Optimal mobility, defined as relative ease and freedom of movement in all of its forms, is central to healthy aging. Mobility is a significant consideration for research, practice, and policy in aging and public health. We examined the public health burdens of mobility disability, with a particular focus on leading public health interventions to enhance walking and driving, and the challenges and opportunities for public health action. We propose an integrated mobility agenda, which draws on the lived experience of older adults. New strategies for research, practice, and policy are needed to move beyond categorical promotion programs in walking and driving to establish a comprehensive program to enhance safe mobility in all its forms.
In 2001, Maryland’s court of appeals was asked to decide whether researchers at Johns Hopkins University had engaged in unethical research on children. During the 1990s, Johns Hopkins’s Kennedy Krieger Institute had studied 108 African American children, aged 6 months to 6 years, to find an inexpensive and “practical” means to ameliorate lead poisoning. We have outlined the arguments in the case and the conundrum faced by public health researchers as they confront new threats to our health from environmental and industrial insults. We examined the case in light of contemporary public health ideology, which prioritizes harm reduction over the historical goals of prevention. As new synthetic toxins—such as bisphenyl A, polychlorinated biphenyls, other chlorinated hydrocarbons, tobacco, vinyl, and asbestos—are discovered to be biologically disruptive and disease producing at low levels, lead provides a window into the troubling dilemmas public health will have to confront in the future.
Indigenous populations have been identified as vulnerable to climate change. This framing, however, is detached from the diverse geographies of how people experience, understand, and respond to climate-related health outcomes, and overlooks nonclimatic determinants. I reviewed research on indigenous health and climate change to capture place-based dimensions of vulnerability and broader determining factors. Studies focused primarily on Australia and the Arctic, and indicated significant adaptive capacity, with active responses to climate-related health risks. However, nonclimatic stresses including poverty, land dispossession, globalization, and associated sociocultural transitions challenge this adaptability. Addressing geographic gaps in existing studies alongside greater focus on indigenous conceptualizations on and approaches to health, examination of global–local interactions shaping local vulnerability, enhanced surveillance, and an evaluation of policy support opportunities are key foci for future research.
Public health readiness has increased at all jurisdictional levels because of increased sensitivity to threats. Since 2001, with billions of dollars invested to bolster the public health system’s capacity, the public expects that public health will identify the etiology of and respond to events more rapidly. However, when etiologies are unknown at the onset of the investigation but interventions must be implemented, public health practitioners must benefit from past investigations’ lessons to strengthen preparedness for emerging threats.
In the United States and Canada, pine forest ecosystems are being dramatically
affected by an unprecedented pine beetle infestation attributed to climate
change. Both decreased frequency of extremely cold days and warmer winter
temperature averages have led to an enphytotic devastating millions of acres of
pine forest. The associated ecosystem disruption has the potential to cause
significant health impacts from a range of exposures, including increased runoff
and water turbidity, forest fires, and loss of ecosystem services. We review
direct and indirect health impacts and possible prevention strategies. The pine
beetle infestation highlights the need for public health to adopt an ecological,
systems-oriented view to anticipate the full range of potential health impacts
from climate change and facilitate effective planned adaptation.
Arthritis is highly prevalent and is the leading cause of disability among older
adults in the United States owing to the aging of the population and increases
in the prevalence of risk factors (e.g., obesity). Arthritis will play a large
role in the health-related quality of life, functional independence, and
disability of older adults in the upcoming decades. We have emphasized the role
of the public health system in reducing the impact of this large and growing
public health problem, and we have presented priority public health actions.
Most diseases, injuries, and other health conditions experienced by working people are multifactorial, especially as the workforce ages. Evidence supporting the role of work and personal risk factors in the health of working people is frequently underused in developing interventions. Achieving a longer, healthy working life requires a comprehensive preventive approach. To help develop such an approach, we evaluated the influence of both occupational and personal risk factors on workforce health. We present 32 examples illustrating 4 combinatorial models of occupational hazards and personal risk factors (genetics, age, gender, chronic disease, obesity, smoking, alcohol use, prescription drug use). Models that address occupational and personal risk factors and their interactions can improve our understanding of health hazards and guide research and interventions.
Public health arguments for collecting hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) data, particularly in clinical settings, should be reframed to place more emphasis on nonmedical determinants of population health. We compare individual- with population-level interpretations of HbA1c titers. This comparison reveals that public health researchers need to pay close attention to diagnostic tests and their uses, including rhetorical uses. We also synthesize historical and current evidence to map out 2 possible scenarios for the future. In the first scenario, prevention efforts emphasize primary care and focus almost entirely downstream. The second scenario anticipates downstream interventions but also upstream interventions targeting environments. Our analysis adapts actor–network theory to strategic planning and forecasting in public health.
China ambitiously promised to provide safe, effective, and affordable health care services to all citizens. However, the national strategies for enhancing health remain patchy, and the policy frameworks to empower and inspire individuals and communities to pursue a healthy lifestyle are largely fragmented. The incoherency is well epitomized by China’s failure to implement key parts of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control treaty. We seek to advance constructive debate on the health care reform and national health development in China.
