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Archive for the ‘Public Health’ Category

National Public Health Week is April 4-10

Monday, April 4th, 2016

National Public Health Week, held April 4-10, 2016, is an annual observance to recognize the contribution and importance of public health in our communities. President Obama, in his National Public Health Week proclamation of April 1, 2016, inspires Americans to bring public health into focus for future generations.  “During National Public Health Week, we join together to enhance public health–the foundation of our security and well-being–here at home and around the world. By supporting health professionals and embracing our obligations to promote public health and protect our planet, we can uphold our shared responsibility to preserve the promise of a happy and healthy life for our children and grandchildren.”

Here in the Pacific Northwest, regional public health associations have organized a number of events and communications to raise awareness of National Public Health Week. (more…)

HIV/AIDS Community Information Outreach Projects 2016

Friday, March 25th, 2016

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) is pleased to announce the solicitation of quotations from organizations and libraries to design and conduct projects for improving HIV/AIDS information access for patients and the affected community as well as their caregivers and the general public. Patients and the affected community need access to the most up-to-date and accurate health information to effectively manage and make informed decisions about their health.  Health care providers and health educators also need access to the most current information to provide the highest quality of care. NLM is committed to assisting organizations in accessing the spectrum of information resources and services that are currently available.  The NLM is particularly interested in proposals with creative and different approaches to disseminate information to populations that have a disproportionate prevalence of HIV/AIDS infections in the United States. Emphasis is on increasing the awareness and utilization of NLM online health and medical resources in the HIV/AIDS Community through the use of innovative and evidence-based projects.

Projects must involve two or more of the following information access categories:

  • Information retrieval
  • Skills development
  • Resource development and dissemination; and/or
  • Equipment Acquisition

Significance is placed upon the following types of organizations or arrangements for developing these programs:

  • Community-based organizations (CBOs) or patient advocacy groups currently providing HIV/AIDS related serves to the affected community
  • Public libraries serving communities in the provision of HIV/AIDS-related information and resources
  • Health departments or other local, municipal, or state agencies working to improve public health;  Faith-based organizations currently providing HIV/AIDS-related services and/or
  • Multi-type consortia of the above-listed organizations that may be in existence or formed specifically for this project

Awards are offered for up to $50,000.

Quotations are due to NLM on June 13, 2016. (more…)

New Dietary Guidelines

Friday, March 11th, 2016

dietary guidelinesAlready lagging on your New Year’s resolutions?  Well, spring is a time for renewal and a fresh start!  March is a great time to take a look at the recently released U.S. Dietary Guidelines and renew your resolve to eat healthier.  What are the U.S. Dietary Guidelines? Published every five years for the general public as well as public health professionals, and policy makers, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans provides food recommendations for people aged two years and older. Each edition reflects the current  nutritional science, with a focus on chronic disease prevention.

What are some of the changes from the last edition? Previous editions had focused on specific dietary components such as food groups or nutrients.  The current edition instead, emphasizes overall eating patterns, the combinations of all the foods and drinks that people consume every day.  Included in the current edition are updated guidance on topics like added sugars, sodium, and cholesterol and new information on caffeine.  This is the first edition to recommend a limit to consume less than 10 percent of calories from added sugars in order to control overall calorie intake.  On a 2,000-calorie daily diet, that’s about 12 teaspoons while most Americans typically ingest closer to 22 teaspoons a day.

Thankfully the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion done a very basic breaking down of the current focus of the new guidelines for us to follow without being too specific because as the executive summary says, “These Guidelines also embody the idea that a healthy eating pattern is not a rigid prescription, but rather, an adaptable framework in which individuals can enjoy foods that meet their personal, cultural, and traditional preferences and fit within their budget.” (more…)

Data, Clinical Outcomes, and Librarians – What’s the Connection?

Monday, February 29th, 2016

binaryheadtrimmed2What is the connection between data, clinical outcomes and the librarian?  Come and explore this connection with three of the nation’s leaders on big data and patient outcomes at the Using Data to Improve Clinical Patient Outcomes Forum on March 7, 2016.  Librarian participants will have the opportunity to explore how they can contribute to the use of clinical data mined from the electronic health record as evidence for patient care and to consider what skills they can develop to support health care organizations in the use of data. The Forum will be held in person in Seattle or Salt Lake City as well as in a live broadcast.  Registration is required.  

For more information see the website.  Professional development funding is available for PNR members.* https://nnlm.gov/data-forum
*Please register by Feb. 29th is you are seeking Professional Development funds.
Join us on Twitter at #NNLMdataforum

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (Feb. 21-27)

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

This week is National Eating Disorders Awareness Week.  Why focus the focus on eating disorders? According to the National Association of Anorexia and Related Disorders (ANAD),  over one-half of teenage girls and nearly one-third of teenage boys use unhealthy weight control behaviors such as skipping meals, fasting, smoking cigarettes, vomiting, and taking laxatives.  ANAD also reports that eating disorders are the number one fatal mental health disorder. Mortality rates can vary and part of the reason why is that the causes of reported deaths are often listed for complications (organ failure, malnutrition, suicide, heart failure) resulting from rather than the actual eating disorder itself.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “An eating disorder is an illness that causes serious disturbances to your everyday diet, such as eating extremely small amounts of food or severely overeating.”

The three types of eating disorders include:

  • Anorexia nervosa: People with anorexia see themselves as overweight and are afraid to gain weight despite the fact that they are clearly underweight. Anorexia is more than just about food. It is a way to feel in control.  People will weigh themselves constantly, will weigh and measure and calculate the calories of the food they do ingest. For some, with anorexia, binge-eating may occur, they may become obsessed with excessive exercise, self-induced vomiting, use diuretics, laxatives or enemas. Some with anorexia say that this control with food and weight is a way to gain more control in their lives and to ease the stress and anxieties they experience. The medical consequences of anorexia vary including in seriousness but it affects the heart, other organs, the bones, and a myriad other physical conditions.
  • Bulimia nervosa: People with bulimia have recurring episodes of overeating very large amounts of food followed by one or more of these methods to compensate for the over-eating: self-induced vomiting, use of laxatives, excessive exercise, fasting. Unlike those with anorexia, those suffering bulimia often have a normal healthy weight. They are often very unhappy with their bodies and fear gaining weight. They tend to binge and purge secretively (because they are disgusted with themselves and are ashamed) from several times a week to several times a day. A host of medical problems caused by bulimia include hair loss, dental problems, gastrointestinal conditions, and problems affecting the heart.
  • Binge Eating Disorder: Those with binge eating disorder eat huge amounts of food during which they feel they have no control.  Unlike those with anorexia or bulimia, people with binge eating disorder do not self-induce vomit, exercise excessively, eat only certain foods or small amounts. Therefore, those with binge eating disorder tend to be over-weight or even obese.  Often those with this disorder feel guilt and shame about their binge eating which leads them to continue the cycle. Many miss work, school or social events to binge eat. Those with binge eating disorders often report having more health problems, depression, stress, trouble sleeping, and suicidal thoughts than those without this disorder. It can increase the risk for heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and other medical complications.

(more…)

Join National Leaders in Clinical Data Forum

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

binaryheadtrimmed2If you would like to learn from three of the nation’s leaders about the use of EHR-based data  to improve patient safety, quality of care, and evidence-based practice, plan to attend the in-person or live broadcast of the Using Data to Improve Clinical Patient Outcomes Forum on March 7, 2016, from 8:30-2:30 (PST).

Join us on Twitter at #NNLMdataforum. Registration is required. More information at the website https://nnlm.gov/data-forum