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Archive for the ‘Public Health’ Category

AHRQ Issues New Comparative Effectiveness Review!

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare, Research and Quality (AHRQ) recently released its Comparative Effectiveness Review Improving Cultural Competence to Reduce Health Disparities for Priority Populations. This review examines existing system-, clinic-, provider-, and individual-level interventions to improve culturally appropriate health care for people with disabilities; lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) populations; and racial/ethnic minority populations.

The National Library of Medicine’s Outreach and Special Populations Branch (OSPB) works to reduce health disparities within underserved and special populations by improving access to accurate, quality health information. OSPB manages Minority Health Information Outreach projects for specific populations, such as  American Indian Health Web Portal for Native Americans and HealthReach for refugee populations.

NLM Welcomes Applications to the Michael E. DeBakey Fellowship in the History of Medicine

Earlier this year, the National Library of Medicine announced its receipt of a generous gift from The DeBakey Medical Foundation to support enhanced access to the Michael E. DeBakey Archives at the NLM and to establish the Michael E. DeBakey Fellowship in the History of Medicine. NLM is now pleased to announce the first call for applications to the Michael E. DeBakey Fellowship in the History of Medicine.

Michael E. DeBakey (1908–2008) was a legendary American surgeon, educator, and medical statesman. During a career spanning 75 years, his work transformed cardiovascular surgery, raised medical education standards, and informed national health care policy. He pioneered dozens of operative procedures such as aneurysm repair, coronary bypass, and endarterectomy, which routinely save thousands of lives each year, and performed some of the first heart transplants. His inventions included the roller pump (a key component of heart-lung machines) as well as artificial hearts and ventricular assist pumps. He was a driving force in building Houston’s Baylor University College of Medicine into a premier medical center, where he trained several generations of top surgeons from all over the world.

The Michael E. DeBakey Fellowship in the History of Medicine will support individuals in pursuing research in NLM’s Michael E. DeBakey papers, related collections held by the NLM, and the vast range of subjects which informed, or were informed by, Michael E. DeBakey’s professional career – from surgery to health care policy, medical libraries and expanding access to medical information, medical technology to medical ethics, military medicine to veteran health, humanitarianism to international diplomacy in the medical arena. Applications are invited from anyone over the age of eighteen, of any academic discipline and status. Non-U.S. citizens may apply.

Fellowships of up to $10,000 will be awarded to individual applicants, not to institutions, to help offset the costs associated with visiting and using the NLM collections, but may not be used for institutional costs or overhead (e.g. clerical costs, supplies, or other attendant project expenses). To receive consideration, all materials must be submitted via the online system, by 5:00pm EDT, September 1, 2016. Awards will be announced by the end of the calendar year.

TOXMAP now includes 2014 Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Data

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) TOXMAP resource now includes the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) 2014 National Analysis. TOXMAP maps the TRI chemicals reported to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as required by the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act (EPCRA). A complete list of EPA TRI chemicals required to be reported is also available.

Earth Day 2016 & NLM Environmental Health Resources

The health of the natural environment and human health are intrinsically linked, which is highlighted on April 22, Earth Day. The Division of Specialized Information Services (SIS) at the National Library of Medicine (NLM) offers a variety of resources to help Americans of all ages and backgrounds learn about the importance of environmental health:

  • Environmental Health for Children: Kids in grades 1-5 can learn about toxic substances in the home through the interactive ToxMystery. Middle schoolers can explore toxic substances in everyday environments through Tox Town, and they can learn about air pollution, chemicals, climate change, and water pollution through the Environmental Health Student Portal. Read about additional NLM resources for teachers and students that can be used for Earth Day Education.
  • Environmental Health for Indigenous Communities: Native American communities can find links to environmental health resources on American Indian Health. Information on the impacts of climate change on Arctic communities can be found at Arctic Health.
  • Environmental Hazards in Daily Life: Use the TOXNET collection of databases to explore the impact of toxic substances on your health. Check Haz-Map to learn about environmental hazards in the work environment, use LactMed to identify substances which nursing mothers should avoid, and use Household Products Database to learn about the health effects of common household chemicals.

Explore the Environmental Health and Toxicology homepage on the NLM website for more valuable environmental health resources.

Save the Date: 2016 Joseph Leiter NLM/MLA Lectureship on May 4!

