A news summary for staff, faculty, students and friends of the college.

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CPH News Digest

January 1, 1970

 CPH in the News

Please note: Access to the full text of articles summarized below may require online subscriptions to the publications.

Iowa Summer Institute in Biostatistics introduces students to the field

The Iowa Summer Institute in Biostatistics introduces students from across the country to the growing field of biostatistics.
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Lehmler leads team to address climate, environment, and health

With $500,000 in funding from the OVPR Interdisciplinary Scholars awards program, an interdisciplinary team will start work on a new project at the intersection of climate, the environment, and health. Hans-Joachim Lehmler, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, leads the project.
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Pentella discusses ‘brain-eating amoeba’

Michael Pentella, CPH clinical professor of epidemiology and director of the State Hygienic Laboratory, discussed Naegleria fowleri, the “brain-eating amoeba” that recently closed a beach at a state park. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Zahnd addresses increasing death in rural America

Whitney Zahnd, assistant professor of health management and policy, writes that "across rural America, mortality disparities are particularly stark compared to their urban counterparts, which have been intensified by the pandemic." (Rural Monitor)
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Zamba, Lehmler highlighted among UI researchers

UI researchers secured funding for 2,400 projects in fiscal year 2022. Several projects were highlighted, including two led by CPH faculty members Gideon Zamba and Hans-Joachim Lehmler. (UI OVPR)
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An international partnership focuses on safer farming

Gift Udoh, a Mandela Washington Fellowship alumna and entrepreneur, and Diane Rohlman, professor of occupational and environmental health, are collaborating on a Reciprocal Exchange to reduce pesticide exposure in rural Nigeria.
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Charlton named Iowa Cancer Consortium board president

The Iowa Cancer Consortium is pleased to announce the election of Dr. Mary Charlton as the new president of the Board of Directors effective July 1, 2022.
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Iowa’s public health training center receives $3.1M funding renewal

The Midwestern Public Health Training Center (MPHTC) at the University of Iowa College of Public Health has received a four-year grant continuation of over $3.1 million.
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Mueller comments on what makes successful rural collaborations

A story about a community garden in Arizona highlights a successful rural collaboration. In rural places with fewer resources, “you’ve got to bring what resources you have together, and you need to know how to tap whatever the local assets are,” says Keith Mueller, director of the Rural Policy Research Institute. (Modern Farmer)
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Report finds alcohol-related deaths spiked in 2020

CPH associate professor Paul Gilbert recently commented on new data published by the Iowa Department of Public Health that showed a spike in alcohol-related deaths in 2020. (Multiple sources)
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Report shows significant increase in alcohol-involved deaths in Iowa

A new report shows alcohol-involved deaths increased by more than 73% in Iowa between 2008 and 2019. Paul Gilbert, associate professor of community and behavioral health, discussed the findings. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Research shows firework injuries are increasing in Iowa

Since consumer fireworks were legalized in Iowa in 2017, fireworks-related injuries have more than doubled and injuries have been more severe. (IPRC)
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Online tools for alcohol recovery could narrow treatment gap

Online resources for supporting recovery from Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) are promising but underused, a new study suggests. The CPH research team included Paul Gilbert, Elizabeth Saathoff, and Grant Brown. (Newswise)
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Leinenkugel honored for public health service

Kathy Leinenkugel, who retired from IDPH in January after 14 years of service, received both the Iowa Public Health Heroes Award from the UI College of Public Health and the I-CASH Hall of Fame Award this year. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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UI supports 8 projects in latest round of P3 funding

The UI has awarded eight interdisciplinary projects with $15 million in funding generated by the public-private partnership (P3). Michael O’Rorke, assistant professor of epidemiology, is a collaborator on a lung cancer therapy research project that was funded. (Iowa Now)
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Kaskie comments on older adults returning to workforce

To help deal with labor shortages, many employers are turning to retired workers. “They’re starting to see how some of these age-inclusive strategies are going to get them back on their feet [after the pandemic],” says CPH professor Brian Kaskie. (McKnight's Senior Living)
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Charlton discusses cancer in Iowa’s Black population

Mary Charlton, director of the Iowa Cancer Registry, recently discussed how cancer and health disparities affect Iowa's Black population. (Black Health Matters)
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Harland discusses intimate partner violence interventions

Kari Harland (04MPH, 10PhD), UI assistant professor of emergency medicine, has joined the leadership team of the UI Injury Prevention Research Center as the director of the research core. She recently discussed intimate partner violence in a Q&A. (IPRC)
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Kontowicz talks about ticks and tracking Lyme disease

Eric Kontowicz (20PhD) recently discussed how he and his research team track, map, and model Lyme disease through search engines and social media. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Iowa researchers use search data to track Lyme disease trends

CPH professor Christy Petersen explains how her research team used Google search data to predict when people might be at higher risk of contracting Lyme disease. (KCRG)
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Peter Thorne named University of Iowa Distinguished Chair

Peter Thorne, professor of occupational and environmental health in the College of Public Health, has been named a recipient of the 2022 University of Iowa Distinguished Chair. The award is one of the highest bestowed on Iowa faculty.
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Hamann comments on pedestrian injuries

A recent article focused on pedestrian deaths and injuries near schools. It cited Cara Hamann, a UI injury epidemiologist, whose research found that pedestrians of color are hospitalized at higher rates than white pedestrians. She also found that a larger share of hospitalized pedestrians of color are children. (StreetsBlogNYC)
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Iowa Public Health Heroes featured in hometown news

Charla Schafer, executive director of the Community Foundation of Muscatine, and Tai Burkhart, director of Buchanan County Public Health, were recently honored with the UI College of Public Health's 2022 Public Health Hero Awards. Their local media recently featured their award-winning work.
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Zahnd comments on rural access to health care services

Whitney Zahnd, assistant professor of health management and policy, recently commented on the challenges rural residents face when seeking health care, including preventive care. (ICE Magazine)
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Charlton receives Iowa Mid-Career Faculty Scholar Award

Mary Charlton, associate professor of epidemiology, is one of five University of Iowa faculty selected to receive the inaugural Iowa Mid-Career Faculty Scholar Awards. The award provides funding to assist top, mid-career tenured associate professors who have an established national or international reputation in their discipline and are exceptional teachers in and outside the classroom. (Iowa Now)
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Petersen discusses lessons learned from the COVID pandemic

Christine Petersen, director of the UI Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, recently appeared on "Ethical Perspectives on the News" as part of a panel discussing lessons learned fighting COVID-19 and how we will respond to the next pandemic.
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Al-Rousan comments on physical, psychological toll on refugees

Alumna Tala Al Rousan (15MPH), a researcher of refugee health, says “emotional stress, fear of the unknown, the physical journey and (current) health problems of those who are travelling” are elements of the trauma faced by people forced to flee their country. (Irish Times)
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BLN funds programs to improve Iowans’ well-being

The college's Business Leadership Network (BLN) has awarded grants to four organizations' projects in Iowa focusing on promoting health and community-oriented work. (Daily Iowan)
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Janssen writes about grain bin safety

Two grain entrapment incidents have occurred this spring in eastern Iowa. Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, reminds farm workers to take precautions when handling grain. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Study looks at how the pandemic disrupted adolescent HPV vaccinations

A study by University of Iowa researchers found that during the pandemic, clinics struggled to provide routine care, and as a result, many adolescents missed HPV vaccinations. (Washington Post)
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Mueller discusses health care policy

In a recent podcast, Keith Mueller shares his thoughts on what he would improve given the chance to hit the policy reset button, particularly in rural healthcare. (Rural Health Leadership Radio)
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Study shows childhood risk factors are linked with adult cardiovascular events

Five childhood risk factors that predict stroke and heart attacks in adulthood have been identified after being tracked for up to half a century in the world’s largest international prospective cardiovascular disease study. The study, co-authored by Trudy Burns, CPH professor emerita of epidemiology, involved data from the long-running Muscatine Study. (Multiple sources)
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BLN Community Grants for 2022 announced

The College of Public Health and its Business Leadership Network (BLN) recently announced that four Iowa community organizations will be recipients of grant funding in 2022 through the BLN’s Community Grant Program.
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Experts projected BA.2 Omicron COVID variant would become dominant strain

In a March 18 story, experts correctly projected that the Omicron BA.2 sub-type would become the dominant COVID variant in the U.S. within weeks. "We can't completely let our guard down and must keep sequencing and monitoring the virus, but I do not think it warrants concern," said CPH professor Christine Petersen. (Newsweek)
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University of Iowa College of Public Health ranked No. 19 in the nation

The University of Iowa College of Public Health is the No. 19 school of public health in the nation, according to the 2023 Best Graduate School rankings from U.S. News & World Report. Among publicly supported schools, the college ranks No. 10.
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Expanding public coverage of dental care reduces disparities

A research team led by George Wehby, professor of health management and policy, found that expanding public coverage of dental care was linked to narrowed racial and ethnic disparities in use of dental services. (NIH)
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Iowa study examines TikTok videos that promote e-cigarette culture

A new student-led study from the University of Iowa College of Public Health examines the role that user-generated content on the social media platform TikTok plays in promoting Puff Bar culture. Puff Bar is a brand of disposable e-cigarette.
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Iowa researchers team up to address impacts of climate change on health

A team of University of Iowa researchers will pool their talents to tackle climate change and related health concerns through a new initiative that uses a “collaboratory” approach. The project is led by Peter Thorne, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health.
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Iowans urged to catch up on postponed cancer screenings

Many U.S. adults have delayed or avoided medical care — including cancer screening tests — due to the pandemic. The 2022 Cancer in Iowa report issued by the Health Registry of Iowa highlights the importance of cancer screenings to detect the disease early, when treatment is likely to be more successful. (Multiple sources)
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Online tracking: Iowa investigators use search history data to predict Lyme disease rates

A team of University of Iowa epidemiologists has developed new disease surveillance strategies that couple historical data with information drawn from internet search terms to predict current trends in Lyme disease.
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‘Cancer in Iowa’ report urges return to screening after COVID-19 put it on pause

Forty-one percent of U.S. adults delayed or avoided medical care — including cancer screening tests — in 2020. While the extent of the impact of this decrease in screenings is unknown, it’s possible it may have led to delayed diagnoses and increases in avoidable cancer deaths.
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Rohlman named UI College of Public Health associate dean for research

Diane Rohlman has been named associate dean for research in the University of Iowa College of Public Health. She began this role March 1, 2022.
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Study looks at commuting and winter weather-related crashes

CPH researchers Jonathan Davis and Diane Rohlman conducted a study looking at the role winter weather plays in crashes during commuting hours. Policies allowing for flexible travel times or working remotely could reduce weather-related crashes. (Multiple sources)
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Part-time farmers face extra stress

Both full-time and part-time farmers face daily hazards. One additional hazard part-time farmers constantly deal with is the stress of managing two jobs and a lack of time for farming activities, says Brandi Janssen, CPH clinical associate professor. (Yankton Daily)
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Petersen comments on vaccination against COVID-19

Public health officials continue to recommend getting vaccinated against COVID-19. The best way to decrease the chance of severe infection and the rate of infection is through vaccination, said Christine Petersen, CPH professor of epidemiology. (Daily Iowan)
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Project studies masculine norms to reduce violence

A U.S.-Indian collaboration funded by Fogarty is developing male-focused strategies to reduce intimate partner violence in Bangalore’s peri-urban neighborhoods. Will Story, CPH associate professor, is co-PI of the project. (Fogarty International Center)
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Iowa’s Black population faces barriers to cancer prevention

CPH faculty members Whitney Zahnd, Paul Gilbert, and Rima Afifi discussed the barriers that contribute to Black Iowan's high cancer incidence rates. (Daily Iowan)
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Torner honored with Faculty Excellence Award

Jim Torner, professor of epidemiology, was recognized by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, for his exceptional contributions and sustained record of excellence. (Iowa Now)
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State Hygienic Lab responds to increased demand for COVID testing

Mike Pentella, clinical professor of epidemiology, directs the State Hygienic Laboratory (SHL) at the University of Iowa. The SHL has completed analysis of more than 1.7 million COVID-19 tests since the pandemic began in early 2020. (OVPR)
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Study finds more than higher pay needed for nurse retention

A new study finds a significant relationship between hourly wages and turnover for certified nursing assistants--but not for licensed practical nurses and registered nurses--at Iowa nursing homes. Focusing on higher wages alone may not lead to lower turnover, write study authors Hari Sharma and Lili Xu. (McKnights)
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UI experts offer guidance on best masks for protecting against COVID-19

University of Iowa health experts say N95 or KN95 masks offer better protection against COVID-19 than surgical masks. (Daily Iowan)
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Field contributes to Radon Awareness Week webinar

Bill Field, CPH professor emeritus, contributed to a webinar on radon to kick off CDC's 2022 Radon Awareness Week, observed on Jan. 24-28.
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Charlton discusses the quality of cancer care in rural areas

Mary Charlton, associate professor of epidemiology, answered questions about improving the quality of cancer care in rural areas and an NCI grant for which she serves as principal investigator. (The ASCO Post)
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Wehby discusses mask mandates, health services research

CPH professor George Wehby was a recent guest on a podcast where he discussed his research on state-level mask mandates, children's educational attainment, racial and ethnic disparities in dental service use, and how he frames research questions. (Health Affairs)
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Petersen comments on exposure to monkeys after truck crash

A truck hauling 100 live monkeys crashed in Pennsylvania recently, potentially exposing first responders to monkey-borne illnesses. Christine Petersen, director of the UI Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, said serious diseases like monkey pox and Ebola are rare in cynomolgus macaques, but that "precaution should be taken." (New York Times)
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Petersen comments on study looking at prior infection, vaccination

A new study that compares coronavirus protection from prior infection and vaccination concludes getting the shots is still the safest way to prevent COVID-19. (AP)
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UI study examines role of toilet flushing in virus exposures and disease transmission

New University of Iowa research demonstrates that toilet flushing generates aerosols that could contribute to the spread of highly contagious viruses, such as norovirus and other viral pathogens including SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
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Center addresses trauma and resiliency for Native American communities

The National American Indian and Alaska Native Trauma and Service Adaptation Center based in the UI College of Public Health aims to help treat, reduce, and prevent trauma and increase wellness among Native children and their families. (Daily Iowan)
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Health insurance expansion linked to improved academic test scores of low-income children

A new University of Iowa study suggests that increasing access to health insurance coverage helps boost test scores among children from low-income households.
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Study finds possible link between cough medication use and certain birth defects

A new study from the University of Iowa College of Public Health suggests a possible link between selected birth defects and the use of certain types of over-the-counter cough medications by mothers early in pregnancy.
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Alumna named deputy director of Black Hawk County Health Department

Kaitlin Emrich (09MPH) was recently named deputy director of the Black Hawk County Health Department. She previously worked for Linn County’s health department. (The Courier)
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UI College of Public Health receives $2.1M to strengthen public health workforce development in Iowa

The University of Iowa College of Public Health has received $2.1 million through a contract with the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) to deliver a public health workforce development package for the state. The project is funded through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
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University of Iowa recognized for inclusive athletic programs

The University of Iowa was nationally recognized as a Special Olympics Unified Champion School for its efforts to include students with disabilities in intramural programs. CPH students Jenah McCarty and Sydney Prochaska are involved with the UI’s Special Olympics student organization. (Daily Iowan)
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Mueller, Ullrich discuss COVID-related deaths in rural areas

Keith Mueller and Fred Ullrich discussed research from the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis regarding COVID-19's impact on rural people and places. (Washington Journal/C-SPAN)
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Ward co-chairs NQF committee report outlining framework to guide telehealth delivery

A new report from National Quality Forum’s (NQF) Rural Telehealth and Healthcare System Readiness Committee outlines a framework to assess the impact that telehealth has on health care system readiness and health outcomes during emergencies and other public health events, specifically for rural areas. The committee is co-chaired by Marcia Ward, professor and director of the Rural Telehealth Research Center at the University of Iowa College of Public Health.
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People with STIs are more likely to give birth prematurely, study finds

Having a sexually transmitted infection (STI) before or during pregnancy has been associated with a higher risk of giving birth too early, according to a new study co-authored by Kelli Ryckman and other College of Public Health researchers. (CNN)
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Petersen comments on new state vaccine waiver law

Workers across the country are facing a Jan. 4 deadline to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or, in some cases, get tested weekly. But a new Iowa law expands workers' ability to refuse the vaccine, which could hurt efforts to end the pandemic. "If we don't have people actually get vaccinated, we're going to continue to have these pockets of people who aren't protected," said Christy Petersen, CPH professor of epidemiology. (IPR)
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Petersen urges vaccination against COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, the best way to decrease the chance of severe infection and the rate of infection is through vaccination, says Christine Petersen, director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases in the UI College of Public Health. (Daily Iowan)
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CPH alumna Emily Houston named Washington County public health director

The Washington County (Iowa) Board of Health recently announced its next public health director, CPH graduate Emily Houston (20BA, 21MPH). She starts the position on Nov. 29. (Southeast Iowa Union)
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COVID-19 slows progress toward ending cancer disparities

The COVID-19 pandemic has delayed cancer research and care, including screenings. If people wait until they have symptoms to get screened, the cancer may have progressed to a point where it’s harder to treat, said Mary Charlton, CPH associate professor of epidemiology. (Daily Iowan)
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CPH research shows higher rates of COVID-19 cases, deaths in rural counties

Research from Fred Ullrich and Keith Mueller shows disparities throughout the summer between rates of COVID-19 cases and deaths in metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas. (Daily Iowan)
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Story receives Fogarty funding to study intimate partner violence in India

CPH associate professor Will Story and his colleagues have received a supplemental grant from Fogarty to study how the pandemic has impacted intimate partner violence in India. (Fogarty)
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Survey highlights pandemic’s impact in Iowa’s small towns

A new survey reveals the impact of COVID-19 on the health, economic, and emotional welfare of residents from small towns in Iowa. Nicole Novak, CPH research assistant professor, contributed to the report.
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HWC receives $6 million to improve worker health

The Healthier Workforce Center of the Midwest (HWC) has been awarded renewed funding to improve workplace health and well-being throughout the region over the next five years. (Daily Iowan)
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National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week is Oct. 24-30, 2021

To help increase blood lead testing rates for children under 3 years in age, IDPH has revised its Childhood Lead Poisoning Risk Questionnaire and Blood Lead Testing Guidelines to be shorter and easier to use and understand. The updates were made by IDPH in partnership with the Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy.
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Petersen discusses crowds, COVID, and more