Health-related research is increasingly drawing on novel sources of online data,
such as crowdsourced information about disease outbreaks, consumer-supplied
information provided to health or wellness Web sites, Internet search queries
about personal health, and social network postings that identify health
Translational research is needed to leverage discoveries from the frontiers of genome science to improve public health. So far, public health researchers have largely ignored genetic discoveries, and geneticists have ignored important aspects of population health science. This mutual neglect should end. In this article, we discuss 3 areas where public health researchers can help to advance translation: (1) risk assessment: investigate genetic profiles as components in composite risk assessments; (2) targeted intervention: conduct life-course longitudinal studies to understand when genetic risks manifest in development and whether intervention during sensitive periods can have lasting effects; and (3) improved understanding of environmental causation: collaborate with geneticists on gene–environment interaction research. We illustrate with examples from our own research on obesity and smoking.
By 2050, nearly 1 in 5 Americans (19%) will be an immigrant, including Hispanics, Blacks, and Asians, compared to the 1 in 8 (12%) in 2005. They will vary in the extent to which they are at risk for mental health disorders. Given this increase in cultural diversity within the United States and costly population health disparities across cultural groups, it is essential to develop a more comprehensive understanding of how culture affects basic psychological and biological mechanisms. We examine these basic mechanisms that underlie population disparities in mental health through cultural neuroscience. We discuss the challenges to and opportunities for cultural neuroscience research to determine sociocultural and biological factors that confer risk for and resilience to mental health disorders across the globe.
The categorization of variables can stigmatize populations, which is ethically problematic and threatens the central purpose of public health: to improve population health and reduce health inequities. How social variables (e.g., behavioral risks for HIV) are categorized can reinforce stigma and cause unintended harms to the populations practitioners and researchers strive to serve.
Daily public health responses are threatened by the inadequate capacity of public health agencies. A 2012 Institute of Medicine report defined a package of foundational capabilities that support all programs and services within a health department. Standardizing foundational capabilities may help address the increasing disparity in health department performance nationally.
Electronic transmission of protected health information has become pervasive in research, clinical, and public health investigations, posing substantial risk to patient privacy. From clinical genetic screenings to publication of data in research studies, these activities have the potential to disclose identity, medical conditions, and hereditary data. To enable an era of personalized medicine, many research studies are attempting to correlate individual clinical outcomes with genomic data, leading to thousands of new investigations. Critical to the success of many of these studies is research participation by individuals who are willing to share their genotypic and clinical data with investigators, necessitating methods and policies that preserve privacy with such disclosures. We explore quantitative models that allow research participants, patients and investigators to fully understand these complex privacy risks when disclosing medical data. This modeling will improve the informed consent and risk assessment process, for both demographic and medical data, each with distinct domain-specific scenarios. We first discuss the disclosure risk for genomic data, investigating both the risk of re-identification for SNPs and mutations, as well as the disclosure impact on family members. Next...
This study evaluated the effects of a Leisure and Well-Being Model (LWM) psychosocial intervention on arterial health, measured by arterial stiffness and thickness, in 82 children aged 10-13 (n=41; intervention, n=41; control) over one year. The intervention was to provide children with the awareness, skill development, and application of positive emotion, personal strengths, coping, and free-time vitality. Results showed no change in arterial health for children exposed to the intervention compared to controls. However, a significant systolic blood pressure decrease was found in children exposed to the intervention and increased in those of the control group (F (1, 73) = 4.085, p = 0.047). This is the first study to show that a psychosocial intervention has a positive effect on childhood cardiovascular health within one year. Hence, if exposed for-or followed for- a longer period of time, it may be possible to see further improvements in arterial health.
Youth are critical partners in health promotion, but the process of training young people to become meaningfully involved is challenging. This mixed-methods evaluation considered the impact of a leadership camp in preparing 42 grade seven students to become peer health leaders in a ‘heart health’ initiative. The experiences of participants and their sense of agency were explored. Data were collected from pre and post camp surveys, focus groups, student journals and researcher observations. Findings indicate that relationships with peers and adults were key to agency development, and participants appeared to broaden their perspectives on the meanings of ‘health’ and ‘leadership.’ Significant changes on two sub-scales of the Harter Perceived Competence Scale for Children were also found. Suggestions for practice and further research are provided.
This thesis concerns the modelling of individuals’ health over the life course, within the framework set by the now substantial international literature on the relationship between socioeconomic status and health. The focus is on people with long term illnesses and related disabilities, on inequalities in health by socioeconomic status (SES) and on the impact of health on employment. ¶ The main tool of analysis is a dynamic microsimulation model of the Australian population which tracks the demographic, socioeconomic and financial characteristics of individuals and their families over the life course. Its original form, developed at the National Centre for Socioeconomic Modelling, University of Canberra, is based on a one per cent representative sample of the Australian population (around 150,000 individuals), with a series of life course events simulated for individuals and their families up to 2050 - such as births, deaths, migration, taxes, education, labour force participation, earned income, wealth accumulation and government transfers. ...; yes
Fonte: Health Transition Centre, National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, The Australian National UniversityPublicador: Health Transition Centre, National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, The Australian National University
Tipo: Artigo de Revista CientíficaFormato: 40563 bytes; application/pdf
This paper provides an assessment and analysis of the increasing rates of mortality among the children of low-income African-American families in the United States and the intensifying problem of improper health care that seems to have given rise to it. The paper first documents the nature and determinants of the problem and then addresses the issue of policy prescriptions for eradicating the dilemma. The primary problem underlying the health-care access of lowincome African-Americans is that there is neither a system of universal entitlement that ties their health care in with the rest of the population nor an explicit and comprehensive strategy for care outside the dominant private system.; no