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Archive for the ‘Public Health’ Category

National Influenza Vaccination Week

Thursday, December 1st, 2016

What is the best way to reduce the risk of the flu? That’s right, getting the flu vaccine is the easiest and best way to prevent the flu and its complications. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) everyone 6 months and older should receive an annual flu shot. Some people are at greater risk of flu related complications than others. This includes children younger than age 5 and adults 65 and older. Those who have certain medical conditions such as heart disease, liver disease, and blood disorders. Go to the CDC to see the full list of ages and health issues of those who are at increased risks.

Of course there are those who should not receive the flu shot or may be eligible to receive an alternative protection option. These include children younger than 6 months and those who are severely allergic to ingredients in the vaccine. A physician should be consulted for those who have had Guillain-Barre Syndrome, may be allergic to eggs and other ingredients in the vaccine, and those who are feeling ill. The CDC has complete information regarding those who should not receive the flu shot or consider not having it. (more…)

Your Role in the Precision Medicine Initiative Cohort Program

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

Last month, on the PNR Rendezvous, the guest speaker was Malia Fullerton, Associate Professor of Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Washington School of Medicine and Adjunct Associate Professor in the UW Departments of Epidemiology and Genome Sciences, who informed the audience in regards to the Precision Medicine Initiative Cohort Program. This program has since been renamed the All of Us Research Program. The name reflects how All of Us will come together to change the future of health care. Many in the general public may not know much or anything about the Precision Medicine Initiative and may be even less aware of the All of Us program despite the fact that the National Institutes of Health is seeking one million volunteer to participate starting early 2017.

Participating in health studies has not always been a smooth road for participants who may not always understand the release forms they are signing despite steps taken to ensure what their participation means. Sometimes these studies have led to providing information for other uses than was originally understood leading to legal steps, anger, and distrust. This has happened in some populations and communities where government relations are already fragile due to historical events.

Fullerton’s presentation provided information on some of these historical cases as a way to provide context regarding the All of Us Program. The Precision Medicine Initiative is seeking to provide unique healthcare by working towards “providing the right treatment at the right time to the right person”. Volunteers are encourage to participate in the All of Us Program as a way of participating in improving the nation’s health. By voluntarily providing information through various means such as blood samples, it is hoped to that a wider range of data from more diverse groups of participants than in the past will provide better information to improve healthcare. The All of Us Program assures top security and privacy regarding the collected data of participants. (more…)

Next PNR Rendezvous – Precision Medicine

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

“Adventures in Precision Medicine: A Major Public Research Initiative and it Implications for Healthcare Consumers and Institutions” is the title of our next PNR Rendezvous webinar September 21. Malia Fullerton, Associate Professor of Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Washington School of Medicine and Adjunct Associate Professor in the UW Departments of Epidemiology and Genome Sciences, as well as an affiliate investigator with the Public Health Sciences division of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC).  In early 2015 President Barack Obama announced an ambitious research initiative aimed at generating data needed to usher in a new era of medicine, one that will deliver “the right treatments, at the right time, every time to the right person.” This project, known now as the Precision Medicine Initiative or PMI, is recently underway and seeks to enroll 1 million or more patients from around the United States.  What will healthcare consumers need to know before they decide to participate?  And how will the national effort to study specimens, medical record data, and information collected by mobile health technologies from thousands of patients impact healthcare delivery?

Public librarians and those working in healthcare will find this an informative session as Precision Medicine becomes the primary delivery of healthcare. This impacts not just researchers and clinicians but the general public as healthcare consumers.

When: September 21, 1:00pm Pacific Time, Noon Alaska Time, 2:00pm Mountain Time (more…)

Free Online CE Classes: PubMed for Librarians – registration is open

Friday, August 19th, 2016

If your institution or organization includes programs in the health sciences, involves the health of the public, or works with biomedical researchers, most likely PubMed is a resource often used or should be considered for their work. Unfamiliar with PubMed or want a refresher course so you can better serve your colleagues? Consider taking one or all of the classes offered by our National Training Center.