Christine Petersen, the director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the UI College of Public Health, recently discussed COVID-19, vaccines, crowds, and cold weather. (CBS News)
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Iowa Climate Statement addresses electric infrastructure

"The Iowa Climate Statement 2021: Strengthening Iowa's Electric Infrastructure" released last week advocates for new investments in our electric systems to make them more reliable and resilient to extreme weather events. Peter Thorne, professor and head of occupational and environmental health, and David Osterberg, CPH professor emeritus, contributed to the statement. (Iowa Environmental Focus)
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Iowa researchers awarded $1.1M CDC grant to develop training for remote managers

A team of researchers from the Tippie College of Business and the College of Public Health have received a $1.1 million grant from the CDC to investigate better methods of training supervisors to manage remote workers, focusing on both productivity and worker well-being.
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Petersen: The COVID spike that didn’t happen

Christine Petersen, professor of epidemiology, commented on why an expected surge in COVID-19 cases, driven by large gatherings at college football games, seems not to have happened.
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Mueller comments on Delta variant and rural COVID

Prof. Keith Mueller commented to Wisconsin Public Radio on how COVID death rates in rural areas are now double those of urban areas.
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Gilbert co-authors post on the alcohol and breast cancer connection

Paul Gilbert, CPH associate professor, recently co-authored a blog post about the link between alcohol and cancer. For women, alcohol use is one of the top causes of breast cancer, and just over one in six breast cancer deaths is due to alcohol. (Iowa Cancer Consortium)
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Peek-Asa discusses bullying, masks

As a part of National Bullying Prevention Month, researchers say they are noticing something new on intimidation in schools. "Anytime there is stress, new behaviors, unanticipated situations that are stressful, it really does set up an avenue for bullying," said Corinne Peek-Asa, CPH associate dean of research. She says an example of those "unanticipated behaviors" is the pandemic and the safety measures that have come with it, like mask wearing. (KCRG)
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COVID is killing rural Americans at twice the rate of urbanites

While the initial surge of COVID-19 deaths skipped over much of rural America, where roughly 15% of Americans live, nonmetropolitan mortality rates quickly started to outpace those of metropolitan areas as the virus spread nationwide before vaccinations became available, according to data from the Rural Policy Research Institute. (Multiple sources)
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CPH researchers find pedestrian death rates are higher for most minorities

Cara Hamann, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, said fatal pedestrian crashes in the U.S. rose by more than 50% from 2008 to 2018. "We see pedestrian fatalities rising overall, but those increases are not equal when we look by racial group," Hamann adds. (ABC15 Arizona)
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Petersen comments on COVID testing in Iowa

The recent COVID-19 surge prompted Iowans in September to seek coronavirus tests at a rate not seen since Christmas of last year. The state also reported a 9.5% positivity rate for tests Wednesday, which shows that there's not enough testing occurring in the state, said Christine Petersen, director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the UI College of Public Health. (Des Moines Register)
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FarmSafe podcast works to reduce injuries, fatalities for farmers

The Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health is working to help farm workers in Iowa stay safe through a podcast. FarmSafe aims to share first-hand stories from farmers and real-life tips from experts to make safer decisions on the farm. (KGAN)
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Rural Americans dying of COVID at more than twice the rate of urban counterparts

COVID incidence rates in September 2021 were roughly 54 percent higher in rural areas than elsewhere, said Fred Ullrich, a research analyst with the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis. (NBC News)
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Mueller discusses challenges of health care in rural areas

Keith Mueller, director of the Rural Policy Research Institute and its Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis, spoke about the challenges of rural health care. (SDPB Radio)
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Zahnd discusses rural cancer care

Whitney Zahnd, assistant professor of health management and policy, recently discussed approaches to addressing rural cancer disparities. (Rural Health Leadership Radio)
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New podcast shares stories, tips for farm safety and health

The new FarmSafe podcast produced by the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health combines near-miss stories from farmers, agricultural workers and emergency responders with tips for better health and safety on the farm. (The Gazette)
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Public health workforce is facing burnout

Burnout from the pandemic has left many public health professionals questioning their ability to continue their work. At the same time, enrollment at schools of public health, including Iowa, is growing. (The Gazette)
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Study looks at drought, stress, and mental health interventions for farmers

A new study shows that increased stress related to drought conditions occurs during the growing season and indicates the need for mental health interventions. The study was funded by a pilot grant from the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health.
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Askelson comments on decision-making and vaccine hesitancy

CPH associate professor Natoshia Askelson comments on how mixed messages have affected decisions about the COVID-19 vaccine. (Daily Iowan)
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Field discusses role of health care providers in reducing radon risks

Radon gas is the leading environmental cause of cancer mortality in the United States. CPH professor Bill Field discusses the role health care providers can play in reducing risks through patient education and the promotion of improved public policy. (Rounding@Iowa)
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Hamann offers back-to-school safety tips

Back-to-school safety is different this year, with many children returning to school after a year of learning at home. Cara Hamann, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, offers safety tips for kids who ride their bikes to school. (U.S. News and World Report)
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Doctor shares his experience caring for rural patients during COVID-19

Ryan Flannery, a physician in Washington, Iowa, shares his perspective and experience as a rural physician caring for families during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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FarmSafe podcast uses stories to promote agricultural health and safety

FarmSafe, a new podcast created by the UI College of Public Health's Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health, is helping prevent farm-related injuries and deaths through storytelling and education. (Daily Iowan)
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Study examines US rural cancer control plans to address disparities

A new study from researchers at the UI College of Public Health and the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina found that only about one-third of U.S. states, territories, and tribal organizations have made plans to address rural cancer mortality disparities through their required comprehensive cancer control plans.
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Gerr: Bans on mask mandates result in preventable COVID-19 cases

Bans on universal requirements for face coverings could be detrimental to overall compliance with mask wearing, said Fred Gerr, professor emeritus of occupational and environmental health. Not only does it send a message that diminishes the benefit of masks to the community, but also can lead to an actual reduction in mask use. "I think that results in an occurrence of COVID-19 cases that were preventable and should have been prevented," Gerr said. (The Gazette)
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Study on vaccine hesitancy among older adults cited

A recent study by CPH assistant professor Kanika Arora and doctoral student Divya Bhagianadh was cited in a story about unvaccinated older adults. Where seniors get their information plays a role in vaccine hesitancy, according to the study. (New York Times)
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Zahnd comments on nursing shortages in rural hospitals

Rural areas have long struggled to recruit and retain health professionals, but the recent COVID surge has worsened the problem. Whitney Zahnd, CPH assistant professor, voiced concern that rural hospitals may go unnoticed by government officials who are sending emergency assistance to larger hospitals with more patients. (Pew Charitable Trusts)
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PRC collaborates on new COVID-19 vaccine campaign

A University of Iowa-led program launched a mini campaign aiming to increase COVID-19 vaccination in mid-sized Iowa communities. The UI Prevention Research Center for Rural Health (PRC), the Iowa Public Health Association, and Iowa Immunizes are collaborators for the “delta” campaign, which began on Aug. 23.(Daily Iowan)
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Ward comments on growth of school-based telehealth centers

Health systems are expanding telehealth services in schools, especially in areas where transportation and clinician shortages are barriers to care. Due to COVID-19 resetting the baseline for telehealth utilization, more virtual services exist now, says Marcia Ward, CPH professor and director of the Rural Telehealth Research Center. (Modern Healthcare)
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OSHA raises awareness to prevent construction worker suicides

OSHA has formed a task force of industry partners, unions, and educators to raise awareness of construction workers' risk factors for suicide. The Healthier Workforce Center of the Midwest created a workplace suicide prevention campaign for construction workers that has expanded beyond a regional initiative. (EHS Today)
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Gilbert comments on UI’s lack of a mask requirement

Iowa is the only Big Ten university that doesn’t require masks, per a directive from the state Board of Regents. "I see this almost as an ethical issue, that we’ve had constraints imposed externally that prevent us from really following the science-based guidelines to keep us safe," says Paul Gilbert, CPH associate professor. (Daily Iowan)
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Petersen answers questions about the delta variant

Christine Petersen, CPH professor and director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, recently answered questions about the delta variant, masks, and vaccination. (Daily Iowan)
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Q&A with Dr. Fred Gerr: A matter of masks

As students and faculty return to in-person teaching and learning after more than a year of pandemic disruptions, Fred Gerr, CPH professor emeritus, answers questions about the effectiveness of masks in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
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Petersen comments on rise of Delta variant in Johnson County

Prof. Christine Petersen, director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the College of Public Health, comments on vaccination rates in Johnson County, and concerns about the Delta variant as students return to campus later this month. (The Daily Iowan)
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Column by CPH alumnus recalls CRANDIC rail line and CPHB rail platform

A column by CPH alumnus Austin Wu gets assistance from his readers to unearth the remnants of the old CRANDIC rail line between Cedar Rapids and Iowa City. The article mentions that the pedestrian bridge over Highway 6 next to the current College of Public Health Building actually has a rail platform built into it so that it might someday serve as a stop on a revived CRANDIC rail passenger line. (Iowa City Press-Citizen)
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Field details dangers of radon in Iowa

Bill Field, professor of occupational and environmental health and internationally recognized expert on radon, explains why Iowa has the nation’s highest concentrations of this naturally-occurring carcinogenic gas.
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Askelson: One-on-one communication critical for COVID vaccine uptake

Natoshia Askelson, associate professor of community and behavioral health, commented to the Daily Iowan on the importance of health care providers advocating for COVID-19 vaccination with adolescents and their parents.
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CPH faculty, staff highlight rural cancer programs

Mary Charlton, Whitney Zahnd, Jennifer Patterson, and Kimberly Merchant co-authored an article describing an array of rural cancer control research projects and partnerships with rural communities supported by federal agencies such as the National Cancer Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Health Resources and Services Administration.
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Rural Iowans’ share their motivations to get COVID vaccine

Steph Leonard, an occupational safety manager at the University of Iowa, shares stories from rural Iowans on why they chose to get vaccinated against COVID-19. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Survey gauges COVID-19 vaccine interest among adolescents, parents

A team of researchers that includes faculty from the UI College of Public Health has found that adolescents and the parents of adolescents are split on their attitudes about adolescents getting the COVID-19 vaccine. (CCOM)
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Students worry about their families as COVID cases rise in Bangladesh

Redwan Bin Abdul Baten, a CPH graduate student, lives in Iowa City with his wife and children, but he worries for his family in his home country of Bangladesh. "The health care system in [Bangladesh] was not resilient enough, was not strong enough, to absorb this kind of a shock like a global pandemic," he says. (Daily Iowan)
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Fireworks-related injuries continue to rise in Iowa

A report compiled by researchers from University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics, the UI Injury Prevention Research Center, and other partners shows that fireworks-related injuries have increased since the Iowa Legislature legalized the sale of fireworks in May 2017. (Multiple sources)
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Immunocompromised people still face COVID challenges

Michaela Curran, a postdoctoral fellow in community and behavioral health, recently co-authored an opinion piece on COVID-19 vaccinations and immunocompromised people. (San Diego Union-Tribune)
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Evidence-based public health training improves skills

A recent evaluation by a team of researchers found that training in evidence-based public health practices improves practitioner skill levels. The team included Anjali Deshpande, CPH clinical associate professor of epidemiology. (Washington University)
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Fireworks-related injuries continue to rise in Iowa

A report compiled by researchers from University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics and the UI College of Public Health, along with emergency personnel from Iowa Methodist Medical Center and the UI Injury Prevention Research Center, shows significant increases in fireworks-related injuries – and in the severity of those injuries – since the Iowa Legislature legalized the sale of fireworks in May 2017. (UIHC)
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Public health partnership promotes COVID-19 vaccination

Spirit Lake is one of 17 Iowa communities where University of Iowa officials hope to promote COVID-19 vaccination as rates have slowed. The UI Prevention Research Center for Rural Health, the Iowa Public Health Association, and the Iowa Immunizes Coalition will partner with local public health leaders, community organizations and other local groups on the project. (Dickinson County News)
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Research team launches health equity projects

Ebonee Johnson, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, is part of a UI research team that received funding through the public-private partnership known as P3 to alleviate inequities in health care. Johnson said the team plans to spend the first year of the project focused on non-health care, frontline workers in Iowa affected by inaccessible health care. (Daily Iowan)
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Anthony reminds farmers of safety measures when working in confined spaces

An experienced scuba diver died in June at a farm in Iowa while repairing a million-gallon anaerobic digester where cattle manure and food waste generate biogas. T. Renee Anthony, professor of occupational and environmental health, said any time farmers make repairs in a confined space, such as a digester or a grain bin, they should take several precautions. (The Gazette)
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Mueller comments on gaps in vaccinations rates

Rural communities outside America's cities are falling further behind in the race to vaccinate against COVID-19. Pockets of lower vaccination rates are a problem for people everywhere, experts say. If COVID-19 flares up in any unvaccinated rural or suburban area, those outbreaks would likely ripple into nearby cities, according to Keith Mueller, director of the University of Iowa's Rural Policy Research Institute. (NPR)
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Iowa Department of Education, UI to launch new pre-K-12 school mental health center

The Iowa Department of Education and the University of Iowa have announced a partnership aimed at expanding support for mental health, including training, resources, and outreach, to educators and schools across the state. The new Iowa Center for School Mental Health will be housed in the UI College of Education, initially partnering with experts in UI colleges, including the College of Public Health. (Iowa Now)
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Peek-Asa comments on traffic death inequities

A new analysis of deaths on U.S. roads found that Black people were killed in traffic crashes at a rate almost 25 percent higher than white people in recent years, a disparity that appears to have worsened during the coronavirus pandemic. "Safety inequity in transportation is really an old issue," said CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa. "It's those historic factors that have led to the potential for increased inequities during COVID." (Washington Post)
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Last responders faced risks as COVID spread

A UI College of Public Health study is looking at the pandemic's toll on the mental health of coroners, funeral workers, and other deathcare workers. In the first phase of the study last summer, more than half of those surveyed said they experienced moderate to high levels of stress. (Frontline)
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Cancer centers nationwide urge getting HPV vaccines back on schedule

Cancer centers across the country are urging Americans to get human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccinations of adolescents back on schedule. "Vaccinations have just become a lower priority and that makes sense. But right now, we need to get kids back on track," said Natoshia Askelson, assistant professor of community and behavioral health. (KGAN)
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Study evaluates performance of 3D-printed face masks

A team of researchers that includes CPH professors Patrick O'Shaughnessy and Peter Thorne are experimenting with 3D-printed masks as a substitute for N95s and other respiratory devices. A new study evaluated how well the 3D masks perform, with a focus on the filter materials used to block out airborne particles and liquid contaminants. (VA Research Currents)
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Kaskie discusses age diversity in the workforce

Many organizations have been struggling to create a more diverse and welcoming work environment. "We're having a diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) moment in the workplace," says Brian Kaskie, CPH associate professor of health management and policy. "We want to bring age into that too." Kaskie leads an initiative called Colorado's Above-Fifty Employment Strategies. (Forbes)
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Askelson leads project to improve Iowa’s COVID-19 vaccination rates

UI researchers and public health groups have received a $500,000 CDC grant to find ways to improve the COVID-19 vaccination rates in 17 Iowa communities. The researchers, led by Natoshia Askelson, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, will work with community residents in creating strategies that overcome barriers and encourage residents to seek the vaccine. (The Gazette)
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Carnahan weighs in on activities for unvaccinated kids

In an informal survey, the New York Times asked experts, including Ryan Carnahan, CPH professor of epidemiology, what activities families with children who don't yet qualify for COVID vaccines can do. (New York Times)
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Robinson comments on challenges of pandemic and cardiovascular disease

Following the pandemic, experts predict a "tsunami" of cardiovascular disease due to weight gain, stress, lost disease management time, and long-haul COVID. However, one positive may be the attention the pandemic drew to the lifelong benefit of prevention and control of cardiovascular risk factors, suggests Jennifer Robinson, CPH professor and director of the Preventive Intervention Center. (MedPage Today)
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Watkins discusses inequities in green space access

Not all urban residents have the same access, geographically and historically, to nearby green space. "[I]n most studies there's a demonstrated pattern between income and urban forest cover; that is, higher income is associated with more urban forest cover," explains Shannon Lea Watkins, assistant professor of community and behavioral health. (Eos)
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UI to promote COVID-19 vaccine uptake in Iowa’s small and mid-sized communities

While nearly half of all Iowans have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, demand for the vaccine has slowed, particularly in less densely populated regions of the state. That’s a trend researchers in the University of Iowa College of Public Health are aiming to reverse through a new federal grant to promote vaccine uptake in small and mid-sized communities across Iowa. 
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Mueller says investment in public health will make a major difference

Keith Mueller, professor and head of health management and policy, says the Biden Administration's plans to invest in public health will make a "major difference." Mueller adds, "We've needed and will continue to need this kind of investment in public health nationally and, of course, in Iowa." (Radio Iowa)
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Pentella comments on at-home COVID-19 antigen tests

Several new at-home COVID-19 antigen tests, which received Emergency Use Authorization from the U.S. FDA in late March, are opening up a new level of testing availability. "The important point about these recently approved products is increasing access to testing," says Michael Pentella, professor of epidemiology and director of the State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa. (Diagnostics World)
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Field says cost of radon mitigation can be a barrier

While it's important to test for radon in homes, the cost of fixing the problem can be high. R. William Field, a professor of occupational and environmental health at the University of Iowa and an internationally recognized expert on radon, said the cost of radon mitigation is a barrier for people with lower socioeconomic status. (Toronto Star)
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Alumnus discusses bringing personalized medicine to the frontlines of care delivery

Alumnus Justin Brueck (10MHA), assistant vice president of NorthShore University HealthSystem, recently discussed the integration of genomics into the primary care setting. (Becker's Hospital Review)
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Mueller comments on rural-urban divide in vaccination rates

An NPR analysis of county-level vaccination data from the CDC shows signs of an emerging rural-urban divide, especially among people who are 65 years old or older. Keith Mueller, director of the UI Rural Policy Research Institute, has been encouraging decision-makers to look beyond hospitals and chain pharmacies to get vaccines delivered to more rural communities. (NPR)
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More Iowans turn to alcohol due to impacts from pandemic

When the pandemic began in March of 2020, researchers predicted that the nation would see a steady increase in alcohol consumption. More than a year later, that has been proven true, especially here in Iowa. According to Paul Gilbert, assistant professor at the UI College of Public Health, life changing events similar to the COVID-19 pandemic can lead to an increase in alcohol consumption. (KGAN)
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Mueller comments on Johnson & Johnson vaccine pause

