for the Center for Minority Health (now the Center for Health Equity), Mario Browne (BCHS '05) returned in 2011 as the director of diversity for the Schools of the Health Sciences and now aims to bring diversity to the faculty and staff. “It’s not just about knowing each other, it’s about knowing yourself,” he adds, “the way that we service our... 

Water Safety and Lead Regulation: Physicians' Community Health Responsibilities

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AMA JOURNAL OF ETHICS - This article reviews the regulation of lead in drinking water, highlighting its epidemiological, engineering, and ethical aspects with a focus on the Flint water crisis. Discussing water quality policy and its implimentation with a focus on lead contamination of water, primarily from pipe systems between a water treatment facility and a tap; then physicians' roles and ethical responsibilites regarding safe drinking water ... 

The Flint Water Crisis and Beyond - resources from APHA

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Recordings and slides from a three-part webinar series on lead and public health from the American Public Health Association. The drinking water crisis in Flint, Michigan has raised public health concerns about lead exposure, the U.S. water supply infrastructure, and the autority to enforce safe and sanitary condtiions. Join the leadership of APHA to learn about the impact of led exposure on health.   

Summer reads from The Nation's Health

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THE NATION'S HEALTH - With summer’s arrival, it’s time to find a quiet beach, a shady grove, a comfortable corner on an inviting porch and relax with a good book. But which one? That’s where we can help.  The Nation’s Health  editors have searched online and brick-and-mortar book sellers to come up with a simmering hot collection of the latest public health-related books. Relax and take a cool dip into some hot summer reads.  

Burke among Women of Impact selected for Your Indelible Mark training

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BCHS's Jessie Burke was among 25 exceptional women leaders in health who met in Pittsburgh this month to explore their career and life goals and learn to address organizational and cultural barriers and meet life-stage challenges. The training was sponsored by Women of Impact, a group of women representing various sectors of the health care industry.   

Burke and O'Malley help National Domestic Violence Hotline

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Professor Jessica Burke and student Teagan O'Malley (BCHS '12 '19) developed a framework for evaluating and improving the effectiveness of the National Domestic Violence Hotline, which responds to over 1000 calls for help each day. Burke and O'Malley engaged multiple stakeholders including service providers, users, and experts via a content-mapping research methodology to isolate what matters most and to establish metrics for monitoring this vit... 

Caroline Hamilton, Workforce Development Intern at Allegheny County Health Department

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"I am extremely grateful for my MPH Practicum experience and the relationships that I built during those months! The opportunity to work with programs across the entire health department...allowed me to gain insight and understanding into the process of public health program planning, implementation, and evaluation at a local public health agency. I have continued my work with the health department in various positions since the practicum and no... 

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Parker elected Hastings Center fellow 

Parker elected Hastings Center fellow

PITTWIRE - HUGEN's Lisa Parker was recently elected fellow to The Hastings Center, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization of research scholars studying ethical questions in medicine, science and technology that help inform policy, practice and public understanding. Parker, along with Robert Arnold o... (02/05/2020)
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Sabik sees decline in late stage cancer diagnoses after health reform law 

Sabik sees decline in late stage cancer diagnoses after health reform law

PITT WIRE - Advanced stage cancer diagnoses declined following health insurance expansion in Massachusetts, likely due to increased access to screening and diagnostic services that identified cancers earlier, according to new research led by health economists including HPM's Lindsay Sabik. “Colorec... (01/28/2020)
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Pittsburgh named one of the world’s smartest cities 

Pittsburgh named one of the world’s smartest cities

NEWSWEEK - Pittsburgh has been named one of the world’s smartest cities, as part of Newsweek’s 2019 Momentum Awards. Pittsburgh has undergone a dramatic environmental and technological transformation over recent years, earning its reputation as one of America's "most livable" cities, ranks among th... (01/08/2020)


Featuring the latest research, opportunities, and groundbreaking developments from CEPH-accredited schools and programs of public health. Review theFriday Letter submission guidelines then share your story ideas via publichealth.pitt.edu/share-news or contact phcomm@pitt.edu. 
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El Khoudary finds heart disease risk grows as women move through menopause 

El Khoudary finds heart disease risk grows as women move through menopause

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - A marker for heart disease risk considerably worsens as women transition through menopause. Black women experience this accelerated decline earlier in menopause than their white counterparts. According EPI's Samar El Khoudary, the findings add to growing evidence that menopaus... (02/10/2020)
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Sabik finds decline in advanced stage cancer diagnoses following health reform law 

Sabik finds decline in advanced stage cancer diagnoses following health reform law

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Advanced stage cancer diagnoses declined following health insurance expansion in Massachusetts, likely due to increased access to screening and diagnostic services that identified cancers earlier, according to new research led by health economists including HPM's Lindsay Sabik... (02/04/2020)
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Miller's research proves program effective in preventing dating violence with middle school students 

Miller's research proves program effective in preventing dating violence with middle school students

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Coaching Boys Into Men, a program that seeks to prevent dating violence and sexual assault, reduces abusive behaviors among middle school male athletes toward their female peers, according to clinical trial results published in JAMA Pediatrics. The trial, examining the short- ... (01/28/2020)