The Annual NLM/MLA Joseph Leiter Memorial Lecture will be held this year on Wednesday, May 4, at 1:00pm ET (10:00am PDT) in the Lister Hill Auditorium at the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, MD. The two-hour lecture will also be videocast and archived by NIH. In line with the traditional Leiter Lecture theme of fostering biomedical communication, this year’s lecturer is Jonna Mazet, DVM, MPVM, PhD, who will give the presentation Emerging Infectious Diseases in the 21st Century: A Prevention paradigm for surveillance, information sharing, & health diplomacy. Dr. Mazet is professor of epidemiology and disease ecology, and executive director of the One Health Institute, at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, where she focuses on global health problem solving, especially for emerging infectious disease and conservation challenges. Currently, she is Principal Investigator for “PREDICT – Wildlife SMART Surveillance for Zoonotic Diseases of Pandemic Potential,” a part of US Agency for International Development. Her specialty is studying diseases that could jump from an animal host population to a human population, such as SARS and Ebola. She will talk about the project and how to disseminate information to relevant agencies and groups to help prevent or minimize pandemic disease from such sources.

National Environmental Education Week: April 17-23

The National Environmental Education Act of 1990 established the National Environmental Education and Training Foundation (NEEF) as an independent non-profit organization complementary to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), extending its ability to foster environmental education for all ages and in all segments of the American public. NEEF’s 12th annual National Environmental Education Week (EE Week), Greening STEM: Rooted in Math, is scheduled for April 17-23, 2016 (Earth Day is April 22). It encourages and celebrates environmental learning through events and projects across the country. You can also register an event.

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Toxicology and Environmental Health Information Program (TEHIP) provides resources related to toxicology, environmental health, and chemistry, most notably, TOXNET, an integrated database system of hazardous chemicals, toxic releases and environmental health. The Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB), a component of TOXNET, has comprehensive, peer-reviewed toxicology data for more than 5,000 chemicals. TOXMAP uses United States maps to explore data from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) and Superfund programs. The Haz-Map database contains information on the health effects of exposure to chemical and biological agents used in industry, on the job and at home.

Tox Town is a guide to toxic chemicals and environmental health issues in everyday locations. It is available in English and Spanish. The Household Products Database gives information on the potential health effects of chemicals contained in common products used inside and around the home. ToxMystery, available in English and Spanish, helps children ages 7 to 10 learn about toxic substances in the home. Tox Tutor and ToxLearn are written at the introductory college level and offer a basic introduction to toxicology.

National Public Health Week: April 4-10, 2016

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) salutes National Public Health Week, from April 4-10, 2016, an initiative of the American Public Health Association. NLM is working with PHPartners: Partners in Information Access for the Public Health Workforce to promote their mission of helping the public health workforce find and use information effectively to improve and protect the public’s health.

The Outreach and Special Populations Branch of NLM provides a variety of reliable information resources to help improve public health information access, including:

For other health information resources directed towards specific populations, visit the NLM Outreach and Special Populations Branch homepage.

April is National Minority Health Month 2016!

On April 1 the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Minority Health (OMH) launched the annual observance of National Minority Health Month. The theme this year, Accelerating Health Equity for the Nation, will promote the extraordinary efforts underway by HHS and the Obama Administration to reduce disparities, advance equity, and strengthen the health and well-being of all Americans. The OMH invites everyone across the nation to join together to raise awareness of the health disparities that continue to affect racial and ethnic minorities and to work together to accelerate health equity.

The observance of the 30th anniversary of the HHS Office of Minority Health will also begin during National Minority Health Month. Since its establishment in 1986, the OMH has served as the HHS lead agency for improving the health of racial and ethnic minority populations through the development of health policies and programs to help eliminate health disparities. On April 7 there will be a live broadcast of the HHS Equity Forum at 10:30 am PDT. Join OMH for the HHS Health Equity Forum webcast in observance of National Minority Health Month and the 30th anniversary of the HHS Office of Minority Health!

New Specialized Database Added to NCBI Zika Virus Resource Page

The NCBI Zika virus resource page has been updated with a specialized database. This database uses pipelines to annotate genes, proteins and mature peptides, and standardize sample metadata. Using this database, you can:

  • Find sequences easily using standardized annotations and normalized metadata terms.
  • Construct alignments and phylogenetic trees using a suite of online tools.
  • Download sequences and metadata in a variety of formats and create customized titles/description lines (deflines) for FASTA file downloads.

The NCBI Zika virus resource, part of the Virus Variation family of NCBI resources, provides users with a unique, metadata-driven search interface that leverages advanced data management pipelines.

Healthy People 2030 Advisory Committee Seeks Nominations: Apply by April 18!

The Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP) is seeking membership nominations for the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives for 2030. They are looking for a diverse group of nationally known experts in fields related to disease prevention and health promotion to help develop the vision, framework, and structure of Healthy People 2030. Nominations must be submitted by April 18. For more information on the nomination process, visit the Federal Register notice.