U.S. health authorities paused the use of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines over reports of rare but severe blood clots. The pause "slows down some of the momentum that was building to use Johnson & Johnson to get to those [rural] populations," said CPH professor Keith Mueller. (Wall Street Journal)
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Food workers are still experiencing waves of COVID-19

More than 50 U.S. food and meatpacking plants have had repeated outbreaks of COVID-19 in the past year, yet most workplace locations remain undisclosed. In some cases, it's impossible to know how the virus is spreading in a plant because of a lack of transparency from the industry, says Fredric Gerr, CPH professor emeritus. (FERN)
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Iowa sees increase in alcohol consumption during pandemic

The state of Iowa has seen an uptick in alcohol consumption following the pandemic. Paul Gilbert, CPH assistant professor, said even before the pandemic, Iowa was considered a heavy drinking state in a heavy drinking region. (Daily Iowan)
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Ullrich comments on redefinition of ‘metropolitan’ region

A proposed change to what constitutes a metropolitan area of the U.S. is getting pushback, with some arguing that the resulting increase in what are considered "rural" counties would make it harder for them to compete for scarce federal dollars. Fred Ullrich with the Department of Health Management and Policy discussed the new definitions. (Agri Pulse)
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Thorne warns Iowa will see increased flooding, drought, and more

Climate change will increase damage from flooding, drought, toxic algae, and air pollution in the Midwest, says Peter Thorne, professor and head of Occupational and Environmental Health. Thorne spoke at this year's virtual Iowa Water Conference. (Successful Farming)
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Partnership studies HIV stigma in western Kenya

Will Story, assistant professor in the UI College of Public Health, and Nema Aluku, research associate at Tangaza University College in Nairobi, Kenya, were recently awarded a National Institutes of Health grant to study HIV stigma among adolescents in western Kenya. (IP)
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Women in male-dominated fields detail their journeys to success

The Daily Iowan interviewed women in public health, engineering, medical professions, and in religious leadership to detail the challenges and successes they’ve had throughout their careers as women paving the way for more women to enter the fields. Linda Snetselaar, CPH professor and chair of preventive nutrition education, was one of the women profiled.
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University of Iowa College of Public Health earns top 20 national ranking

The University of Iowa College of Public Health is the #20 school of public health in the nation, according to the latest rankings from U.S. News & World Report. Among publicly supported schools, the college ranks #10. 
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Study finds pregnant Venezuelan refugees have worse birth outcomes than Colombian women

A new study from researchers at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and the National University of Colombia suggests that pregnant Venezuelan refugees in Colombia face significant health care barriers that result in worse birth outcomes when compared to native Colombians.
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Gilbert comments on rising alcohol use during pandemic

The Iowa Alliance of Coalitions for Change held a news conference Tuesday to discuss increased sales and consumption of liquor during the COVID-19 pandemic. Paul Gilbert, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, said Iowa is a heavy drinking state, well above the national average for binge drinking. (Muscatine Journal)
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Rohlman discusses farm hazards and youth

While there are many benefits to growing up on a farm, there are also many hazards. Diane Rohlman with the University of Iowa College of Public Health said all-terrain vehicles and utility-terrain vehicles are at the top of the list of hazards for children on farms. (DTN/The Progressive Farmer)
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CPH researchers’ study on mask mandates ranks among most shared of all time

Last June, University of Iowa researchers George Wehby and Wei Lyu were some of the first researchers to publish a study analyzing the effectiveness of mask mandates. Now, their study is one of the most shared studies of all time. (Daily Iowan)
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Researchers studying effects of COVID-19 in Latino communities

UI students Crystal Garcia, a PhD student in epidemiology, and Miriam Velez-Bermudez, a PhD student in health psychology, are studying the long-term effects of COVID-19 on Latinos in Iowa. They have sent surveys to Latino households throughout the state. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Report shows racial disparities in Iowa’s health care system

A recent report released by the Iowa Cancer Registry highlighted racial disparities in Iowa's health care system. Mary Charlton, director of the registry, said while the report provides valuable insight, there are still many unanswered questions in addressing why racial disparities in cancer patients exist. (Daily Iowan)
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Masks and vaccines are effective at combating COVID-19 spread

An article about the effectiveness of masks and vaccines at combating the spread of COVID-19 cited a study by CPH researchers Wei Lyu and George Wehby. The study analyzed how mask mandates in 15 states and the District of Columbia affected COVID-19 growth rates. (USA Today)
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Kaskie discusses medical marijuana study

Brian Kaskie, associate professor of health management and policy, is working with the IDPH to develop an observational study on the effectiveness of medical marijuana in treating debilitating conditions. (The Gazette)
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Report shows Black Iowans are disproportionately impacted by cancer

Concerns over racial and ethnic disparities in cancer are the focus of the 2021 Cancer in Iowa report, issued by the Iowa Cancer Registry earlier this month. On this episode of River to River, host Ben Kieffer talks with experts about these newly reported findings, and advocates discuss efforts to support women of color experiencing breast cancer. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Rohlman discusses keeping kids safe on the farm

Diane Rohlman, professor of occupational and environmental heath, spoke about preventing youth injuries and deaths in agricultural settings during a recent webinar in the University of Minnesota and North Dakota State University Extension Farm & Ranch Safety Webinar Series. (Farm Progress)
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CPH students among ranks of college students working as contact tracers

Taya Westfield, a senior public health student at the University of Iowa, is one of many students across the nation joining the fight against COVID-19 and taking the leap as newfound contact tracers with the help of university-run programs and their local public health departments. (CNBC)
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Media roundup: Cancer in Iowa report

Catch up on the news stories generated by the release of the 2021 Cancer in Iowa report, which highlighted racial disparities.
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Field urges update of OSHA radon standards

The March edition of The Radon Reporter features an article written by Bill Field, professor of occupational and environmental health. Titled “The OSHA Radon Standard,“ the article discusses the ionizing radiation standard for radon, which has remained unchanged since 1971.
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Redefining metro counties could have complicated outcomes for rural America

A proposal to change how the federal government classifies metropolitan and nonmetropolitan counties could have big implications for rural America. Fred Ullrich and Keith Mueller with the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis weighed in on some of the possible positive and negative consequences on counties. (Daily Yonder)
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Mueller comments on lack of pharmacies in rural counties

More than 400 rural counties with a combined population of nearly 2.5 million people lack a retail pharmacy that's included in a federal partnership to distribute COVID-19 vaccines. Independent pharmacies that have traditionally served rural areas have been disappearing as well, adds Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis. (AP)
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State Health Registry of Iowa issues Cancer in Iowa 2021 report, highlights racial disparities

African Americans in Iowa are getting cancer and dying from it at higher rates than any other group in the state. According to the 2021 Cancer in Iowa report issued by the State Health Registry of Iowa, the age-adjusted cancer mortality rate for Black people in Iowa is more than 25% greater than it is for white people.
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Native American Leadership Academy adapts to virtual programs

Since the pandemic began, the University of Iowa College of Public Health's Native American Leadership Academy has continued to offer support to Native American behavioral health specialists through safe, virtual spaces. The academy helps tribal leaders across the U.S. develop programs to address addiction and mental health within their communities. (Daily Iowan)
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Wehby’s face mask study tops online engagement

A College of Public Health study examining how community policies mandating face masks mitigate the spread of COVID-19 ranks among the most shared and mentioned research articles ever tracked by the data science company Altmetric. The study was authored by George Wehby, professor of health management and policy, and research associate Wei Lyu.
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‘Pharmacy deserts’ challenged to find ways to distribute COVID-19 vaccines

A recent analysis by the Rural Policy Research Institute found that 111 rural counties have no pharmacy that can distribute COVID-19 vaccines. That means many local health departments will need to figure out who in their area has the capacity to administer vaccines, says Keith Mueller, director of the Rural Policy Research Institute's Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis. (CNN)
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BLN helps Davenport barbershop establish health station for clients

A Davenport barbershop recently created a permanent health station to provide access to health information, resources, and education. The health station is part of the Medicine in the Barbershop partnership between UnityPoint Health – Trinity and 4 Sher Cut & Style, and is partially funded through a grant from the UI College of Public Health's Business Leadership Network (BLN) Community Grant program. (Multiple sources)
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Fading memories make childhood trauma research a challenge in adults

A University of Iowa study finds that the limitations of human memory make it difficult for researchers to link adverse childhood experiences to physical health issues later in life. The study was part of a project supported by the UI Injury Prevention Research Center in the College of Public Health and funded by the CDC. (Iowa Now)
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Study links plant protein intake to lower risk of deaths from cardiovascular disease, dementia

Postmenopausal women who ate high levels of plant protein had lower risks of premature death, cardiovascular disease death, and dementia-related death compared with women who ate less plant protein, according to new research from University of Iowa College of Public Health investigators.
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Climate change could affect future infectious diseases

UI environmental health experts say climate change could advance the spread of future infectious diseases and frequency of global health disasters. CPH professor Peter Thorne said the typical time span between pandemics is 100 years, but the next pandemic could be sooner. (Daily Iowan)
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UI colleges of business and public health partner with Native American tribes to develop programming

A faculty member from the Tippie College of Business is working with a program in the College of Public Health that partners with Native American tribes to develop new programs addressing mental health and addiction needs in local communities. (Tippie)
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Petersen discusses vaccines, epidemiology, and the pandemic

Christine Petersen, professor of epidemiology, recently discussed how the experience of vaccine development will shape vaccine science beyond the pandemic, and how the pandemic is influencing scientific study of infectious diseases. (MPR News)
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UI considers three models to change approach to campus safety

The Reimagining Campus Safety Action Committee held meetings in February to gather feedback on three potential plans. MPH student Felicia Pieper says she favors what is being called the holistic model. (Daily Iowan)
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UI recommends double-masking to prevent spread of COVID-19 variants

Public health experts say wearing two masks could be more effective in slowing the spread of new COVID-19 variants. CPH professor Renee Anthony says that the main problem with wearing one mask is that it usually doesn't create an effective enough seal around the face. (Daily Iowan)
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Mueller comments on Iowa’s vaccination struggles

Keith Mueller, director of the Rural Policy Research Institute, said the national plan of distributing COVID-19 vaccine to 21 pharmacy chains has shortcomings because many counties have no pharmacies available to deliver vaccine. (The Gazette)
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Parker weighs in on when young adults should receive vaccines

The President of Cornell College in Mount Vernon suggests that young people aged 18-29, including college students, should get the single-shot Johnson and Johnson vaccine as soon as possible. Edith Parker, dean of the UI College of Public Health, says the priority groups should get all available shots first. (KCRG)
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Gerr expects increase in state’s COVID-19 infections

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds recently lifted COVID-19 restrictions statewide, including social distancing and face coverings. Fredric Gerr, CPH professor emeritus, said he predicts the state will see an influx of COVID-19 infections without preventative measures in place. (Daily Iowan)
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CPH studies examine health challenges for farmers

New studies from the College of Public Health highlight the health challenges of farming communities, including rates of dementia and the effects of COVID-19. (Daily Iowan)
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Petersen comments on Iowans’ COVID behavior

Contrary to experts' predictions, Iowa didn't see a huge post-holiday spike in COVID-19 cases. One reason could be that Iowans changed their behavior in the nick of time. "It means people listened to the prevention messages!” says Christine Petersen, director of the UI Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases. (The Atlantic)
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COVID Q&A: Is it time to begin double-masking?

As COVID-19 vaccination efforts continue across the nation, emerging variants of the coronavirus present new public health challenges. Renee Anthony, professor of occupational and environmental health in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, offers updated advice to protect against transmission of the virus, including the practice of double-masking as well as other masking tips and reminders.
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UI to start testing wastewater for COVID-19

The University of Iowa has announced it will begin testing wastewater to help monitor the presence of COVID-19 on campus. The pilot program is a partnership between UI Facilities Management and Engie North America, Student Health, University Housing and Dining, the College of Public Health, and the State Hygienic Lab. (KCRG)
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Parker comments on importance of wearing masks after COVID vaccination

As the vaccine rollout continues, there's still not enough data to know definitely if vaccines halt transmission of COVID-19. "Thus, wearing masks is crucial, even if vaccinated, so you will not transmit the disease," says Edith Parker, dean of the UI College of Public Health. (Iowa State Daily)
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Preparing the next generation of Native community leaders

The Native American Leadership Academy helps tribal leaders develop programs to address mental health and addiction issues in their communities, The academy is based in the College of Public Health's Native Center for Behavioral Health. (UI)
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Study shows agriculture workers more likely to have dementia

A study led by Kanika Arora, assistant professor of health management and policy, finds people who work long-term in the agricultural industry have 46% greater odds of developing dementia than those in other fields. (Multiple sources)
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Lack of transportation poses a barrier to vaccination

In rural areas, some residents are facing serious transportation challenges getting to COVID-19 vaccine sites. Local pharmacies will be key to distributing vaccines, said Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis at the University of Iowa. (PEW)
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Muscatine Heart Study marks 50 years

The University of Iowa's Muscatine Heart Study has shown us that what we do as children has an impact on our cardiovascular health as adults. Five decades on, the study is still going strong. Trudy Burns, professor emerita in epidemiology, joined the project in 1982 and took over as lead investigator in 2005. (UI)
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Thorne discusses restoring environmental protections

On a recent edition of River to River, Peter Thorne, professor of occupational and environmental health, discussed stances the Biden administration is taking when it comes to environmental policy. Thorne chaired the Environmental Protection Agency's Science Advisory Board from 2015 to 2017. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Gilbert discusses the benefits of taking a break from drinking

On a recent episode of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe was joined by Paul Gilbert, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, for a look at "dry January" and the possible benefits of taking even a short hiatus from drinking. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Study examines mental health needs of last responders

Cedar Rapids funeral director Peter Teahen says the surging COVID-19 deaths are taking a toll on last responders. Teahen is working with the University of Iowa College of Public Health on a new study looking at the mental health needs of last responders. (KCRG)
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Mueller comments on rural vaccine distribution challenges

Pharmacies are a key part of the national COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan, but many areas of the country lack access to a pharmacy. "We need to be alert to the fact that it's not as simple as thinking you've got a contract with 19 franchises and that's going to cover the nation because Walgreens and CVS are everywhere — well, no they're not," said Keith Mueller, director of the Rural Policy Research Institute. (Undark)
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Study shows working in agriculture poses higher risk of developing dementia

University of Iowa researchers analyzed data from the Health and Retirement Study (1998-2014) and found that people who identified as having long-term occupations in the agriculture, fishing, and forestry sectors had 46% greater odds of having dementia than those who did not. (GPCAH)
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Lyu, Wehby papers make Top 20 most-read articles list

Congratulations to Wei Lyu and George Wehby, whose paper on the community use of face masks was the most-read article in "Health Affairs" last year! The duo also had a second article on shelter-in-place orders that made the Top 20. (Health Affairs)
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Many rural counties lack pharmacies to help distribute vaccines

When COVID-19 vaccines become more widely available, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will partner with retail pharmacies to help distribute them. But a new report by the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis finds that as many as 750 counties don't have one of those pharmacies. (KUNR)
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Iowa counties face challenges in vaccine distribution

CPH alumna Danielle Pettit-Majewski (10MPH), administrator of the Washington County Public Health Department, described some of the challenges of tracking COVID vaccine doses and distribution. (KCRG)
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Mueller comments on COVID-19 and rural hospitals

For many rural Iowa counties, the first few months of the pandemic were relatively quiet. However, positive case numbers and hospitalizations began rising rapidly in the fall, overwhelming rural hospitals. "The biggest problem that we're seeing nationally is the stress on the personnel," says Keith Mueller, head of the UI Department of Health Management and Policy and the director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy.
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Parker comments on COVID-19 treatments, testing

Edith Parker, dean of the UI College of Public Health, is among a group of experts interviewed about innovations in COVID-19 treatments, testing, and care in the new year. Monoclonal antibodies, which imitate the body's immune response to a disease, are in the spotlight when it comes to treatments. "I think this may be really groundbreaking," Parker says. (AARP)
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CPH student discusses her role as a contact tracer

CPH student Madison Snitker recently discussed her work as a contact tracer with Johnson County Public Health. The job is one way she can directly help out during the pandemic. "I wanted to do something proactive where I could make an impact on my community," Snitker said. (KWWL)
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Parker comments on COVID vaccines, continued precautions

As the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines begins, Edith Parker, dean of the UI College of Public Health and a member of the IDPH's Infectious Disease Advisory Council, says it's important to wear masks and continue to social distance while vaccines are being distributed. For those hesitant about the vaccine, she added, "I am confident that the trials were done properly and with the utmost integrity." (Iowa State Daily)
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University of Iowa to implement asymptomatic COVID-19 screening

At a faculty senate meeting, CPH assistant professor of biostatistics Dan Sewell and professor of internal medicine and pathology Dan Diekema said the UI plans to expand surveillance testing and screening at the university, emphasizing the importance to test more than just symptomatic students. (Daily Iowan)
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Parker appointed to state’s Infectious Disease Advisory Council

As planning continues for distribution of FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine, the Iowa Department of Public Health has selected four University of Iowa experts to serve on its Infectious Disease Advisory Council (IDAC). Edith Parker, dean of the UI College of Public Health, has been named to the council.
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Petersen says Iowa’s face mask guidance doesn’t go far enough

In November, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds issued new statewide guidelines for mask-wearing in public -- but with a host of caveats. "If the message is to wear masks, all the caveats undercut that message," says CPH professor Christine Petersen. "We need clear language about social distancing and masks." (WIRED)
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Novak comments on surge in rural COVID cases

Coronavirus cases are exploding across Iowa, especially in rural areas. Eighty percent of the state's rural counties exceed what's considered a high prevalence of COVID-19, says Nicole Novak, CPH assistant research scientist. "That's concerning because the rate of increase is still accelerating," she says. (The Courier)
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Contact tracing offers CPH students hands-on lesson in public health

Dozens of students at the University of Iowa College of Public Health are working part-time as contact tracers for the public health departments in Linn and Johnson counties, identifying and notifying local residents who have been exposed to the novel coronavirus. (The Gazette)
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Record number of Iowa nursing homes have an active COVID-19 outbreak

The number of active COVID-19 outbreaks in Iowa nursing homes soared to a record 114 Thursday. Hari Sharma, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy, said nursing homes need to follow infection prevention guidance and do more testing. But he said individual Iowans also need to play a role in slowing the virus' spread. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Wehby comments on recent mask mandates

