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What Is Child Welfare? A Guide for Disaster Preparedness and Response Professionals

May 5, 2015 Comments off

What Is Child Welfare? A Guide for Disaster Preparedness and Response Professionals
Source: Child Welfare Information Gateway (HHS)

In preparing and responding to the safety and well-being of children and families during all phases of disaster, child welfare and disaster preparedness and response (DPR) professionals work most effectively in partnership. This guide provides an overview of child welfare, describes how DPR and child welfare professionals can support one another’s efforts, and lists resources for more information.

Stressful Life Events Experienced by Women in the Year Before Their Infants’ Births — United States, 2000–2010

May 4, 2015 Comments off

Stressful Life Events Experienced by Women in the Year Before Their Infants’ Births — United States, 2000–2010
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (CDC)

Epidemiologic studies suggest that prenatal stress is associated with preterm birth, low birth weight (1–3), and peripartum anxiety and depressive symptoms (4). The most recent population-based study, assessing trends in stress experienced in the year before an infant’s birth, used 1990–1995 data from 11 states participating in the Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) (5). That study found that 64% of women surveyed reported experiencing at least one stressful life event (SLE), although the prevalence declined slightly over the study period. PRAMS data for 2000–2010 were used to examine more recent trends and to determine if the prevalence of SLEs has continued to decrease in the past decade. Additionally, 2010 data were used to determine the extent that maternal demographics and state of residence are associated with SLEs. This report describes the results of those analyses, which found that most women in the sample reported experiencing ≥1 SLEs in the year before their infant’s birth, although the prevalence of experiencing SLEs decreased during 2000–2010. In 2010, based on data from 27 states, 70.2% of women reported ≥1 SLEs. The mean number of SLEs was 1.81, ranging from 1.41 in New York City to 2.26 in Oklahoma. SLEs were most frequently financial. Prevalence of SLEs varied by PRAMS reporting site and maternal demographics. Younger, less educated, unmarried, and Medicaid-covered women had the highest prevalence of SLEs. Public health practitioners and clinicians can use the information on trends and risk factors for SLEs to determine the likelihood that pregnant women might benefit from screening for stressors during pregnancy.

Health Care — 2014 National Quality and Disparities Report

May 1, 2015 Comments off

2014 National Quality and Disparities Report
Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Insurance rates improved substantially after individuals were able to obtain coverage through provisions of the Affordable Care Act, and the gains in access to care were greater among black and Hispanic adults than whites, according to the 2014 National Quality and Disparities Report released today by HHS’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

This annual report on the nation’s health care includes a section on measures of access to care that for the first time cover a period after implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplaces. Data covering January to June 2014 show that the overall rate of “uninsurance”—a measure of access to care—decreased substantially to 15.6 percent in the second quarter of 2014 among those age 18 to 64 (from a high of 22.3 percent in 2010). Because the data run through June 2014, they capture enrollment gains only from the first open enrollment period in the Health Insurance Marketplaces. The second open enrollment period began on November 15, 2014, and is not captured in the report.

The decline in uninsurance was greater among blacks and Hispanics, who historically have had higher uninsurance rates compared with whites. For blacks, the uninsurance rate decreased from 24.6 percent in the last quarter of 2013 to 15.9 percent in the first half of 2014. During the same period, the uninsurance rate dropped from 40.3 percent to 33.2 percent for Hispanics, and the rate declined from 14.0 percent to 11.1 percent for whites.

HHS issues final recommendation for community water fluoridation

April 28, 2015 Comments off

HHS issues final recommendation for community water fluoridation
Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services today released the final Public Health Service (PHS) recommendation for the optimal fluoride level in drinking water to prevent tooth decay. The new recommendation is for a single level of 0.7 milligrams of fluoride per liter of water. It updates and replaces the previous recommended range (0.7 to 1.2 milligrams per liter) issued in 1962.

The change was recommended because Americans now have access to more sources of fluoride, such as toothpaste and mouth rinses, than they did when water fluoridation was first introduced in the United States. As a result, there has been an increase in fluorosis, which, in most cases, manifests as barely visible lacy white marking or spots on the tooth enamel. The new recommended level will maintain the protective decay prevention benefits of water fluoridation and reduce the occurrence of dental fluorosis.

State Child Welfare Agency Directors

April 23, 2015 Comments off

State Child Welfare Agency Directors
Source: Child Welfare Information Gateway

Contact information for the Child Welfare Agency Directors in each State and Territory.

Drug-poisoning Deaths Involving Heroin: United States, 2000–2013

April 23, 2015 Comments off

Drug-poisoning Deaths Involving Heroin: United States, 2000–2013
Source: National Center for Health Statistics

Key findings
Data from the National Vital Statistics System (Mortality)

  • From 2000 through 2013, the age-adjusted rate for drug-poisoning deaths involving heroin nearly quadrupled from 0.7 deaths per 100,000 in 2000 to 2.7 deaths per 100,000 in 2013. Most of the increase occurred after 2010.
  • The number of drug-poisoning deaths involving heroin was nearly four times higher for men (6,525 deaths) than women (1,732 deaths) in 2013.
  • In 2000, non-Hispanic black persons aged 45–64 had the highest rate for drug-poisoning deaths involving heroin (2.0 per 100,000). In 2013, non-Hispanic white persons aged 18–44 had the highest rate (7.0 per 100,000).
  • From 2000 through 2013, the age-adjusted rate for drug-poisoning deaths involving heroin increased for all regions of the country, with the greatest increase seen in the Midwest.

Progress With Electronic Health Record Adoption Among Emergency and Outpatient Departments: United States, 2006–2011

April 18, 2015 Comments off

Progress With Electronic Health Record Adoption Among Emergency and Outpatient Departments: United States, 2006–2011
Source: National Center for Health Statistics

Key findings

Data from the 2006–2011 National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey

  • In 2011, 84% of hospital emergency departments (EDs) used an electronic health record (EHR) system.
  • Adoption of a basic EHR system with a specific set of functionalities by EDs increased from 19% in 2007 to 54% in 2011.
  • In 2011, 73% of hospital outpatient departments (OPDs) used an EHR system, up from 29% in 2006.
  • Adoption of a basic EHR system with a specific set of functionalities by OPDs increased from 9% in 2007 to 57% in 2011.
  • From 2007 through 2011, adoption of Stage 1 Meaningful Use objectives by EDs and OPDs increased.In 2011, 14% of EDs and 16% of OPDs had EHR technology able to support nine Stage 1 Meaningful Use objectives.
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