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine Training Office (NTO) is offering three free online PubMed CE classes in September in a series called PubMed for Librarians.

  1. Introduction to PubMed: September 7, 2016 (9:00am Pacific Time)
  1. MeSH: September 14, 2016 (9:00am Pacific Time)
  1. Automatic Term Mapping: September 21, 2016 (9:00am Pacific Time)

Read a description for all three classes and find the link to the registration page here: https://nnlm.gov/ntc/pml/

PubMed is a free resource that is developed and maintained by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), at the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), located at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). PubMed includes free access to MEDLINE, the NLM database of indexed citations and abstracts to medical, nursing, dental, veterinary, health care, and preclinical sciences journal articles as well as additional selected life sciences journals not in MEDLINE.

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy Visits Seattle

Thursday, August 4th, 2016
 Molly Carney, Executive Director at Evergreen Treatment Services, meets with Surgeon General Vivek Murthy

Molly Carney, Executive Director at Evergreen Treatment Services, meets with Surgeon General Vivek Murthy.

This is a guest post from Jim Anderson, Physician Assistant and Dispensary Manager at Evergreen Treatment Services, a PNR Network member.  If you would like to write a guest post please contact Patricia Devine at devine@uw.edu.

On Surgeon General Vivek Murthy’s recent stop in Seattle, he visited Evergreen Treatment Services to learn more about medication assisted treatment in Seattle and the opioid epidemic in the Pacific NW and Alaska. Evergreen Treatment Services has been working to transform the lives of individuals and their communities through innovative and effective addiction and social services in Western Washington since 1973.

The Surgeon General also visited the Seattle Police Department, to hear about their efforts to address the opioid epidemic and their successful use of naloxone in reversing 10 overdoses recently. Naloxone is provided for patrolling officers, and its use among police departments is rapidly spreading.

Murthy also spent time with an Opioid Task Force, a group made up of a variety of representatives from governmental and medical agencies and institutions, with a goal of addressing the opioid epidemic, including both heroin and other opioid medications.

While in Seattle, Murthy described what he believes to be the need to view opioid addiction as a chronic disease, and to respond rapidly to known opioid addiction the same way that the medical community responds to other chronic diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The Seattle Times quoted him sharing his thoughts about this with the Seattle Police Department leaders:

“For too many people in America, addiction is a character flaw or a moral failing, but that’s not the case. We have to help people see addiction for what it is, which is a chronic illness of the brain that we have to treat with the same urgency, compassion and skill that we would treat diabetes or heart disease. That shift is going to take all of us.”

2016 Summer Reading Theme of Wellness, Fitness, and Sports

Monday, April 25th, 2016

This year’s summer reading slogan from the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSL) is focused on health and wellness. Many public libraries have already begun their program planning. The National Library of Medicine health resources are a great way to help in the planning and supplementing of programs and activities following this theme.

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MedlinePlus covers a wide range of topics including Healthy Living, Exercise and Physical Fitness, Sports Safety, Child Nutrition and more.  MedlinePlus even has pages of health topics focused specifically on children’s and teen health topics and specific topic pages written just for teens and just for children. These health topic pages include health tips that can be incorporated into health and wellness activities and programs.  Your programs can include collaborating with local organizations and professionals who focus on health and wellness whether it is to lead a program on cooking for weight loss, learning about preventing concussions in school sports or leading a yoga class. These MedlinePlus pages can help supplement such programs in the form of handouts, special webpages with links, newsletters or social media.

Summer reading isn’t just for kids. NIH Senior Health is another great resource for information to include on programs for older adults in your communities. MedlinePlus also have topic pages specifically for Seniors but NIH Senior Health is a great resource on its own. This resource includes ways to improve usability for those who may have visual difficulties.  The text can be made larger and the web page contrast can be changed to make it easier to view.  Videos are also included on several health topics so if reading is difficult this might be an alternative. Information about the importance of health through exercise includes videos including videos of exercises to try.

The National Institute on Aging has an extensive amount of information for Seniors (more…)