A growing number of Republican governors, including some who had written off mask mandates as unenforceable, are now requiring people to cover their faces in public. The mask mandates arrived as the nation faces a climbing death toll and skyrocketing case counts. "In some ways, we've chosen to make our policies reactive to the waves of the pandemic rather than getting ahead of it," said George Wehby, CPH professor of health management and policy. (Washington Post)
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Hamann comments on new bike turn boxes

New bike turn boxes painted on Iowa City streets are designed to prevent conflicts between motorists and bicycles at busy intersections. "Bike lanes and bike boxes help keep cyclists safe on the road because they give the rider designated space," says Cara Hamann, CPH clinical assistant professor. (Daily Iowan)
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Farm equipment designed for men presents challenges for female farmers

Farming is a physically demanding job, no matter your body type. Women, however, are at a particular disadvantage when it comes to farming equipment. "These were designed for people of a certain weight and certain height… pretty much reflective of the male population in the United States,” says alumna Josie Rudolphi (17PhD), who researches agricultural safety and health. (Illinois Newsroom)
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Contact tracers struggle to keep up with Iowa’s coronavirus cases

As coronavirus cases in Iowa surge, contact tracers are finding it challenging to meet the demand. "I personally have seen cases get a little more complex in terms of the number of people being exposed," says Taya Westfield, one of about 45 CPH students who work as contact tracers with Johnson County Public Health. (The Gazette)
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Gerr discusses COVID-19 testing in Iowa

Fred Gerr, professor emeritus of occupational and environmental health, recently discussed what factors Iowans should consider when perusing a COVID-19 test, the science of testing, and how rising COVID-19 cases may impact testing availability across the state. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Prepregnancy obesity may increase risk for preterm birth for Asian Americans

Using Asian-specific BMI cutoffs, Asian American mothers have an increased risk for preterm birth with overweight or obesity prior to pregnancy, according to College of Public Health researchers. (Healio)
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Deshpande named to UI presidential search committee

Anjali Deshpande, CPH clinical associate professor of epidemiology, has been named to the University of Iowa Presidential Search Committee. (Iowa Now)
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Cavanaugh comments on how Iowa’s positivity rates are calculated

The Iowa COVID-19 positivity rates may be even higher than the state has reported, in part because some numbers aren't made public. Joe Cavanaugh, CPH professor and head of biostatistics, says Iowa should report the total number of tests given in addition to the number of people tested. (The Gazette)
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Trauma care for injured farmers is often delayed

A study by CPH researchers found that farmers who require trauma care after suffering work-related injuries take nearly one hour longer to arrive at a hospital than their rural counterparts who are similarly injured while working in other industries. (Safety+Health)
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Mueller comments on COVID-19 in rural nursing homes

Nursing homes and other long-term care facilities house many elderly with underlying medical conditions, a population that is at the highest risk of death from COVID-19. "We're experiencing an overall spike [in cases], and nursing homes would be part of that," says CPH professor Keith Mueller about the spread to rural areas. (Washington Examiner)
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Disbanded search committee recommends DEI position report to UI president

The search committee to fill the University of Iowa's top diversity job has disbanded, but many members, including CPH assistant professor Paul Gilbert, first made recommendations that the head diversity officer report to the president instead of the provost. (Daily Iowan)
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Public health students help with contact tracing

About 45 College of Public Health students are teaming up with Johnson County Public Health to curb the spread of COVID-19 by working as contact tracers. "The ultimate goal is to obviously slow the spread of COVID-19 within our community and state in general," explained Taya Westfield, a CPH student and contact tracer. (Multiple sources)
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Helicopter vibrations launch stroke study

A team of UI researchers has discovered that low-frequency vibrations, such as those associated with helicopter transport, have the potential to change the way clot-busting drugs are administered to stroke patients. M. Bridget Zimmerman, CPH clinical professor of biostatistics, contributed to the research. (Medicine Iowa)
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Chorazy named associate dean for academic affairs

Margaret (Maggie) Chorazy has been named associate dean for academic affairs in the University of Iowa College of Public Health. Her appointment begins Nov. 1, 2020.
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Mueller: “Rural is not a refuge” from pandemic

As the coronavirus outbreak surges across the country, many rural communities are now seeing an unprecedented spike in infections and hospitalizations. "Rural is not a refuge," says Keith Mueller, a professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and director of the Rural Policy Research Institute. "These counties may be sparsely populated, but it also means that sparsely populated is not an assurance that spread won't happen." (NPR)
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College of Public Health students trace COVID-19

About 45 University of Iowa College of Public Health students are working as contact tracers at Johnson County Public Health in Iowa City. Learn more about these students who have the unique experience of working, learning, and living through the coronavirus pandemic.
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Peek-Asa elected to the National Academy of Medicine

Corinne Peek-Asa, associate dean for research and professor of occupational and environmental health in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine. (Iowa Now)
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Course teaches One Health concepts to rural health care providers

"Agricultural Safety and Health: The Core Course" offers many attendees their first exposure to both the concepts of One Health and the collaborative processes required to manage issues associated with animal, human, and environmental health, says course director Diane Rohlman. (Rural Monitor)
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New surge of COVID-19 cases hits rural areas

The current rise in coronavirus cases around the U.S. shows that the virus is moving into rural areas. "Slowly, day after day, you've seen the gap in the infection rates decline" between metropolitan areas and rural areas, said Fred Ullrich with the University of Iowa's College of Public Health. (STAT)
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Mueller discusses financial impact of pandemic on hospitals

The COVID-19 pandemic is giving hospital administrators and their health care providers ample opportunity in real time to learn new best practices to delivering medical care. Regarding the financial impact, CPH professor Keith Mueller suggested that hospitals prepare for the worst scenario by saving money or drawing credit more than they do now. (Times-Republican)
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Petersen comments on rally’s location

On Wednesday, President Trump held a rally in Des Moines at an aircraft hangar, causing concerns that the event could become a "superspreader" event. "A hangar does not have the same air circulation as the true outdoors do," said CPH professor Christine Petersen. (Hill Reporter)
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Gerr debunks mask myths

A Cedar Rapids daycare center won't require students or staff to wear masks, despite public health experts' recommendations. CPH Professor Fredric Gerr reiterated that masks don't lower oxygen levels. (KCRG)
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Experts say repeat cases of COVID-19 are possible

Christine Petersen, professor of epidemiology, recently commented on the likelihood of contracting COVID-19 for a second time. (Daily Iowan)
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City councils reject request to implement automated walk signals

Dru Mueller, a research dietician with the UI College of Public Health and UIHC, proposed that Iowa City and Coralville install automated signals at intersections instead of crosswalk buttons to help eliminate the spread of COVID-19. (Daily Iowan)
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Torner named Chief Infection Officer for Hawkeye athletes

Jim Torner, professor of epidemiology, has been named the Chief Infection Officer for the COVID-19 testing of Hawkeye athletes. Each Big Ten school was required to name one. (Hawk Central)
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Cavanaugh comments on mask mandates

Joe Cavanaugh, professor and head of biostatistics, commented on mask mandates, saying that "sending that message at the state level is, I think, an important step in emphasizing the importance of it." (Kaiser Health News)
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Petersen discusses the flu season during a pandemic

On a recent episode of River to River, Christine Petersen, CPH professor and director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, discussed what the flu season could look like in the midst of a pandemic. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Study links ADHD to increased likelihood of diabetes

Likelihood of developing diabetes was increased 50% among adults diagnosed with ADHD compared to those without ADHD, according to a study by Guifeng Xu, a PhD candidate in epidemiology, and colleagues. (Healio)
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Free training aims to keep young agricultural workers safe

A free online training aimed at supervisors of young agricultural workers is available in English and Spanish with a goal to protect younger workers. "Youth working in agriculture are injured more often both fatally and non-fatally than youth working in other industries," said Diane Rohlman, co-principal investigator on the project with Shelly Campo, both UI professors. (MCRI)
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Petersen notes that pets can catch COVID from their owners

Christine Petersen, director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the University of Iowa, says that pets who test positive for COVID-19 are likely to have caught the virus from their owners. "We need to remember that our pets, who live closely with us and literally sleep in our beds, can be exposed to high amounts of viruses," she says. (AAHA)
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Sharma comments on nursing home residents’ social isolation

As nursing homes are staying locked down indefinitely to try to protect residents from COVID-19, social isolation is a growing concern. "We have evidence on the negative impact of social isolation and loneliness," says Hari Sharma, CPH assistant professor. "And anything that facilities could do to help residents with this is going to be very helpful." (Iowa Public Radio)
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UI student decries Gov. Reynolds, Harreld’s response to COVID

In a guest editorial, CPH undergraduate Emma Hathaway, who is immunocompromised, criticizes Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds and UI President Bruce Harreld's response to COVID-19. (Press-Citizen)
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Casteel comments on online and in-person learning

Like many other professors, Carri Casteel, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health, debated how to best offer her class. Casteel sent an anonymous survey to her students and found that half of the students preferred going online. (Daily Iowan)
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Gerr advises postponing Johnson County trials

Citing the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak in Johnson County, officials last week planned to postpone jury trials here. CPH professor Fred Gerr was one of two health professionals to write statements about the danger of resuming jury trials. (Des Moines Register)
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Iowa makes headlines as a “red zone” state

Stephanie Leonard, an industrial hygienist at the University of Iowa, reviews Iowa's headline-making COVID statistics and steps to stop the virus. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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CPH to collaborate on project focusing on Alzheimer’s Disease, dementia

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) was awarded a three-year project to build capacity to promote Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia risk reduction and prevention, early diagnosis, management of comorbidities, and caregiver support. IDPH will involve a number of partners in the effort, including the University of Iowa College of Public Health. (IDPH)
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Petersen addresses skepticism about coronavirus

Christine Petersen, CPH professor of epidemiology, addressed recent comments made by Sen. Joni Ernst expressing skepticism about the COVID-19 death toll in the U.S. (Daily Iowan)
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Toilets may be spreading COVID-19

Toilet flushing may spread COVID-19, among other diseases. A 2018 study co-authored by CPH researchers found high concentrations of bioaerosols when a hospital toilet with no lid was flushed. (Washington Post)
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Experts call for more contact tracers in Iowa

Christine Petersen, an epidemiology professor at the University of Iowa, said there's no way a few hundred contact tracers can keep up when Iowa is adding thousands of new confirmed coronavirus cases per week. "That's just terrible math," said Petersen. (Des Moines Register)
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Smart devices can help track illnesses

Smartphones and other connected devices can provide powerful real-time epidemiology tools that can be useful in tracking illnesses. A 2018 study by CPH assistant professor Aaron Miller found that anonymised smart thermometer data captured real-time Influenza Like Illness (ILI) activity at national and regional levels in the US. (Express Healthcare)
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High BPA exposure may increase all-cause mortality

Exposure to the endocrine-disrupting chemical bisphenol A was significantly and positively associated with all-cause mortality in U.S. adults, according to an analysis led by Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology. (Healio)
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Cavanaugh says antigen test results should not be discounted

Iowa will start counting the results of antigen tests for coronavirus, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Thursday. CPH professor Joe Cavanaugh said that not including the tests could skew infection rates. (Des Moines Register)
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Researchers say definition of those most at risk for COVID-19 should be expanded

A recent commentary co-authored by CPH researchers argues that the definition of people most at risk for COVID-19 illness and death should be expanded beyond biological factors to include social factors.
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Cavanaugh comments on problems in Iowa’s reporting of COVID data

Iowa Department of Public Health leaders said they were fixing a computer problem that had backdated recent coronavirus test results. The issue raised concerns among outside observers, including UI biostatistics professor Joseph Cavanaugh, who said the discrepancy "seems like a major oversight." (Des Moines Register)
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Study finds BPA linked to increased death risk

Research by CPH assistant professor Wei Bao and colleagues found that participants in the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2003-2008 who had higher levels of bisphenol A (BPA) in their urine had a greater risk of dying by the end of the study. (Newsweek)
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Novak comments on ICE raids and barriers to mental health care

Immigration raids in Mississippi have torn dozens of families apart, leaving communities shattered. Nicole Novak, CPH assistant research scientist, says immigrants face numerous barriers to receiving mental health care. (Clarion Ledger)
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Hamann weighs in on decline in vehicle-bicycle crashes

Between March and June 2020, the number of vehicle-to-bicycle crashes in Iowa fell 34% over 2019. Cara Hamann, CPH assistant clinical professor, thinks the decrease is related to fewer cars being on the road. (Des Moines Register)
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Research finds link between pyrethroids, deaths from heart disease

A team of researchers at the UI College of Public Health examined the long-term effects on mortality of pyrethroid exposure among a nationally representative sample of 2,116 American adults. (New York Times)
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Baker comments on countries’ strategies to fight pandemic

CPH assistant professor Kelly Baker recently discussed ways other countries have tackled the pandemic, noting that countries that adopted national mandates proved to have more effective strategies than the U.S. (Daily Iowan)
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Gerr comments on online versus in-person learning

Fred Gerr, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, was recently interviewed about the debate over online versus in-person learning for Iowa K-12 schools this fall. (Multiple sources)
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Study finds injured farmers take longer to get trauma care

A study co-authored by CPH researchers Corinne Peek-Asa and Jim Torner shows that farmers who suffer an on-the-job injury take more time to arrive at a hospital that provides the specialized trauma care they need than workers in other industries. (Multiple sources)
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Baker discusses challenges facing custodians during pandemic

Kelly Baker, CPH assistant professor, says janitors and custodians are often the invisible front-line workforce in the fight against COVID-19 transmission. As the nation continues to reopen, she said, janitors are placed at a higher risk when it comes to doing their job. (Daily Iowan)
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Cavanaugh comments on masks, COVID-19 modeling

Joe Cavanaugh, CPH professor and lead on the UI's COVID-19 modeling application, said the widespread use of face masks and personal protective equipment would slow hospitalizations and deaths in Iowa. (Globe Gazette)
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Thorne: Science needs to guide our decision making

CPH professor Peter Thorne, who served six years on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Science Advisory Board, recently spoke about the need for science to guide decision making for global issues such as climate change and COVID-19. (The Gazette)
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Rural hospitals hang on as pandemic reaches smaller communities

To prepare for a potential surge in COVID-19 patients, rural hospitals had to forgo many of their most profitable operations. That means a lot of small hospitals are now in trouble, says Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis. (Pew Charitable Trust )
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Public health experts say herd immunity isn’t the solution

Trying to establish herd immunity against COVID-19 right now would cause more harm than good, say UI public health experts, including CPH faculty members Margaret Chorazy and Christine Petersen. (Daily Iowan)
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Petersen comments on students’ return to campus

Students will return to the UI campus this fall from various COVID-19 hotspots, but "basically we're just as risky as any other place," says CPH professor Christine Petersen about Iowa City. (Daily Iowan)
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Experts concerned over public’s disconnect from pandemic reality

The disconnect between the reality of the pandemic and the American public's behavior worries public health experts. "We are nearing the point where pretty much most of the gains we had achieved have been lost," adds CPH professor Christine Petersen. (The Hill)
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Gerr comments on challenges of reopening schools

As schools struggle to form plans for reopening, CPH professor Fred Gerr cautions that it's important not to write off the risk for children. Deaths among children are rare, but some children do get very ill, he said. (Minnesota Reformer)
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CPH students working as contact tracers

Undergraduate students Nate Savage, Briani Baboolal, and Rebecca Nyangufi are currently working as contact tracers at Johnson County Public Health. Their goal is to pinpoint both where someone contracted COVID-19 and who else may have been exposed. (The Gazette)
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UI researchers use aerosol-transmission calculator to assess classroom safety

UI researchers are using an aerosol transmission calculator to test the number of small particles in classrooms on campus. UI College of Engineering professor Charles Stanier is working with CPH professor Tom Peters and CPH graduate student David Rabidoux to adapt the tool for UI classrooms. (Daily Iowan)
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Mapping where people wear masks

An article looking at who wears face coverings in the U.S. cited a recent study published in Health Affairs by CPH researchers Wei Lyu and George Wehby. Their study found that state mask requirements appeared to have reduced virus transmission. (New York Times)
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Parker named to Fitwel Academic Advisory Group

Edith Parker, CPH dean and professor, is a member of the Fitwel Academic Advisory Group. The group provides expert insights on COVID-19 and ensures best practices for viral mitigation in the building industry. (PR Newswire)
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Petersen comments on uptick in COVID-19 cases

Local public health experts, including CPH professor Christine Petersen, blame the recent spike in positive COVID-19 cases in Johnson County on a lack of social distancing and lack of face coverings. (Daily Iowan)
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CPH partners on Fueling the Future project

A grant from the CPH's Business Leadership Network is helping to fund a training program in Muscatine called "Fueling the Future." CPH researchers will also help evaluate the design and outcomes of the project. (Muscatine Journal)
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Iowa courts resume face-to-face services with safety precautions

Face-to-face court services resumed in Iowa following health and safety recommendations provided by numerous experts including Fred Gerr, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health. (The Gazette)
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External funding supports a wide range of research at Iowa

Research funding at the University of Iowa in Fiscal Year 2020 is helping power a wide array of investigations, including CPH professors Patrick O'Shaughnessy and Peter Thorne's work on developing improved personal protective equipment. (OVPR)
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Gilbert discusses alcohol consumption and spread of COVID-19

Paul Gilbert, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, was interviewed about the role that alcohol consumption may play in contracting and transmitting COVID-19. (Daily Iowan)
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COVID upsurge demands all-hands effort

Stephanie Leonard, an industrial hygienist at the University of Iowa, recently wrote about the uptick in COVID-19 cases in Iowa and the need to adhere to the practices proven successful in limiting transmission. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Study examines the effects of state mask mandates

Recently, CPH researchers Wei Lyu and George Wehby published a paper examining the effects of mask mandates. They looked at states which required masks in public and estimated that as many as 230,000–450,000 COVID-19 cases were possibly averted by mandating face coverings. (Multiple sources)
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Low-cost approach may lower adolescent pesticide exposure

Unsafe application of pesticides is a major health risk among young agricultural workers in low- and middle-income countries. To help address that problem, CPH professor Diane Rohlman and collaborators in Egypt developed an intervention that improved the workplace behaviors and hygiene practices of adolescent field laborers in that country. (NIEHS)
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Nonnenmann comments on COVID-19 transmission, toilet flushing

As the country starts to open up, experts say it's worth being cautious when using public bathrooms. A new model of SARS-CoV-2 contamination suggests that "there could be a hazard," says CPH associate professor Matthew Nonnenmann. (Popular Science)
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Novak discusses the impact of immigration raids on Latino communities

Nicole Novak, an assistant research scientist in the College of Public Health, co-authored an issue brief titled "An Unnatural Disaster: The Impact of Immigration Raids on Latino Communities." A related podcast is also available. (Immigration Initiative at Harvard)
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Gerr discusses return-to-school plans in Iowa

Fred Gerr, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, recently took part in a panel discussion on plans for Iowa students returning to school this fall. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Researchers look at effectiveness of masks in reducing COVID-19 spread

A report looking at the effectiveness of masks in reducing the spread of COVID-19 mentions a study by CPH researchers George Wehby and Wei Lyu (segment starts at 10:49). (NBC Nightly News)
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Vander Weg named new head of community and behavioral health

The University of Iowa College of Public Health named Mark Vander Weg the new head of the Department of Community and Behavioral Health, effective July 1. In his new position, Vander Weg said he plans to focus on issues of health equity and social justice. (Daily Iowan)
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Study suggests face mask use in public helps mitigate COVID-19 spread

An estimated 230,000 to 450,000 cases of COVID-19 were prevented in the states that enacted requirements for mask use between April 8 and May 15, a study reported Tuesday found. "The findings suggest that requiring face mask use in public might help in mitigating COVID-19 spread," wrote Wei Lyu and George Wehby with the UI College of Public Health. (CNN)
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Janssen discusses food systems and the pandemic

Brandi Janssen, CPH clinical assistant professor of occupational and environmental health, recently spoke about the effects of COVID-19 on the food system, both at the commercial level and at the local level. (Obermann Center)
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Surges in COVID-19 cases raise lockdown questions

Sharp increases in coronavirus cases in several states have elected officials considering pauses in reopening their economies--or maybe not. "I don't think there will be new shutdowns. There isn't the political will to do it any longer it seems," said Christine Petersen, an epidemiologist at the University of Iowa. "Now we are in the pandemic wild west." (The Hill)
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Can studying sewage reveal COVID-19 outbreaks?

