On June 13, The University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg Center for the Digital Future released the 11th Digital Future Project Report, the longest continuing study of its kind, which includes findings on more than 180 issues that explore the views and behavior of Internet users and non-users. The 2013 report features new questions about negative online attention (bullying, harassment, and unwanted sexual attention), the impact of mobile devices, and a closer examination of the “Millennial Rift;” the vast differences between how Millennials (age 18-34) and non-Millennials use online sites and services. A press release with highlights from the report is available, and the complete report is available for downloading.
Archive for the ‘News & Reports’ Category
The earlier, commonly used term “novel coronavirus” or “NCoV” is being superseded by the newly designated term “Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV).” The Coronavirus Study Group, International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses, announced the new terminology, which is being adopted by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other groups. When searching for information on this virus, it may be useful to use both the old and new terms, as well as other terms that have been used to describe the virus; including human betacoronavirus 2c EMC, human betacoronavirus 2c England-Qatar, human betacoronavirus 2C Jordan-N3, or betacoronavirus England 1. One caveat is that searching PubMed with the term “coronavirus” will retrieve many citations related to the 2002-03 SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) outbreak, since the SARS virus and MERS-CoV are both coronaviruses. Following are key resources for tracking MERS-CoV news:
- CDC’s comprehensive home page on Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)
- CDC Travel Health Notices: A Novel Coronavirus Called “MERS-CoV” in the Arabian Peninsula
- World Health Organization home page on Coronavirus Infections
- “Latest News” on the home page for the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), University of Minnesota
- ProMED-mail, from the International Society for Infectious Diseases, posts frequent updates
- WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean home page on Surveillance, Forecasting and Response: Outbreaks
- WHO Regional Office for Europe home page on Influenza: Coronavirus Infections
- European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control home page on Coronavirus Infections “What’s New”
- HealthMap “Coronavirus Surveillance”
On September 10, 2012, the Action Alliance, along with the U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Regina Benjamin, released the revised National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (NSSP). The revised strategy emphasizes the role every American can play in protecting their friends, family members, and colleagues from suicide. It also provides guidance for schools, businesses, health systems, clinicians, and many other sectors that takes into account nearly a decade of research and other advancements in the field since the last strategy was published.
The NSSP features 13 goals and 60 objectives, with the themes that suicide prevention should:
- Foster positive public dialogue; counter shame, prejudice, and silence; and build public support for suicide prevention;
- Address the needs of vulnerable groups, be tailored to the cultural and situational contexts in which they are offered, and seek to eliminate disparities;
- Be coordinated and integrated with existing efforts addressing health and behavioral health, and ensure continuity of care;
- Promote changes in systems, policies, and environments that will support and facilitate the prevention of suicide and related problems;
- Bring together public health and behavioral health;
- Promote efforts to reduce access to lethal means among individuals with identified suicide risks;
- Apply the most up-to-date knowledge base for suicide prevention.
The overview, full report, fact sheet, and public service announcement are available on the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention website.
What is a Health Literate Organization?
In January 2012, participants in a workgroup of the Institutes of Medicine (IOM) Roundtable on Health Literacy published a discussion paper titled “Attributes of a Health Literate Organization.”
This paper describes ten attributes of a health literate organization, with examples for each attribute. Health literate organizations will make it “easier for people to navigate, understand, and use information and services to take care of their health.”
The authors underscore the importance of addressing health literacy at an organizational level, along with guidelines for various types of health care organizations. The paper concludes with a list of highly relevant resources that will be useful to anyone interested in this topic.
The U.S. Census Bureau has just released a 2010 Census brief, The Asian Population: 2010, showing that the Asian population grew faster than any other racial or ethnic group over the last decade, to more than 17 million, more than four times the rate of growth for the U.S. population as a whole. The report noted the population surge for those identifying as Asian, either alone or in combination with one or more other races, of 45.6% from 2000 to 2010, while those who identified as Asian alone grew by 43.3%. The total U.S. population increased by 9.7% from 2000 to 2010. The Asian alone-or-in-combination population grew by at least 30% in all states except Hawaii, which had an 11% increase. Other highlights of the report showed that the states with the highest proportions of the Asian alone-or-in-combination population were in the West and the Northeast. The Asian alone-or-in-combination population represented 57% of the total population in Hawaii. California had the next highest proportion at 15%. For U.S. cities, New York had the largest Asian alone-or-in-combination population with 1.1 million, followed by Los Angeles with 484,000 and San Jose at 327,000. Three other cities — San Francisco, San Diego, and Honolulu — had Asian alone-or-in-combination populations of more than 200,000 people. The ranking was identical for the Asian alone population. The places with a total population of 100,000 or more with the greatest proportion of the Asian alone-or-in-combination population were Honolulu at 68%, and nine California cities; including Daly City (58%), Fremont (55%), Sunnyvale (44%), Irvine (43%), Santa Clara (41%), Garden Grove (39%), Torrance (38%), San Francisco (36%) and San Jose (35%). The rising Asian population was due mainly to immigration arrivals from throughout the Asian Pacific region and Indian subcontinent. Additional information is available from the U.S. Census news release.
