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Implications of Health Literacy for Public Health: Workshop Summary (2014)

October 1, 2014 Comments off

Implications of Health Literacy for Public Health: Workshop Summary (2014)
Source: Institute of Medicine

Health literacy is the degree to which individuals can obtain, process, and understand the basic health information and services they need to make appropriate health decisions. Nearly half of all American adults – 90 million people – have inadequate health literacy to navigate the health care system. Implications of Health Literacy for Public Health is the summary of a workshop convened by the Institute of Medicine Roundtable on Health Literacy in November 2013 that focused on the implications of health literacy for the mission and essential services of public health. The workshop featured the presentation of a commissioned paper on health literacy activities under way in public health organizations. Other presentations examined the implications of health literacy for the mission and essential services of public health, for example, community health and safety, disease prevention, disaster management, or health communication. This report includes the commissioned paper and summaries of the workshop presentations.

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Confronting Commercial Sexual Exploitation and Sex Trafficking of Minors in the United States: A Guide for the Health Care Sector

September 29, 2014 Comments off

Confronting Commercial Sexual Exploitation and Sex Trafficking of Minors in the United States: A Guide for the Health Care Sector
Source: Institute of Medicine, National Research Council

Every day in the United States, children and adolescents are victims of commercial sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. These are not only illegal activities, but also forms of violence and abuse that result in immediate and long-term physical, mental, and emotional harm to victims and survivors. In 2013, the Institute of Medicine/National Research Council released the report Confronting Commercial Sexual Exploitation and Sex Trafficking of Minors in the United States. The report found that the United States is in the very early stages of recognizing, understanding, and developing solutions for these crimes.

Health care professionals need to be able to recognize past, ongoing, or potential victimization by commercial sexual exploitation and sex trafficking among the youth in their care. Failure to do so increases the possibility that those at risk may become victims, and victims may miss opportunities for assistance and remain vulnerable to further exploitation and abuse.

This Guide for the Health Care Sector provides a summary of information from the original report that is most relevant to individuals who and settings that see children and adolescents for prevention and treatment of injury, illness, and disease. This includes physicians, nurses, advanced practice nurses, physician assistants, mental health professionals, and dentists who practice in settings such as emergency departments, urgent care, primary care clinics, adolescent medicine clinics, school clinics, shelters, community health centers, and dental clinics among others.

This guide includes definitions of key terms and an overview of risk factors and consequences; barriers to identifying victims and survivors as well as opportunities for overcoming these barriers; examples of current practices in the health care sector; and recommendations aimed at identifying, preventing, and responding to these crimes.

The Impacts of the Affordable Care Act on Preparedness Resources and Programs: Workshop Summary (2014)

September 26, 2014 Comments off

The Impacts of the Affordable Care Act on Preparedness Resources and Programs: Workshop Summary (2014)
Source: Institute of Medicine

Many of the elements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into effect in 2014, and with the establishment of many new rules and regulations, there will continue to be significant changes to the United States health care system. It is not clear what impact these changes will have on medical and public health preparedness programs around the country. Although there has been tremendous progress since 2005 and Hurricane Katrina, there is still a long way to go to ensure the health security of the Country. There is a commonly held notion that preparedness is separate and distinct from everyday operations, and that it only affects emergency departments. But time and time again, catastrophic events challenge the entire health care system, from acute care and emergency medical services down to the public health and community clinic level, and the lack of preparedness of one part of the system places preventable stress on other components. The implementation of the ACA provides the opportunity to consider how to incorporate preparedness into all aspects of the health care system.

The Impacts of the Affordable Care Act on Preparedness Resources and Programs is the summary of a workshop convened by the Institute of Medicine’s Forum on Medical and Public Health Preparedness for Catastrophic Events in November 2013 to discuss how changes to the health system as a result of the ACA might impact medical and public health preparedness programs across the nation. This report discusses challenges and benefits of the Affordable Care Act to disaster preparedness and response efforts around the country and considers how changes to payment and reimbursement models will present opportunities and challenges to strengthen disaster preparedness and response capacities.

Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life

September 22, 2014 Comments off

Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life
Source: Institute of Medicine

For patients and their loved ones, no care decisions are more profound than those made near the end of life. For the millions of Americans who work in or with the health care sector—including clinicians, clergy, caregivers, and support staff—providing high-quality care for people who are nearing the end of life is a matter of professional commitment and responsibility. Health sys­tem managers, payers, and policy makers, likewise, have a responsibility to ensure that end-of-life care is compassionate, affordable, sustainable, and of the best quality possible.

A substantial body of evidence shows that broad improvements to end-of-life care are within reach. In Dying in America, a consensus report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM), a committee of experts finds that improving the quality and availability of medical and social services for patients and their families could not only enhance quality of life through the end of life, but may also contribute to a more sustainable care system.

The Cost of Inaction for Young Children Globally: Workshop Summary (2014)

September 18, 2014 Comments off

The Cost of Inaction for Young Children Globally: Workshop Summary (2014)
Source: Institute of Medicine (IOM); National Research Council

The Cost of Inaction for Young Children Globally is the summary of a workshop hosted by the Institute of Medicine Forum on Investing in Young Children Globally in April 2014 to focus on investments in young children and the cost of inaction. Participants explored existing, new, and innovative science and research from around the world to translate this evidence into sound and strategic investments in policies and practices that will make a difference in the lives of children and their caregivers. This report discusses intersections across health, education, nutrition, living conditions, and social protection and how investments of economic, natural, social, and other resources can sustain or promote early childhood development and well-being.

Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs

September 11, 2014 Comments off

Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs
Source: Institute of Medicine

Since the creation of the Medicare and Medicaid programs in 1965, the public has provided tens of billions of dollars to fund graduate medical education (GME), the period of residency and fellowship that is provided to physicians after they receive a medical degree. Although the scale of govern­ment support for physician training far exceeds that for any other profession, there is a striking absence of transparency and accountability in the GME financing system for producing the types of physicians that the nation needs.

The IOM formed an expert committee to conduct an independent review of the governance and financing of the GME system. The 21-member IOM committee concludes that there is an unquestionable imperative to assess and optimize the effectiveness of the public’s investment in GME. In its report, Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs, the committee recommends significant changes to GME financ­ing and governance to address current deficiencies and better shape the phy­sician workforce for the future. The IOM report provides an initial road­map for reforming the Medicare GME payment system and building an infrastructure that can drive more strategic investment in the nation’s physician workforce.

Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs

August 19, 2014 Comments off

Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs
Source: Institute of Medicine

Since the creation of the Medicare and Medicaid programs in 1965, the public has provided tens of billions of dollars to fund graduate medical education (GME), the period of residency and fellowship that is provided to physicians after they receive a medical degree. Although the scale of govern­ment support for physician training far exceeds that for any other profession, there is a striking absence of transparency and accountability in the GME financing system for producing the types of physicians that the nation needs.

The IOM formed an expert committee to conduct an independent review of the governance and financing of the GME system. The 21-member IOM committee concludes that there is an unquestionable imperative to assess and optimize the effectiveness of the public’s investment in GME. In its report, Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs, the committee recommends significant changes to GME financ­ing and governance to address current deficiencies and better shape the phy­sician workforce for the future. The IOM report provides an initial road­map for reforming the Medicare GME payment system and building an infrastructure that can drive more strategic investment in the nation’s physician workforce.

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