Kelly Baker, CPH assistant professor of occupational and environmental health, studies sanitation and clean water. She weighed in on whether a sewage study would work to detect COVID-19 in a population. (The Gazette)
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IPRC reminds parents about summer safety for kids

Lisa Roth, deputy director of the UI Injury Prevention Research Center, says children are more likely to get hurt during the pandemic than in summers past since parents have a lot of additional distractions. "We're encouraging families to really focus in on supervision as they're engaging in their summer activities," Roth says. (Multiple sources)
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As new crises emerge, climate change continues

The intersecting crises of a global pandemic, police brutality, and the continuing effects of climate change are being felt around the world. CPH professor Peter Thorne was a recent guest on a program discussing these crises. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Using data to develop the best possible prevention strategies

Brandi Janssen, CPH faculty member and director of I-CASH, interviewed two members of the UI's COVID-19 modeling team, Joe Cavanaugh and Grant Brown, about how and why public health models are an important strategy to use in the case of a new disease outbreak. (Lincoln Journal Star)
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Modeling tool shows how COVID-19 infections could be reduced

The likely number of cases of COVID-19 and deaths due to the virus could be decreased by thousands in the next few months if Iowans were required to wear personal protective equipment in public, even if social distancing is relaxed, a modeling tool created by the UI College of Public Health COVID-19 response team shows. (Little Village)
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UI coronavirus modeling application projects future course of COVID-19 in Iowa

A new University of Iowa website developed by public health researchers tracking the COVID-19 pandemic provides an interactive tool to model the effects various mitigation measures could have on the future course of the disease in Iowa. The tool is a free public service to state and local policymakers, business leaders, and others.
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I-CASH pilots ROPS rebate program

I-CASH is working with the National ROPS Rebate Program to provide funding for Iowa farmers who are on the waiting list to add a Rollover Protective Structure (ROPS) to their tractor. When used correctly with a seat belt, ROPS are 99% effective in preventing injury or death in the case of a rollover. (Alive & Well Newsletter)
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Public heath experts cautious about summer sports, COVID-19 risk

CPH faculty members Christine Petersen and Joe Cavanaugh recently weighed in on Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds' decision to allow high school baseball and softball and youth baseball and softball to resume June 1. (Des Moines Register)
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Health leaders warn some rural Iowa hospitals will not survive

CPH professor Keith Mueller said in a recent interview that COVID-19 gave hospitals a double whammy this spring because it increased demand for coronavirus-related services while decreasing the revenue supplied by the suspended non-emergency services. (Des Moines Register)
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Student Kaci Ginn comments on rural response to COVID-19

Kaci Ginn, a CPH undergraduate student interning at Jones County Public Health in Anamosa, Iowa, recently was asked to provide her perspective on rural communities' response to the pandemic. (NNPHI)
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Preventing and controlling COVID-19 on the farm

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has introduced up-to-date guidelines for farm workers continuing operations during the COVID-19 outbreak. Additionally, the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health offers COVID-19-related materials and resources for agricultural workers during these unprecedented times. (GPCAH)
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Peek-Asa offers advice for employees enforcing mask policies

Store security guards are emerging as the first line of defense against customers who refuse to follow mask and social distancing requirements. CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa advises guards to take calm, non-confrontational tones with customers.
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UI experts warn relaxation of guidelines will likely lead to increase in COVID-19 infections

University of Iowa experts warned this week that premature easing of social distancing rules could spark a coronavirus surge, adding that encouraging the public to wear plastic face shields could substantially reduce the danger. (Des Moines Register)
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Roth offers pointers on summer water safety

Lisa Roth, deputy director of the UI Injury Prevention Research Center, talked about drowning prevention and water safety for children during COVID-19 at the weekly City of Mason City press conference (starting at minute 3:28).
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Collaboration leads to grant on PPE materials that capture and kill pathogens

Engineers at the University of Iowa and the University Notre Dame are collaborating with CPH faculty member Patrick O'Shaughnessy to develop personal protective equipment (PPE) that captures and kills viral pathogens, thereby improving PPE performance and reusability. (College of Engineering)
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Mueller comments on challenges facing hospitals

CPH professor Keith Mueller discussed challenges hospitals face in responding to COVID-19 as well as steps needed to ensure access to telehealth services. (WalletHub)
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Campaign reminds people to take COVID-19 precautions outdoors

CPH doctoral student Anne Abbott has been working with Iowa parks and trail groups to spread the word about social distancing outside. (The Gazette)
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Study compares COVID-19 rates, stay-at-home orders in Iowa and Illinois

Stay-at-home orders can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 -- and could have helped states like Iowa -- according to a study authored by Wei Lyu and George Wehby and published in JAMA Network Open. (Multiple sources)
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Mueller comments on federal assistance for rural hospitals

Iowa hospitals have received millions in federal relief aid, but small rural hospitals still face uncertain financial futures. Assistance isn’t covering all of the expenses, especially for hospitals treating COVID-19 patients, says CPH professor Keith Mueller. (Oskaloosa News)
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UI researchers project continued spread of COVID-19

Researchers at the University of Iowa told state public health officials in early May that social distancing measures have been effective at slowing the spread of the coronavirus in the state, but they warned against relaxing those policies too soon. Researchers submitted two reports to the Iowa Department of Public Health on April 29 and May 4. (Multiple sources)
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Study finds weight loss before bariatric surgery reduces mortality risk

A new study shows weight loss before bariatric surgery was associated with a lower risk of 30-day mortality. The findings from CPH investigator Yangbo Sun and colleagues could help inform future updates of clinical guidelines regarding bariatric surgery. (HCPLive)
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Choose safety to control infection spread

As states re-open and the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Stephanie Leonard, an industrial hygienist with the CPH, urges individuals to practice caution, not overconfidence. (Illinois Farmer Today)
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Brown discusses complexities of COVID-19 modeling

Grant Brown, assistant professor of biostatistics and member of the UI COVID-19 modeling team, discusses contact behavior and the many other complex variables involved in creating predictive disease models. (KWIT)
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Sioux City parks using new signs to reinforce COVID-19 guidelines

Sioux City Parks and Recreation staff is posting signs in prominent parks around town to encourage park users to follow health guidelines regarding COVID-19. The signs were designed by students from the University of Iowa College of Public Health. (KTIV)
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First class of UI public health majors ready to make a difference

The first graduating class of the public health undergraduate program at the University of Iowa will receive degrees in May, entering a world where public health now plays a key role in daily life. (Daily Iowan)
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Iowa’s small hospitals face steep financial challenges

Iowa's smallest hospitals could be heading for a "financial disaster" due to the COVID-19 pandemic, says CPH alumnus Todd Linden (87MA). Alumnus Steve Slessor (08MHA) also weighed in on the topic, and RUPRI supplied data on rural cases of COVID-19. (The Gazette)
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CPH research team submits COVID-19 reports to IDPH

Researchers from the University of Iowa College of Public Health submitted a report to the Iowa Department of Public Health that presented predictions on COVID-19 activity in Iowa, including expected hospitalizations and deaths. The team also submitted another report that critiqued a frequently cited model developed by researchers at the University of Washington. (Multiple sources)
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Unique UI collaborations helping extend use, decontaminate PPE

University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics was one of the first in the U.S. to use an innovative technology to extend the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). UIHC is now working with other leading medical centers across the country to refine the process, thanks to a partnership with CPH professor Patrick O'Shaughnessy. (Iowa Now)
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Field discusses radon exposure and lung cancer

CPH professor Bill Field was recently interviewed about the links between radon exposure, smoking, and lung cancer. (ASCO Post)
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Lehmler studies health effects of PCBs

Hans-Joachim Lehmler, CPH professor and researcher with the Iowa Superfund Research Program, studies the neurotoxicity of PCBs. Lehmler and his team are looking at how PCBs affect the developing brain. (Daily Iowan)
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Multilingual video series helps provide COVID-19 information

An Iowa-based health partnership has created a multilingual video series to help inform immigrants and refugees about COVID-19 and curtail the spread of misinformation. (Daily Iowan)
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Big Ten Conference announces task force for emerging infectious diseases

The Big Ten Conference announced the formation of a 14-member task force to provide counsel and medical advice to ensure the health and safety of students, coaches, administrators, and fans. The University of Iowa's representative is Edith Parker, dean of the College of Public Health. (Big Ten Conference)
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RUPRI data brief on rural COVID-19 cases cited

A report on how rural hospitals are struggling financially during the coronavirus pandemic notes that as of April 18, more than 80% of rural counties nationwide reported positive cases of COVID-19, according to a RUPRI data brief. (CNN)
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Businesses deploy a range of tactics as they reopen

As workplaces reopen, government guidelines offer some direction, but companies must fine-tune responses to specific workplace situations, says CPH professor Renée Anthony. (Wall Street Journal)
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Petersen comments on Test Iowa initiative

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds hopes to expand coronavirus testing with a new initiative called Test Iowa. CPH associate professor Christine Petersen said the state should consider hiring students about to graduate with a master's degree in public health to help staff the program. (KCCI)
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CPH experts will produce Iowa-specific pandemic models

The Iowa Department of Public Health and the University of Iowa College of Public Health reached a formal agreement to work together to create Iowa-specific pandemic models on April 7. (The Gazette)
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Novak discusses disparities in Iowa’s COVID-19 cases

Nicole Novak, an assistant research scientist at the UI College of Public Health, was interviewed about Iowa's racial and ethnic disparities in COVID-19 cases. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Iowa Superfund Research Program receives $11.4M renewal from NIH

The Iowa Superfund Research Program, a University of Iowa research group that includes numerous College of Public Health faculty, has received a five-year, $11.4 million grant renewal from the National Institutes of Health to continue study of airborne polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). (Iowa Now)
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Sharma discusses infection control in nursing homes

Hari Sharma, CPH assistant professor, discussed several aspects that can make nursing homes more susceptible to COVID-19 and other outbreaks. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Rural injuries, violence may increase during COVID-19

While isolating at home and social distancing are critical to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, they increase the risk for abuse, suicide, and child injuries at home. In rural America these risks could be greater. (IPRC blog)
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Videos inform immigrant, refugee communities about COVID-19

Will Story, CPH assistant professor, worked with the Congolese Health Partnership to create a video series that provides accessible information about the coronavirus in several different languages. (UI International Programs)
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College of Public Health to help develop coronavirus forecasting tool

Sarah Reisetter, deputy director of the Iowa Department of Public Health, said the state is working with the University of Iowa College of Public Health to develop a forecasting tool for coronavirus. (Des Moines Register)
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Anthony comments on normalizing mask wearing

CPH professor Renee Anthony says when wearing protective gear is normalized, "infected persons are much more likely to wear [it], which, combined with social distancing, has been helpful to slow the rate of [coronavirus] infection." (The Appeal)
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Novak provides coronavirus information in Spanish

Nicole Novak, CPH assistant research scientist, provided information about coronavirus as part of a video series for the Latino community in Iowa. (El Trueque Iowa)
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Iowa farmers navigate around coronavirus

Brandi Janssen, CPH clinical assistant professor, commented on the effects of COVID-19 on small farmers, including changing distribution systems and the impact of having many customers facing layoffs or salary cuts. (U.S. News & World Report)
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Novak comments on ICE reductions, coronavirus risk

Nicole Novak, CPH assistant research scientist, co-authored an article suggesting that mistrust will still persist and exacerbate coronavirus risk throughout mixed-status immigrant communities despite changes to immigration enforcement operations. (University of Michigan)
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Nonnenmann answers COVID-19 questions

Matthew Nonnenmann, associate professor of occupational and environmental health, answered listeners' questions about COVID-19 and the impact of the novel coronavirus. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Afifi talks about challenges facing college students

Rima Afifi, professor and interim head of community and behavioral health, recently discussed the challenges college students face during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Anthony discusses ways to stop spread of COVID-19

Renee Anthony, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, recently was interviewed about preventing the spread of COVID-19. (KICI-LP radio)
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Parker, Pentella discuss COVID-19

Edith Parker, dean of the UI College of Public Health, and Mike Pentella, director of the State Hygienic Public Health Laboratory, recently spoke about the quickly emerging COVID-19 emergency. (Iowa Public Radio)
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CPH student says outbreak provides students with real-life experience

CPH graduate student Hailey Boudreau says that the COVID-19 outbreak is preparing her for her future career in public health. "As a public health student, watching your superiors teach [you] how to handle situations appropriately is fantastic," Boudreau said. "I have been directed by the right people, and now I feel confident to handle circumstances like this." (Daily Iowan)
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Skipping breakfast frequently may be bad for your heart

A 2019 study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that skipping breakfast — on its own — was associated with an increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease. "Non-breakfast eaters had 87% higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease," says Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology. (Insider)
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Janssen notes many factors add to farmers’ stress

Brandi Janssen, CPH clinical assistant professor and director of Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, says more funding is needed to address multiple aspects that affect farmers' health and well-being. (Aberdeen News)
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UI study finds dental fluorosis generally less noticeable over time

Alexandra Curtis, a PhD candidate in biostatistics, co-authored a study suggesting that mild and moderate dental fluorosis (the appearance of faint white lines or streaks on the teeth) is generally less noticeable over time. (ADA)
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Kaskie discusses age-friendly workplace survey

Brian Kaskie, associate professor of health management and policy, recently presented a new report at the event "Age-Friendly Workplace Programs: Recruiting and Retaining Experienced Employees." (Forbes)
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BLN Community Grant recipients announced

Non-profit groups in Muscatine and Bettendorf are among the funding recipients for the fifth annual round of the University of Iowa Community Grant Program. Since 2015, the UI College of Public Health has funded various public health-related initiatives and projects in communities across Iowa through its Business Leadership Network. (Muscatine Journal)
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Chemicals, climate among top stressors for Midwestern farmers

Chemical safety, equipment use, finance, and weather all stood out as top stressors among Midwestern farmers who responded to a recent survey from the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health. (The Gazette)
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Staying ahead of the opioid epidemic in Iowa

Carri Casteel, associate director of the UI Injury Prevention Research Center, recently discussed strategies that Iowa can take to address the opioid epidemic. (Iowa Public Radio)
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IPRC report lists recommendations to address overdoses in Iowa

Following concerns about the unique challenges that rural areas face in combating the opioid epidemic, the University of Iowa Injury Prevention Research Center recently released a report outlining five priorities of reducing overdoses in Iowa. (Daily Iowan)
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Researchers study impact of regulation on e-cigarette usage

A team of CPH researchers recently published a paper on how e-cigarette regulation in different states correlates to usage in U.S. adults. (Daily Iowan)
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Arora discusses farmers’ stressors, safety concerns

Kanika Arora, assistant professor of health management and policy, discussed the findings of a survey that asked farmers about their top stressors and safety concerns. (Agribusiness Radio Network)
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State, local stakeholders provide recommendations for reducing overdoses

A new report from the University of Iowa's Injury Prevention Research Center provides five recommendations aimed at reducing opioid overdoses in Iowa. (KCRG)
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Report details how communities can help stop opioid epidemic

This past fall, the Injury Prevention Research Center convened a group of stakeholders to consider important next steps Iowa can take in response to the opioid epidemic. A new report identifies the five most important priorities. (Des Moines Register)
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Field comments on city requirement to test rentals for radon

Starting July 1, Iowa City will require property owners and managers of rental properties to verify units have been tested for radon. It's possible one-third of rental units will have elevated levels and need mitigation systems, estimates CPH professor Bill Field. (Press-Citizen)
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Peek-Asa to speak on preventing childhood trauma

Ahead of her delivery of the UI's 37th annual Presidential Lecture on Feb. 16, College of Public Health Associate Dean for Research Corinne Peek-Asa talks about the long-term effects of childhood trauma and how to prevent them in a Q&A. (Iowa Now)
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Arora’s survey documents farmers’ concerns and stressors

A news report on issues motivating farmers and other rural voters taking part in the Iowa caucuses referenced a recent survey by Kanika Arora and colleagues in the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health. The survey results showed that financial stressors dominated farmers' mental health concerns, along with safety concerns. (Yahoo Finance)
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CPH alumna featured in Flagler College Gargoyle

CPH alumna Joanna Krajewski is now a strategic communication professor at Flagler College in St. Augustine, Fla., where she was recently profiled by the student newspaper, the Gargoyle.
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CPH alumnus featured in Netflix docuseries

A College of Public Health epidemiology alumnus is featured prominently in a new Netflix documentary series released last week called "Pandemic: How to Prevent and Outbreak."
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Negative pregnancy outcomes associated with marijuana use