Midday at the Oasis is held monthly on the third Wednesday of the month at 1 pm Pacific Time. The sessions are recorded and captioned for accessibility. The previous sessions are listed on our Archive page.
The next Midday will be on February 15th. The speaker is Caitlin Sticco, an NLM 2nd year Associate Fellow, who will cover the development of a prototype tool for partially automating gene indexing called the Gene Indexing Assistant.
Future Midday topics will cover Evidenced-based Practice, e-Science and PubMed Health. To suggest a topic, send an email to Kay Deeney, Educational Services Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Institute of Medicine of the National Academies has released a new report, Adverse Effects of Vaccines: Evidence and Causality. This IOM report has received a lot of press through a Reuters article by Julie Steenhuysen. The IOM reviewed a list of adverse events associated with eight vaccines to evaluate the scientific evidence about the event-vaccine relationship. They found that side effects or “adverse effects” associated with some vaccines were generally very rare or minor, and some adverse events following a vaccine may be due to coincidence and are not caused by the vaccine. As Steenhuysen put it, “vaccines [are] largely safe”.
“Adverse Effects of Vaccines: Evidence and Causality“, is available for free, along with all National Academies Press PDF books and reports.
Publishers have been shifting their journal publishing model from print to electronic journals over the past decade. The online availability of full-text articles proved very attractive to library patrons as medical students, clinicians, and researchers could get immediate access to their preferred titles from their desktops. Since 2000, medical libraries throughout the United States have increasingly shifted their journal subscriptions from the traditional print to the electronic journal version to meet user expectations of immediate access to material 24 hours a day.
While the shift to electronic journals has eased the pressure on the limited physical space in libraries, libraries increasingly have come under pressure to give up physical space to other areas of their parent organizations. As a result, libraries have had to discard the print holdings of some, many or all of their journal titles – limiting them to the years/volumes available online.
Some publishers have been working on converting the earlier print issues to electronic format through various means, but not all titles, and not all volumes. Libraries with a current subscription to the electronic version generally still have to purchase these backfiles of scanned print volumes – regardless of their previous print subscription. Furthermore, future access to backfiles at some publisher sites cannot be guaranteed.
The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) and the National Library of Medicine (NLM) are working to ensure the preservation and continued access to the historical literature through a new national cooperative medical journals print retention program. For the entire article about the national cooperative medical journals print retention program, please visit the NLM Technical Bulletin.
Valerie Florance, PhD, Director of NLM’s Division of Extramural Programs, was featured in a March 9, 2011 article in NLM in Focus. Extramural Programs is the only part of NLM authorized to award grants. In 2010, NLM made 185 awards, totaling nearly $50 million in a mix of new and continuing grants. Forty-one of the new awards, totaling $37 million, were made with American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds.
In the interview, Dr. Florance discusses the goals of NLM’s extramural programs, the five types of NLM grants available, future directions for the field of biomedical informatics, and how librarians fit into that vision. She also addresses outcomes-based measurement of grant success.
NLM in Focus is an electronic newsletter featuring behind-the-scenes looks at the National Library of Medicine, and showcasing its programs and services, research projects, and staff talents. RSS subscriptions are available for NLM in Focus, to provide notification whenever new stories are posted. More information is available on the FAQ page.
In spite of major budget challenges and rising demand for public health care programs, states undertook significant, wide-ranging efforts to lay a foundation for health reform, according to the 2011 State of the States report titled, Laying the Foundation for Health Reform.
State of the States: Laying the Foundation for Health Reform takes an in-depth look at state health policy efforts in 2010 and provides insights and lessons learned on:
- Establishing committees and task forces to study the impact of the Affordable Care Act and develop strategic plans for responding to its provisions;
- Implementing state-based pre-existing condition insurance plans;
- Working with insurance carriers and the public to implement insurance market reforms included in the ACA;
- Improving premium rate review processes and considering the impact of medical loss ratio requirements;
- Collecting data and planning for state-based health insurance exchanges;
- Reducing costs and improving outreach and enrollment efforts in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program; and
- Undertaking efforts to improve the health care delivery system and promote population health.
This report is a valuable guide for state policymakers—it highlights the efforts of states that have made early achievements in implementing the Affordable Care Act as well as the accomplishments of innovators who have sought to control costs and improve the quality of health care for their residents.
The report is free. Visit http://www.statecoverage.org/stateofthestates2011/ for your copy.