A study by epidemiology Prof. Paul Romitti, published this month in the Journal of Perinatology, has found that exposure to marijuana during pregnancy may have adverse effects on fetal growth and infant development. (CR Gazette)
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Watkins comments on new federal rule raising legal age for smoking

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently changed the federal minimum age to purchase tobacco from 18 to 21, some anti-smoking advocates say that’s not enough. Shannon Watkins, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, says states also need to look at other efforts that discourage teen smoking, like increasing the tobacco tax. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Testing for radon: An easy and important safety step for your home

Testing your home to determine levels of indoor radon gas is the first step to protecting against dangerous concentrations of this carcinogen. Read more about how easy it is to test for radon in the latest 'Safety Watch' column by UI occupational safety manager Stephanie Leonard. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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NY Times cites Novak’s eugenics research in article on racial bias in health care

Research by Nicole Novak examining a California eugenics law which forced or coerced thousands of sterilizations among Latinas/os was cited in a New York Times article about the impact of racial bias on health outcomes. Novak is an assistant research scientist in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health.
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Arora discusses physician attitudes on medical cannabis use

Prof. Kanika Arora of Health Management and Policy discussed the results of her survey of Iowa physicians and their knowledge and attitude toward Iowa's new medical cannabis law (Iowa Public Radio).
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Bao research shows link between pesticides, heart disease deaths

A new study authored by Prof. Wei Bao suggests that people who have higher levels of a chemical in their body that indicates exposure to commonly used insecticides die of cardiovascular disease at a significantly higher rate.
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Ponseti Method for clubfoot highlighted in book

Tom Cook, CPH professor emeritus, has written a book about Dr. Ignacio Ponseti and his pioneering technique to treat clubfoot. (Press-Citizen)
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Wehby comments on Mendelian randomization

CPH professor George Wehby commented on the use of Mendelian randomization analyses in studies. (Nature)
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Lynch discusses residential radon

Charles Lynch, CPH professor of epidemiology, recently spoke about the health effects of radon and what Iowans can do to reduce their risk. (KCRG)
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Field cited in story on public housing and radon

CPH professor Bill Field is quoted in an article that reveals public housing authorities across the country have refused to find and remove radon gas from inside tenants' homes. (The Oregonian)
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Grants benefit community health

The BLN Community Grant Program, which helps fund projects that benefit community health, is now accepting proposals. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Peek-Asa discusses farm injuries

CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa recently discussed the findings of a study about on-farm injuries. (Multiple sources)
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Rural Restaurant Healthy Options Program highlighted

The Rural Restaurant Healthy Options Program initiated by the UI PRC was recently showcased as a sustainable rural health program. (Revcycle Intelligence)
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Peek-Asa applauds proposed legislation addressing farmer suicide

CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa says an important piece of the proposed Seeding Rural Resilience Act centers on reducing the stigma and barriers around seeking mental health care. (Radio Iowa)
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Chrischilles comments on medication recommendation

CPH professor Elizabeth Chrischilles commented on a recent recommendation to expand use of a medication for cardiovascular disease risk reduction beyond its current indication. (MedPage Today)
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UI research looks at breast cancer in young women

Recent research by the UI's Paul Romitti shows that the number of women in their 20s with early-stage breast cancer is increasing, and their survival rate is decreasing. (Daily Iowan)
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Hy-Vee dietician takes on Active Ottumwa role

Active Ottumwa, a research project started by the UI Prevention Research Center in partnership with a community advisory board, is transitioning to a community-based organization led by local Hy-Vee stores. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Collaboration aims to improve public health in Iowa City

Through a new collaboration entitled "Community Prescription," various Iowa City community organizations hope to spark change in improving neighborhood health. (Daily Iowan)
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Flu shot may aid heart bypass recovery

Getting a flu shot before heart bypass surgery may head off inflammation and reduce recovery time, a new study suggests. But more research is needed to replicate the findings, says CPH professor Jennifer Robinson. (AHA)
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Afifi, Bao weigh in on e-cigarettes

As legislators debate the regulation of e-cigarettes, health experts, including CPH professors Rima Afifi and Wei Bao, are weighing in on the risks--and potential benefits--of the devices. (The Gazette)
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Field comments on the importance of radon awareness

Radon, a naturally occurring radioactive gas, can seep from the soil into homes. "Radon is a problem all over the U.S., but in the Midwest, you have to be especially aware of its risks,” says CPH professor Bill Field. (Wellmark)
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Research finds breast cancer incidence rising among young women

A growing percentage of younger women are getting breast cancer -- with rates among 20-somethings increasing the fastest, according to new University of Iowa research led by CPH professor Paul Romitti. (Multiple sources)
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Mueller talks about rural pharmacy closings

Pharmacy closures across the nation have hit rural areas particularly hard. "Over the last 16 years or so, about 16 percent of the independently owned pharmacies in rural America have closed," said Keith Mueller, director of the Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis. (KUNC)
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Peek-Asa comments on reducing rural suicides

CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa says a key aspect of farmers' stress and suicide risk is uncontrollable business factors, such as weather, farm financing, and tariffs. (KCRG)
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Peek-Asa comments on rural suicide rates

CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa and colleagues have found suicide rates were 45 percent higher for people in rural areas, and farmers stood out as having even higher rates compared to the general population. (Radio Iowa)
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Enekwechi honored with UI Distinguished Alumni Award

Adaeze Enekwechi (07PhD) received the Distinguished Recent Graduate Award for her integrity and success as a health care executive. (Daily Iowan)
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CPH researchers studying recovery from alcohol use disorders

Paul Gilbert, CPH assistant professor, is leading a study to better understand behavioral change strategies and recovery from alcohol use disorders. (Daily Iowan)
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Study finds increasing number of young adults use e-cigarettes

A team of CPH investigators led by Wei Bao found a dramatic increase in young adults who use e-cigarettes. (Multiple sources)
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UI researchers seek ways to reduce opioid use, chronic pain

A University of Iowa pain researcher has won two grants as part of a national effort to improve treatments for pain and cut the use of opioids. (Radio Iowa)
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Iowa researchers receive $10 million grant to study maternal mortality

UI researchers, including several from epidemiology, will partner with the IDPH on a five-year, $10 million federal grant to study and improve maternal health outcomes in the state. (Gazette)
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Peek-Asa discusses why teens do dangerous challenges

Corinne Peek-Asa, CPH professor and associate dean for research, says teens are tempted to take part in dangerous social media challenges because "one of their developmental cognitive jobs at that age is to figure out their own internal compass for risk taking, social placement, and how they fit into their world." (Newsweek)
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Author Carl Klaus reads from his latest work at CPHB

Carl Klaus, founder of the UI nonfiction writing program, read from his latest work, "Coming of Age: An Octogenarian’s Chronicle" at the College of Public Health on Oct. 3. (Daily Iowan)
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Parker discusses CBPR in India

CPH dean and professor Edith Parker recently discussed her community-based participatory research work in rural communities and India. (NIEHS podcast)
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CTSDMC researchers part of national effort to curb opioid use

Christopher Coffey, CPH professor of biostatistics and director of the Clinical Trials Statistical and Data Management Center, will collaborate with UI colleagues on a four-year, $6.5 million award from NINDS to establish a Clinical Coordinating Center for the Acute to Chronic Pain Signatures Program. (CCOM)
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Story co-leads study on intimate partner violence in India

CPH assistant professor Will Story is co-leading a study of intimate partner violence in peri-urban India — parts of India that experienced rapid change in socioeconomic contrast. (Daily Iowan)
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Iowa scientists project dangerous heat levels

Model projections from the latest Iowa Climate Statement indicate that Iowans should expect extreme and dangerous heat events to become more severe in the near future. CPH professor Peter Thorne worked as a collaborator on the statement. (Daily Iowan)
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College uses ITTA funds to connect students globally

Several CPH faculty members used an Innovations in Teaching with Technology Award to create a course that connected students around the world in real time to examine health care equity. (OTLT)
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Nutrition experts focus on food insecurity

CPH professor Linda Snetselaar is editor-in-chief of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which devoted its latest issue to food insecurity and its far-reaching consequences. (EurekAlert)
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Novak studies impact on communities after immigration raids

CPH research scientist Nicole Novak is studying the social and economic impacts on communities following an immigration raid. (Multiple sources)
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Kaskie discusses intersection between cannabis, opioid use, and older persons

CPH associate professor Brian Kaskie leads the Cannabis and Older Persons Study at the University of Iowa, where he is examining the increasing use of cannabis among older persons and evaluating the implications for opioid abuse and end of life care. (Forbes)
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Iowa hosts Birnbaum’s last community forum

Water quality took center stage in Mt. Vernon, Iowa, at a recent public meeting held by NIEHS and National Toxicology Program director Linda Birnbaum. Her upcoming retirement makes the Iowa forum the last of 25 such meetings she has held during her tenure. (NIH Record)
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Climate report: Severe heat waves will likely threaten Iowa

According to this year's Iowa Climate Statement, a report signed by more than 200 Iowa scientists, the state is slated to see dangerously hot weather in the coming decades. Extreme heat is a serious health concern, notes CPH professor Peter Thorne. (IPR)
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Watkins: Regulating e-cigarettes will help both adolescents and adults

In an opinion piece, CPH assistant professor Shannon Watkins writes, "By leaving e-cigarettes on the market, the FDA has abdicated its role to review the scientific evidence carefully and protect the public health." (Press-Citizen)
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Askelson reflects on the evaluation of Iowa’s 1115 Waiver

CPH assistant professor Natoshia Askelson shares some of the lessons learned during the process of evaluating Iowa's Healthy Behavior Program 1115 Waiver. (Academy Health)
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Hamann comments on bicycling safety study

CPH clinical assistant professor Cara Hamann recently published a study that found children are getting mixed messages about bike safety. (Daily Iowan)
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RUPRI contributes to Smithsonian exhibit on rural wealth

The traveling Smithsonian exhibit "Crossroads: Change in Rural America" was informed by a comprehensive description of rural wealth developed by the Rural Policy Research Institute based in the UI College of Public Health. (Pew Trusts)
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Ashida helps older adults prepare for emergencies

CPH associate professor Sato Ashida is working to help older Iowans--especially those with mobility or chronic health issues--prepare for emergency situations. (Iowa Magazine)
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UI biostatistician soars to world records

Not many people would feel at ease soaring 10,000 feet above the earth tethered to a balloon, but for pilot and College of Public Health alumna Kim Magee (15MS), the sky is practically a second home. (Iowa Magazine)
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Askelson comments on HPV vaccine

CPH assistant professor Natoshia Askelson notes that parents of teenagers in Iowa are less likely to have their children vaccinated to prevent HPV because of a lack of recommendations by health care providers. (Daily Iowan)
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Rural Iowans are less likely to receive guideline-recommended cancer care

A recent study led by CPH associate professor Mary Charlton found that 40 percent of rural Iowans diagnosed with breast, lung, and colorectal cancers were being treated in hospitals not accredited by the Commission on Cancer. (IPR)
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Study finds parents’ bike safety messages to kids aren’t hitting home

Parents' messages on bike safety may be confusing, conflicting, or just plain out of date, according to a study led by CPH faculty member Cara Hamann. (Safety+Health)
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Peek-Asa comments on gun violence prevention

Corinne Peek-Asa, CPH associate dean for research, notes that preventing gun violence requires a multi-pronged approach, including research and investment. (Daily Iowan)
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UI students unaware of health effects of vaping

A recent survey showed 26.8 percent of UI undergraduate students used an e-cigarette in the past 30 days. CPH researchers commented on the lack of regulation and definitive medical knowledge about vaping. (Daily Iowan)
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Students contribute to Mason City neighborhood study

CPH students took part in a research project that helped develop the "Healthy North End Neighborhood Plan" in Mason City. (Globe Gazette)
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Gibbs discusses crisis resources for farmers

Jenna Gibbs, center coordinator of the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health, recently discussed stressors Iowa farmers face and crisis resources. (KVFD Radio)
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Iowa partnership helps neurologists design stronger clinical trials

An Iowa–Michigan partnership called the Clinical Trials Methodology Course is an annual training program for junior neurology faculty and fellows from institutions across the country that teaches participants how to design clinical trials. (CCOM)
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Economic consequences of immigration raids are far reaching

CPH research scientist Nicole Novak was recently interviewed about the economic impact of immigration raids on rural communities. (Marketplace)
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O’Shaughnessy comments on health effects of particulate pollution

CPH professor Patrick O'Shaughnessy commented on a new study that estimates how air pollution affects global rates of heart and lung disease in at least 250 urban cities. (GW Hatchet)
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Survey looks at best practices for an age-friendly workplace

CPH researchers are conducting a survey in Colorado to identify best practices for recruiting and retaining age 50+ workers, as well as programs employers have in place to help employees prepare for retirement. (PR Newswire)
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OB unit closures present challenges in rural areas

Keith Mueller, director of the Rural Policy Research Institute, recently commented on the factors that have contributed to the closing of numerous obstetrics units in rural hospitals. (KCRG)
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Rural patients face challenges accessing high-quality cancer care

Research by CPH associate professor Mary Charlton shows almost 40 percent of rural Iowans who are diagnosed with certain cancers are being treated in hospitals that are not accredited by the Commission on Cancer. (The Brief)
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Study to focus on preventing falls through elimination of high-risk medications

Researchers from the Colleges of Pharmacy and Public Health have received a $3 million grant from the CDC to conduct a four-year study examining falls of elderly people. CPH associate professor Carri Casteel is co-principal investigator. (COP)
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Researchers and bike groups agree more rider education needed

Clinical assistant professor Cara Hamann is studying patterns in who gets charged and convicted in motorcycle/car crashes. (KWWL)
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Iowa HPV vaccination rates lag other teen vaccines

A recent report shows Iowa parents are less likely to have their teens receive the HPV vaccine compared to other vaccines. CPH assistant professor Natoshia Askelson is working with health providers to improve that rate. (Gazette)
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Iowa public meeting tackles water quality, farming, health

Concerns about water quality took center stage in Mt. Vernon, Iowa, June 19 when NIEHS and National Toxicology Program Director Linda Birnbaum and others spoke at a community meeting sponsored by the EHSRC. (NIEHS)
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Hamann investigates increasing number of motorcycle crashes

Clinical assistant professor Cara Hamann and colleagues are studying ways to prevent motorcycle crashes in Iowa. (Press-Citizen)
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UI research team uses chocolate to investigate what causes some people to overeat

The taste perceptions that influence which foods and how much we eat may be significantly different in obese people, according to a new study co-authored by CPH assistant professor Aaron Miller. (CCOM)
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Study shows Americans still don’t get enough exercise

A new study conducted by CPH assistant professor Wei Bao and colleagues found that Americans are not getting the message about exercising more and sitting less. (TIME)
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Field comments on residents’ exposure to radiation

CPH professor Bill Field commented on the potential health effects of radiation exposure in a New Orleans neighborhood. (Times-Picayune)
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Study finds waist size a forgotten factor in defining obesity

A new study led by CPH researchers finds that a subgroup of people who are considered to be normal weight as measured by body mass index could actually be at high risk for death because of their waist size. (Iowa Now)
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Grad student helps with community health survey

Ian Buchta, an MPH student in epidemiology, is interning with Johnson County Public Health this summer. His work includes helping to conduct a door-to-door survey on community health needs. (KCRG)
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Novak writes about the impact of immigration raids

Nicole Novak, an assistant research scientist at the UI College of Public Health, co-authored an opinion piece discussing the individual and community impacts of immigration raids. (CNN)
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Study links fried food to overall mortality

CPH researchers have linked the consumption of fried foods to overall mortality, which means death from any cause. The study used 20 years of health data from about 106,000 women who took part in the Women's Health Initiative. (The Pantagraph)
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Talking to teens can lead to safer driving

A new study by CPH researchers finds that the use of video monitoring technology combined with parents talking to their teens about safe driving motivates young drivers to be safer. (Iowa Now)
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I-CASH grants support ag safety efforts

Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH) has awarded Mitchell County Extension and Outreach two grants totaling $1,000 to fund community initiatives about farm safety and health. (Mitchell County Press News)
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Study looks at caregivers and gaps in workplace support

A study coauthored by CPH associate professor Brian Kaskie finds that workers who are unpaid caregivers of older relatives struggle with unmet workplace needs. (EurekAlert)
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Researchers examine motorcycle crashes in Iowa

Researcher Cara Hamaan with the UI Injury Prevention Research Center and colleagues at the Iowa DOT are studying motorcycle safety in Iowa. (WMT/WHO)
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Grants to youth groups promote agricultural safety and health

Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health in the UI College of Public Health has awarded grants to 10 agricultural youth groups around Iowa to help fund farm safety and health initiatives. (Oskaloosa Herald)
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Video: Diane Rohlman discusses agricultural safety course

Diane Rohlman, director of the UI's Agricultural Safety and Health Program, discusses how the ag safety course provides education on farm hazards. (Telegraph Herald)
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Students experience grain bin rescue simulation

Students enrolled in the UI's Agricultural Safety and Health: The Core Course recently took part in a grain bin rescue simulation. (KCRG)
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Petersen calls for enforceable guidelines to slow spread of Canine Brucellosis

A new study to be published in July by Christine Petersen, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, finds that Canine Brucellosisis is reemerging because of an increase in the number of large breeding operations, ease of movement across state and national boundaries, and little regulation of the breeding facilities or the animals that are bred there. Petersen suggests enforceable guidelines are needed soon to keep infected dogs from being moved between facilities and across borders, preventing the disease from spreading among both dogs and humans. (Newswise)
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Fethke comments on health effects of whole-body vibration

Repeated exposure to whole-body vibration impacts the spinal discs, and accumulated vibrations can add up--possibly triggering lower back pain and other musculoskeletal disorders. "Any sort of equipment where an operator is in a seated position has the potential to impart mechanical vibration that could be problematic," said Nathan Fethke, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health. (Safey+Health)
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Rohlman discusses injury prevention for teen workers

According to NIOSH, a teen is injured in the workplace every five minutes in the United States. "Not having been in the workforce, they don't recognize hazards," said Diane Rohlman, associate professor and director of the Healthier Workforce Center of the Midwest at the University of Iowa. "If somebody tells them to do something, they're just going to do it. That's the model they've been following." (Safety+Health)
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Healthy LifeStars gets kids moving to reduce childhood obesity

More than 100 Iowa City-area students recently participated in Healthy LifeStars, an initiative from the University of Iowa College of Public Health that fights childhood obesity by encouraging students to be more active and eat more nutritious food. The college has rolled out several initiatives in recent years designed to reduce the number of obese children in Iowa. (Iowa Now)
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UI colleges adapting to new educational demands

Colleges at the University of Iowa are adapting programming and curriculum to meet the demands of students and potential employers. The College of Public Health established an undergraduate program in 2016 to meet the growing demand for not just providers, but scientists and researchers, inspectors, hospital administrators, project managers, wellness counselors, data analytics experts, and other public health professionals. (Iowa Now)
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Petersen’s paper on canine brucellosis reemergence cited

A dog breeding center in Iowa has been the originating point for several cases of canine brucellosis. CPH associate professor Christine Petersen recently co-authored a paper about the reemergence of the disease, noting that all dogs need to be screened and tested for the infection before they are imported or cleared for interstate travel. (News-Medical.Net)
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Novak writes op-ed about community impact of immigration raids

Nicole Novak, a researcher in the College of Public Health, writes about the impact of immigration raids on families and communities. She notes, "Time and again, local residents liken these raids to natural disasters striking their towns. In the words of one Mt. Pleasant resident, the impact of the immigration raid was like 'a tornado coming down and taking out 30 houses on the edge of town.'" (Des Moines Register)
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GPCAH works to break stigma of mental illness

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health (GPCAH) is working to break the stigma around mental illness in rural communities. "Our main goal is to try to bring light to on-farm stresses that farmers may face, to let everyone know that many face similar financial and personal hardships, to let everyone know they are not alone," said GPCAH director Renee Anthony. (Daily Iowan)
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Peek-Asa comments on rural suicide prevention

A series of two articles looks at efforts to prevent suicide and remove the stigma around seeking mental health care. "Part of it is making sure that the services are there and accessible and people can pay for them," said Corrine Peek-Asa, a professor in the University of Iowa's College of Public Health who's researched rural suicide. "But we also have to address the stigma to seeking that help." (The Gazette)
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Student-run podcast bridges gap between researchers, community

Several College of Public Health students are going a step beyond research and the classroom, diving headfirst into what it's like to communicate scientific issues that affect the lives of everyday people. The podcast, "From the Front Row: Students Voices in Public Health," aims to bridge the divide between researchers and the public to increase information and awareness. (Daily Iowan)
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Community-based research in Newton, Iowa, promotes nutritional health

UI students and faculty of the College of Public Health are expanding their knowledge of nutrition to Newton, Iowa, through a community health partnership that promotes healthy lifestyles. Involving students from the UI and Grinnell College, the objective of the course is speak with the Newton community and develop health objectives that will benefit the city as a whole, said Linda Snetselaar, CPH professor of epidemiology and UI associate provost for outreach and engagement. (Daily Iowan)
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CPH professor finds interactive ways to teach about diseases

CPH associate professor Matt Nonnenmann uses social media, bubble machines, and other surprises to make his class on diseases more interactive and appealing to students. "The core of the class is based on infectious-disease transmission," Nonnenmann said. "How that disease is transmitted, how you can assess transmission, and how you can protect yourself is covered in the class. We do activities in classes that involve how these things work." (Daily Iowan)
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Analysis finds many women of child-bearing age continue to smoke electronic cigarettes

A new study from the University of Iowa published by JAMA Pediatrics finds that many women of childbearing age use electronic cigarettes, particularly among those who smoke conventional cigarettes. The study, led by Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, found that while use of conventional cigarettes was lower among pregnant women than non-pregnant women, the use of electronic cigarettes was almost identical between pregnant and non-pregnant women. (Multiple sources)
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Skipping breakfast associated with higher risk of cardiovascular death

A new study led by Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, found that people who never ate breakfast had an 87 percent higher risk of death caused by cardiovascular disease than people who ate breakfast every day. Published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, it supports the benefits of eating a daily breakfast in promoting heart health. (Multiple sources)
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College of Public Health helps Ottumwa residents get active

Active Ottumwa, a partnership between the city of Ottumwa and the Prevention Research Center (PRC) in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, offers dozens of fitness programs designed to get more Ottumwans moving. "[Ottumwa is] a community where there are health needs, and a proactive and engaged leadership that was committed to working with us to fill those needs," says Edith Parker, dean of the College of Public Health and PRC director. (Iowa Now)
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Mueller comments on rural pharmacy closings

More than 600 communities in rural America have lost access to local pharmacies since 2003. "Losing the pharmacy also means losing the services of a pharmacist," said Keith Mueller, head of the Department of Health Management and Policy at the University of Iowa. Pharmacies are a cornerstone of the health care infrastructure in small, rural towns, Mueller said. (Wyoming Public Media)
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Regents consider UI’s request for M.S. degree termination

The state Board of Regents heard the University of Iowa's request for approval to terminate the master of science in community and behavioral health in the Graduate College on April 18. There have been no admissions to the program since 2015. (Daily Iowan)
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Janssen comments on farmers in crisis

A story about the downturn in the farm economy notes that Iowa's crisis hotlines are getting more calls. Farmers are at higher risk of suicide, given economic volatility, isolation, feeling a lack of control, and access to firearms, among other factors, says Brandi Janssen, executive director of Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health at the University of Iowa. (Des Moines Register)
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UI, Congolese community create partnership to improve health outcomes

The UI is partnering with the local Congolese community to identify cultural differences in health care and educate both immigrants and medical providers on how to facilitate more appropriate prenatal and pregnancy care. "I've been really impressed with both the commitment from our providers here at the UI and the commitment, dedication, and leadership from the community," said Will Story, CPH assistant professor. (Daily Iowan)
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Goraleski, Mahachi discuss emerging infectious diseases

Karen Goraleski, CEO of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene and recent CPH guest lecturer, along with CPH epidemiology student Kurayi Mahachi, recently discussed the movement and spread of infectious diseases on a podcast produced by the Carver College of Medicine. (The Short Coat)
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CPH collaborating with Newton Community Health Partnership

The Newton Community Health Partnership is a collaboration of local stakeholders working with teams from the University of Iowa and Grinnell College to promote physical activity and healthy eating habits. Linda Snetselaar, UI associate provost of outreach and engagement and CPH professor of epidemiology, is one of the project investigators. She said Newton has been "so responsive" to the changes and in developing projects for its community. (Multiple sources)
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Core course focuses on agricultural safety and health

A core course focused on agricultural safety and health is being offered this June to increase both the awareness of the hazards associated with farming as well as ways that professions can help reduce these hazards. "Our long-term goal really is to reduce injury and illness," said Diane Rohlman, the course training director and CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health. (Daily Iowan)
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Study finds more than 50% of dual-eligibles end up in low-rated SNFs

Older adults who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid are more likely to wind up in low-quality skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), and their education and distance from quality skilled nursing facilities are key reasons why. "More interactions among nursing home leaders from both high-quality and low-quality facilities can help identify ways to improve low-quality facilities in poorer neighborhoods," says lead author Hari Sharma, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy. (McKnights)
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Healthy LifeStars partners with UI to promote children’s health

Healthy LifeStars, a program devoted to motivating children to live healthy lives, recently began its outreach in Iowa. "We're using the wonderful resources at the University of Iowa -- like our students -- to implement the program," said Vickie Miene, interim director of the Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy. "UI students are trained to teach the Healthy LifeStars program to kids in our after-school and elementary-school areas in Iowa City." (Daily Iowan)
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College of Public Health hosts book club, invites authors to UI

The University of Iowa College of Public Health's annual book club allows students, staff, and faculty to collaboratively read one nonfiction book related to a current public health issue. This year, Mona Hanna-Attisha's "What the Eyes Don't See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City" was chosen, a book about the Flint water crisis. (Daily Iowan)
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Story cites UI research on suicides among farmers

A story about the high rate of suicide among farmers cites research co-authored by CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa and colleagues. The research suggested possible causes for farmers’ high suicide rate, including social isolation and loneliness, access to guns, financial stress, chronic pain or illness, and ruinously unpredictable weather. (Reader’s Digest)
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College of Public Health dean leads collaborative workshop between U.S., India

The UI College of Public Health recently partnered with the organization Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA) to host a workshop in New Delhi, India, on using participatory research to study and understand the health impacts of pesticides, air pollution, natural disasters, and other issues. CPH Dean Edith Parker and assistant research scientist Nicole Novak were at the center of its organization and presentation. (Daily Iowan)
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Residents seek answers about health risks near Iowa sand mines

In 2015, investigators from the UI Department of Occupational and Environmental Health conducted research to determine the community risk of silica exposure in southwest Wisconsin. The researchers found all the silica samples to be well below the value of concern, which is 3 micrograms per cubic meter. However, environmental events such as high winds can concentrate dust, said Patrick O’Shaughnessy, co-author of the study. (Des Moines Register)
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Activist, pediatrician visits the UI to discuss the Flint water crisis

Mona Hanna-Attisha, a scientist and pediatrician, spoke at the UI College of Public Health Monday night about her book "What the Eyes Don't See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City." The book is not only a firsthand account of the injustices in Flint, but is also a memoir of her story as an Iraqi-American immigrant who realized her own American dream, Hanna-Attisha said. (Daily Iowan)
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Study explores farm machinery vibration, back pain link

A University of Iowa study of farm machinery found that the machine operators experienced whole-body vibration at levels that reached the European Union’s "action level" for exposure limit within two hours of operation on nearly 30 percent of the equipment tested. (Safety+Health)
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Undergraduate-to-graduate programs growing at the UI

As of fall 2018, there are over 100 students enrolled in 43 undergraduate-to-graduate (U2G ) programs on campus, and that number is expected to grow. UI third-year student Emily Houston is part of the first wave of U2Gs in the UI College of Public Health. "A great thing about the program here is they do a lot of professional development and you get to connect with professionals in the field. The program itself felt like a great starting point to network," Houston said. (Daily Iowan)
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UI research advances understanding of how children learn words

With $2.1 million in funding from the National Institutes of Health, a team of UI researchers is partnering with schools in Cedar Rapids and Iowa City to enroll hundreds of elementary-age children in a study that uses novel eye-tracking technology to learn how children identify and form vocabulary. Jacob Oleson, CPH professor of biostatistics, is a co-investigator on the project. (Iowa Now)
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Mona Hanna-Attisha shares lessons from Flint

Mona Hanna-Attish -- a pediatrician and researcher who revealed the Flint water crisis -- recently spoke to Iowa Magazine ahead of her March 25 visit to Iowa City, where she'll hold a public lecture at the UI College of Public Health and meet with groups of students and faculty. Get a sneak peak of her work and why she says "there are Flints everywhere." (Iowa Magazine)
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Researchers examine link between minimum wage, long-term health

A new study led by George Wehby, CPH professor of health management and policy, will examine whether children's health can be positively affected by an increase in their parents' minimum wage. "The study will link state-level data on the minimum wage to child-level data on development and health outcomes to examine how changes in minimum wage across states and over time have impacted a range of children’s health outcomes," Wehby said. (Multiple sources)
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Faust uses tractor driving simulator to improve farm safety

CPH doctoral student Kayla Faust has designed a tractor driving simulator to help study what aspects contribute to or help prevent crashes. (KCRG)
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2019 Cancer in Iowa report highlights HPV-related cancers

While the overall number of new cases for most types of cancer in Iowa remains mostly unchanged, the number of cancers related to the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is on the rise. According to the 2019 Cancer in Iowa report issued March 5 by the State Health Registry of Iowa, women are more likely than men to be diagnosed with HPV cancers. (Multiple sources)
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Article cites Peek-Asa’s study on intimate partner violence

An article examining services for victims of domestic violence in Iowa cites a 2011 study led by CPH professor Corinne Peek-Asa. "Access to health, prevention, and protection services in the United States is disparate based on population density: rural women have less access than urban women to domestic violence shelters, physical and mental health professionals, law enforcement, and judicial personnel," Peek-Asa wrote. (The Gazette)
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Study finds women seek help for alcoholism in different ways than men

A new study finds that women are less likely than men to get help for a drinking problem and are more likely to believe the problem will get better on its own. "We should ask ourselves, 'How can we tailor services for women? How can we improve problem recognition? What messages will encourage women who have drinking problems to get help?'" says Paul Gilbert, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health and the study's lead author. (Iowa Now)
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Researchers studying health effects of indoor cooking fires

Emma Stapleton, a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, spent a week in Tamil Nadu, India, preparing to research the effects of indoor biomass fires on the lungs of women. She is part of a team working to establish a scientific correlation between indoor cooking fires and the health problems seen in Indian citizens. (UI Internal Medicine)
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Field comments on uranium ore found at Grand Canyon museum building

For nearly 20 years, a trio of 5-gallon paint buckets sat near the taxidermy exhibit at Grand Canyon National Park's museum collections building. But those buckets weren't holding paint -- they were loaded with uranium ore, a naturally occurring rock rich in uranium that gives off potentially dangerous radiation. "If the time spent near the ore was short, there is likely little cause for concern," says Bill Field, UI professor of occupational and environmental health. (Live Science)
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CPH student, alum create app to help with public speaking

CPH alumnus Nico Aguilar and current CPH student Anthony Pham have created an app called 'Speeko' to help people improve their public speaking skills. "We believe that communication is not just a talent, it's a skill," said Aguilar. "It's something that you can improve, and that improving this can change your life." (Multiple sources)
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Escoto developing e-cigarette health campaign

Alejandra Escoto, a graduate student in the College of Public Health, is working with Student Health to develop a toolkit with methods to prevent e-cigarette use and assist current users quit smoking. To make sure the campaign is successful with students, Student Health is conducting focus groups for vape users and non-users, Escoto said. (Daily Iowan)
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UI research finds no health hazards from wind turbines

CPH professors Peter Thorne and David Osterberg, in collaboration with the Iowa Environmental Council, have written a paper concluding that there is no evidence that the sound produced by wind turbines poses a health risk to neighboring residents. "With the rapid expansion of wind energy, some neighbors to wind turbines have claimed the sound has affected their health. While, to some, the sound might be annoying, research studies have established no adverse health effects," says Thorne, professor and head of the UI's Department of Occupational and Environmental Health. (Multiple sources)
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UI study finds parents unsure how to handle cyberbullying

A series of focus groups comprised of parents of middle and high school students in the Midwest is among the first efforts by researchers to look at parental roles in cyberbullying. "This brings a new dimension to our understanding of the parent component of cyberbullying and will help us develop stronger intervention approaches to engage parents and schools," says Corinne Peek-Asa, director of the Injury Prevention Research Center in the UI College of Public Health, which funded the research. (Iowa Now)
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Gibbs discusses pesticide drift map

Jenna Gibbs, center coordinator for the UI Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health, helped research and map out all the cases of pesticide drift reported to the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship from 2010 to 2015. The map tool is available online. "Just by looking at the individual pieces on the map and seeing what the target crop was can really show us a lot of lessons for how to prevent this from happening again in the future," Gibbs says. (WHO)
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Active Ottumwa part of man’s recovery after injury

An Ottumwa man is a walking miracle after being struck by an SUV last fall while riding his bike. Remi Panlaqui, 74, credits his rapid recovery to a lifetime filled with exercise, including weekly walks with Active Ottumwa at the local mall. (KTVO)
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Field comments on radon exposure and cancer

According to new analysis, radon exposure itself may be responsible for 14–17 percent of lung cancer cases and 3 percent of all cancer mortality in the 66 countries for which national data on radon exposure are available. "In the United States, I consider radon exposure the leading environmental cause of cancer mortality," says longtime radon researcher and University of Iowa professor Bill Field. (Environmental Health Perspectives)
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Ashida developing program to keep most vulnerable safe

CPH associate professor Sato Ashida is developing a new tool called PrepWise to keep the elderly and people with disabilities safe during a disaster or other mass emergency. "Some of those things that we find very easy might not be easy for older adults or people who experience disabilities, so we want to make sure people who may need extra help during and after disasters or natural situations like this are prepared before it actually occurs," she says. (KGAN)
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Are wind turbines harming health? A new paper says ‘no’

A paper released Thursday from three Iowa groups looked at research around the public health impact of wind turbines and found little evidence they're harming neighbors. Studies found sound from wind turbines may be annoying, but they "have established no adverse health effects,” said CPH professor Peter Thorne. (Multiple sources)
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CHEEC testing water quality of private wells in NE Iowa

The UI Center for Health Effects of Environmental Contamination (CHEEC) is conducting a study of private wells in northeast Iowa. Bill Field, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, said 50 private wells are being tested to check for possible contamination from insecticides due to chemical runoff from farms. (Telegraph Herald)
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Field comments on radon exposure from alternative treatments

People from all over the world are traveling to Montana for a potentially dangerous alternative treatment. They sit in 'radon health mines'--which are decommissioned gold and uranium mines--breathing in air tainted with radon. "I wouldn't want to be in a room where there are 25 to 35 nanocuries per litre of radon," notes CPH professor and radon expert Bill Field. (Science Alert)
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Ashida helps area seniors prepare for disaster with PrepWise

CPH associate professor Sato Ashida is developing a project called PrepWise that helps seniors plan for a disaster. Research indicates that the elderly are most at risk in the event of a natural disaster, compounded by mobility issues, chronic health conditions, and other factors limiting access to emergency services. (The Gazette)
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UI students develop app to improve public speaking

CPH alumnus Nico Aguilar and current CPH student Anthony Pham are co-founders of Speeko, a voice analytics company that uses artificial intelligence to help people avoid embarrassing public speaking experiences by measuring and improving their verbal communication skills. As a team, the two have pitched their way to start-up success at a number of university and international entrepreneurial competitions. (Iowa Now)
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Grants will help native communities combat alcohol, drug addictions

A series of HHS grants totaling $9.5 million over five years will focus on holistic training and services aimed at aiding Native American tribes in fighting alcohol and opioid abuse and promoting mental health. Anne Helene Skinstad, clinical professor of community and behavioral health and the grant recipient, serves as the director of the Addiction Technology Transfer Center projects based in the UI College of Public Health. (Daily Iowan)
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Grants will help develop strategies to combat addiction by native populations

Anne Helene Skinstad, clinical professor of community and behavioral health in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, has recently been awarded grants totaling $9.5 million over the next five years to help reduce drug and alcohol addiction among American Indian and Alaska Native populations. (Iowa Now)
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Bao discusses Iowa’s obesity ranking

Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, recently discussed a new CDC report identifying Iowa as the fourth most obese state in the country. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Fort Dodge, Cerro Gordo County organizations receive BLN Community Grants

The UI College of Public Health's Business Leadership Network (BLN) has awarded Community Grants to the Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health as well as The Fort Dodge Community Foundation and United Way. The funds will be used to provide new bedding for children and to install sensory pathways within five elementary schools. (Multiple Sources)
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BLN grant will improve overnight shelter in Muscatine

The Muscatine Center for Social Action (MCSA) is one of seven organizations statewide that received a UI College of Public Health Business Leadership Network (BLN) grant, announced last week week. "We are going to use this grant to update our single men's overnight shelter," said Scott Dahlke, executive director of MCSA. (Muscatine Journal)
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Editorial: UI elder abuse report prompts awareness of issue

A recent University of Iowa study about elder abuse focused on 1,000 square miles in the east central part of this state. It found Iowans have little awareness about the mistreatment of older people, and there are relatively few prosecutions when abuse occurs. (Des Moines Register)
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Quad City public health projects receive grants

Two Quad-City area organizations are among the recipients of the 2019 Community Grant Program from the University of Iowa College of Public Health and its Business Leadership Network. The local recipients are: Living Proof Exhibit, Davenport, and Muscatine Center for Social Action. (Quad-City Times)
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New report examines elder abuse in Iowa

A new University of Iowa study finds that older Iowans who experience some form of abuse have little chance of experiencing any resolution. While most older Iowans are doing well, a large and growing number of Iowans over the age of 65 have become vulnerable, says researcher Brian Kaskie, associate professor of health management and policy at the University of Iowa College of Public Health.
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UI study finds existing vaccine can treat dogs infected with leishmaniasis

A study by University of Iowa researchers finds that a vaccine used to prevent dogs from contracting the deadly, parasitic disease canine leishmaniasis also can be used to treat currently infected dogs, providing a new avenue of treatment for millions of infected dogs globally. The study provided the first clinical trial of the vaccine LeishTec in infected dogs. (Multiple sources)
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Study looks at prevalence, treatment patterns of autism spectrum disorder

A new study from researchers at the University of Iowa shows that while autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is relatively prevalent among U.S. children aged 3-17 years, a large number of them don’t receive any type of treatment. The researchers looked at data from the 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health and found that 2.8 percent of the 43,032 children in the survey had been diagnosed with ASD and 2.5 percent currently had ASD. Among the children with current ASD, 29.5 percent never received either behavioral or medication treatments. (Multiple sources)
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UI report on elder abuse in Iowa highlighted in editorial

A recent editorial draws attention to a new report on elder abuse compiled by University of Iowa researchers for the U.S. Department of Justice. The report notes that prosecution of elder abuse is a relatively rare occurrence. CPH associate professor Brian Kaskie is a co-author of the report. (Des Moines Register)
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Study finds rural tele-ERs save money, improve physician recruitment

A new study from the University of Iowa finds rural hospitals that use telemedicine to back up their emergency room health care providers not only save money but also find it easier to recruit new physicians. Marcia Ward, study author and professor of health management and policy in the UI College of Public Health, says the results suggest that expanded use of tele-emergency services could play a key role in helping small, rural critical access hospitals maintain their emergency rooms. (Multiple sources)
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Mueller discusses rural health care and the economy

Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis, recently participated in a conversation centered on the rural economy and its dependency on health care workers, how critical health care delivery is to the rural economy, some of the headwinds faced by changing payment systems, and more. (Insight on Business)
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Bao comments on rise of ADHD diagnoses in U.S.

A recent study finds attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnoses in children between the ages of 4 and 17 increased from 6.1 percent in 1997-1998 to 10.2 percent in 2015-2016. "This is a dramatic change," explains study researcher Wei Bao, an assistant professor in the College of Public Health at the University of Iowa. "ADHD was already a common condition in children in the past, and it is becoming even more common. Now 1 in 10 children are affected. This is really high." (WebMD)
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Whole-body vibration contributes to ag workers’ back pain

Back pain is often tied to agriculture work. Pushing, pulling, and lifting are the oft-cited culprits, but silently hiding behind these usual suspects may be the chief instigator: vibration. A recently released study from the University of Iowa examines levels of whole-body vibration (WBV) absorbed during operation of agriculture vehicles. The innovative analysis suggests that over the course of lifetime exposure, WBV may be devastating for particular growers. (Ag Web)
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Colleges collaborate on business education for pharmacy students

The UI College of Pharmacy has partnered with the Office of Health Care Leadership Education on a program that teaches pharmacy students business skills. A collaboration among the Tippie College of Business, the Carver College of Medicine, and the College of Public Health provides business-leadership education for the College of Pharmacy in the form of six courses taken over a period of three semesters. (Daily Iowan)
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UI research improves school lunches for Iowa K–12 students

The Healthy Schools-Healthy Students program works with school districts to encourage students to eat more nutritious lunches more often. The program in Iowa is evaluated by the UI College of Public Health. While the USDA initiative is national, CPH assistant professor Natoshia Askelson says the UI focuses on rural school districts that have unique challenges due to their often remote locations. "Research has shown that if you get kids eating spinach and broccoli and other nutritious foods when they're young, they're more likely to eat them for life,” says Askelson. (Multiple sources)
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Survey gathers Iowa LGBTQ health data

In an effort among the first of its kind in the state, researchers have taken steps to understand the health needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Iowans. The University of Iowa College of Public Health partnered with the Iowa Cancer Consortium, statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization One Iowa, and Des Moines University to produce the LGBTQ Health in Iowa report, a survey of 567 LGBTQ Iowans on their health care and health care access. (Multiple sources)
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Janz comments on new physical activity guidelines

The federal government has just updated recommendations for physical activity for the first time in 10 years. Based on a review of several years of new research, the key takeaway of the new guidelines is: Get moving, America! "Everything adds up and contributes to reduced risk for diseases and day-to-day feeling better," says UI professor Kathleen Janz, who served on the committee reviewing the science of physical activity. Janz has a secondary appointment in the Department of Epidemiology and is an investigator with the UI Prevention Research Center. (NPR)
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USPSTF issues recommendation on screening for unhealthy alcohol use

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that primary care clinicians screen all adults for unhealthy alcohol use. However, there "isn't enough evidence to know if screening and providing counseling to adolescents in primary care settings helps address alcohol use," adds task force chair Sue Curry, UI distinguished professor of health management and policy, noting that more research is needed. (USPSTF Bulletin)
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Study examines how water access and sanitation affect birth outcomes

Spending more time per day fetching water increased Indian women's risk of delivering a low birth weight baby, according to a study by CPH researchers. The study examines the complex relationships between water and sanitation access and social conditions on birth outcomes among women in India. (Multiple sources)
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A century later, UI experts recall deadly flu outbreak, prepare for new flu season

In 1918, an especially virulent flu virus caused an estimated 20 million deaths worldwide. In Iowa, the virus forced quarantines, event cancellations, and a stern public health warning from the UI's then-president. CPH professors Michael Pentella and Christine Petersen comment on the epidemic and what the UI is doing in 2018 to track, study, and prevent influenza. (Iowa Now)
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Teaching business to future pharmacists

The need is greater than ever for pharmacists to possess basic business skills. That's why the UI College of Pharmacy has partnered with the UI's Office of Healthcare Leadership Education to offer a series of courses in business and leadership to pharmacy students, including some courses taught by CPH faculty. (Iowa Now)
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‘US News & World Report’ ranks UI among world’s best research universities

The University of Iowa is the 159th best research university in the world, according to U.S. News & World Report's latest ranking of top global universities. The magazine ranked 1,250 institutions from 75 countries including the United States based on 13 indicators that measure their academic research performance and their global and regional reputations. Iowa's score puts the university among the top 15 percent of these leading global institutions.The UI is ranked 144th in social sciences and public health. (Iowa Now)
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MHIRT students study minority populations in Romania

Over the summer, 13 students spent 10 weeks in Romania working with Romanian researchers and the local Roma population. They traveled through the Minority Health and Health Disparities International Training (MHIRT) Program, a research training program created by the UI to help foster careers in health for minority students. (Daily Iowan)
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NIH awards UI team $2 million grant

A team from the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine and the College of Public Health won a three-year, $2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health for a project to deliver gene editing tools to hard-to-reach cells in the airway. The grant was one of the first to be funded by NIH's new Somatic Cell Genome Editing program. (Daily Iowan)
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Study examines US diabetes prevalence

An estimated 8.5% of the U.S. adult population was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and 0.5% was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2016 and 2017, according to a study published in BMJ. "With the continuing improvement in treatment of type 1 diabetes, more children with this form of diabetes are expected to survive to adulthood," Linda Snetselaar of the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Iowa College of Public Health, and colleagues wrote. (Healio)
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Machine vibrations may contribute to farmers’ back pain

A new study from the University of Iowa has found that vibrations from farm machinery may lead to increasing back pain for farmers and other agricultural workers. "We want it to not be just part of the job. We want (back pain) to be something farmers are thinking about early in their careers so they do what they can to protect themselves," said Nathan Fethke, lead investigator on the study and CPH associate professor. (The Gazette)
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IPRC presents data at opioid conference in Waterloo

Rep. Rod Blum recently held a conference with state Rep. Sandy Salmon and Chris Hoffman, executive director of Pathways Behavioral Services, to discuss opioid addiction and its effect on Iowa. According to a presentation from Ann Saba from the University of Iowa's Injury Prevention Research Center, opioid prescriptions are higher in rural counties than in urban ones. (Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier)
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Farmers share stories to increase safety

The Telling the Story Project gathers farmers' stories of injuries and close calls to start conversations about agricultural safety. "It gets people talking comfortably about safety. They stop being afraid to talk about something, even if it's a mistake that they may have made, an error in judgment or a lack of awareness," says Stephanie Leonard, an occupational safety manager with the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health. (U.S.News)
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Agricultural workers face hazards on the job

A recent study from the UI College of Public of Health found that people who spend long hours operating agricultural vehicles appear more susceptible to muscular or back pain due to vibration. Farmers face many other hazards, including working with large machinery, livestock, and confined spaces. "In Iowa, agriculture tends to be responsible for higher rates of fatal injuries than any other occupation in the state," says Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health. (Daily Iowan)
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Mueller discusses rural pharmacy closings

U.S. rural pharmacies are dwindling, according to statistics from the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis. The sharpest drop in independently owned rural pharmacies happened between 2007 and 2009, according to the RUPRI brief. However, a slower decline continues into 2018. "The biggest spike in rural pharmacy closures occurred a few years ago, after the full implementation of Medicare Part D," says Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center. (U.S. News)
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Lynch, Robertson, and Thorne honored with university awards

Each year, University of Iowa faculty and staff members are honored for their valuable contributions to the university's core mission of teaching, service, and research. Award recipients from the College of Public Health in 2018 were Charles Lynch (Michael J. Brody Award for Faculty Excellence in Service), Gayle Robertson (David J. Skorton Award for Staff Excellence in Service), and Peter Thorne (Board of Regents Award for Faculty Excellence).
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Iowa Climate Statement: Prepare for more heat waves, intense rainfall

The "Iowa Climate Statement 2018: Designing Buildings and Communities for Iowa's Future Climate," released Oct. 11 describes the urgent need to fortify buildings in Iowa to withstand a hotter, more humid climate, with more frequent and extreme storms and dry spells. The statement was signed by a record 201 science faculty and researchers from 37 Iowa colleges and universities, including the UI College of Public Health. (Iowa Environmental Focus)
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CPH receives award renewal to continue birth defect research

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has renewed a $4.3 million grant to the University of Iowa College of Public Health for a project to identify factors in early pregnancy that may increase the risk of major structural birth defects. Paul Romitti, CPH professor of epidemiology, is the principal investigator on the award. (Iowa Now)
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Active Ottumwa kicks off Healthiest State Month

Walkers with Active Ottumwa hit the trail Wednesday for the Healthiest State Annual Walk. The walk was part of the Healthiest State Initiative, which encourages Iowans to increase their physical activity by 30 minutes a day. Though local activities are part of a statewide initiative to get people to move more, community leaders run the activities, said Becky Bucklin, research manager with the Prevention Research Center at the University of Iowa. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Parker comments on NIEHS Worker Training Program proposal

The National Advisory Environmental Health Sciences Council met Sept. 11-12, during which a proposal to upgrade the NIEHS Worker Training Program was presented. "I was really impressed with its ability to adapt to changing topics, as well as changing populations and changing situations," said council member Edith Parker, dean of the University of Iowa College of Public Health. (Environmental Factor)
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New study hoping to inspire healthier equipment for farmers

A new UI study is determining how much vibration a given farm machine transfers to the driver's body while working. According to research, 9 out of 10 farmers experience back pain during their careers often linked to extended amounts of time spent on the seats of machines. "Whatever we can do to design these problems out before they become potentially disabling for the farmer, that's what we want to do," says Nathan Fethke, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health. (KGAN)
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Research shows quality of life is just as important as jobs in developing rural areas

Today, only about a third of Iowans are rural residents, and a frequent discussion among policy makers is how to revive the areas where they live and create sustainable communities. Those discussions often focus on bringing new employers to town. But researchers affiliated with the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) say that while jobs are important, the effort to increase wealth in rural communities has to go beyond big employers and new jobs. (Iowa Now)
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Editorial: Producers’ firsthand accounts offer good information about farm safety

Farming isn't just hard work. It also can be dangerous work. That's not news to America's agricultural producers. But a new website, "Telling the Story," offers worthwhile farm safety information and links. The site, Tellingthestoryproject.org, features firsthand accounts by farmers who have been injured on the job. (Omaha World-Herald)
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CPH joins study to help reduce falls among elderly Iowans

The UI College of Public Health and the Mercy Accountable Care Organization (ACO) are part of the nationwide STRIDE study, a five-year research project that seeks to reduce fall-related injuries among older adults. "Every year, about 30 percent of adults over age 65 suffer an injury from a fall, and about 30 percent of those result in injuries severe enough to lead to declines in health and loss of confidence," says Robert Wallace, CPH professor of epidemiology, who is leading the study. (Iowa Now)
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Journalist Amy Maxmen discusses harnessing data in a global health crisis

Pulitzer Center grantee journalist Amy Maxmen visited the University of Iowa College of Public Health on Sept. 19 to discuss the impact of technology and how aid organizations harness data in a global health crisis. Maxmen's visit is part of the Pulitzer Center Campus Consortium partnership with the UI College of Public Health and UI School of Journalism and Mass Communication. (Pulitzer Center)
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UI study reveals the current rates of diagnosed type 1 and type 2 diabetes in American adults

A new study from the University of Iowa finds that type 2 diabetes remains overwhelmingly the most common type of diabetes diagnosed in American adults who have the disease. Study lead author Wei Bao, assistant professor of epidemiology in the College of Public Health, says the results are important because it allows health care professionals and policy makers to better allocate resources to treat each type of the disease. The study was published this month in the British Medical Journal. (Multiple sources)
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Telling the Story Project shares farm safety messages

The Telling the Story Project shares the stories of farmers, agricultural workers, and family and community members who've been impacted by injuries, fatalities, or close calls. "Talking about farm safety makes it normal, and part of farm management, just like the markets or weather or policies are discussed," says Stephanie Leonard, who helped develop the project. "This is just as important, and actually more, when you’re the person who stands to lose time at work from an injury or your life, even." (Multiple sources)
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Zhu research shows care teams perform well when members accurately know each other’s expertise

Interdisciplinary care teams (ICTs) are increasingly used to care for very complex individuals, such as those with significant mental health and behavioral challenges. A recent joint study by researchers at the University of Iowa and the University of Minnesota revealed some teamwork factors in ICTs producing high-quality care. The study was co-authored by Xi Zhu, UI associate professor of health management and policy, and Douglas Wholey, professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. (University of Minnesota)
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Op-ed: Faith community can help farmers through tough times

Jenna Gibbs, coordinator of the UI Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health, co-authored an editorial about the stressors that farmers face and where they turn for help during tough times. A survey found that many rely on their spiritual community for support. (Des Moines Register)
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Telling the Story Project helps protect farmers

Brian Egel, who farms near Nichols, Iowa, has suffered numerous injuries working on the farm. To help tell other farmers to pay attention to what they do, Egel shared his story with the Telling the Story Project, a farm safety initiative developed in part by the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health located in the UI College of Public Health. (Iowa Now)
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New multiple sclerosis drug slows brain shrinkage, study shows

A new drug has been shown to slow brain shrinkage in multiple sclerosis patients, according to a new preliminary trial conducted in part with the University of Iowa. The UI's Clinical Trials Statistical Data Management Center served as the data coordinating center for the study. (The Gazette)
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UI analysis finds significant increase in number of US children diagnosed with ADHD over 20 years

The number of children in the United States diagnosed with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) increased from 6.1 percent to 10.2 percent from 1997 to 2016, according to an analysis from the University of Iowa published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Network Open. This upward trend cut across all demographic subgroups, says Wei Bao, assistant professor of epidemiology in the UI College of Public Health and study co-author. (Iowa Now)
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Independent pharmacies shutting down, people left with few options

Research conducted by the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis at the University of Iowa suggests more than 16 percent of independent pharmacies shut down permanently between March 2003 and March 2018 in the U.S. Study co-author Fred Ullrich said people living in rural areas can still get their pharmaceuticals on the internet; however, other services cannot be found. "So, you don't get things like blood-glucose monitoring, immunization, [and] counseling," he said. (Daily Iowan)
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Study finds drug slows brain shrinkage in people with MS

A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that the drug ibudilast slows down brain shrinkage in people with multiple sclerosis (MS). Clinical trial results showed that ibudilast slowed the rate of brain atrophy by 48 percent among 255 participants with progressive MS when compared with an inactive placebo. The Clinical Trials and Statistical Data Management Center (CTSDMC) based at the University of Iowa College of Public Health served as the data coordinating center for this study.
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Independently owned pharmacies face tough times

Recent UI graduate Sarah Sorensen is the third generation to work at her family's pharmacy in Sioux City. Running an independent, family-owned pharmacy in these times is challenging. Over the last 16 years, 1,231 independently owned rural pharmacies in the United States have closed, according to the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis based in the UI College of Public Health. (Sioux City Journal)
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Mueller comments on pharmacy closings in rural areas

More than 16 percent of the independently owned rural pharmacies in the United States shut down between March 2003 and March 2018, according to a policy brief published last month by the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis at the University of Iowa. RUPRI Center Director Keith Mueller said the shift in how pharmacies were paid under the program that covers prescription drugs for seniors caused a "market disruption." (Washington Post)
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Lack of portable insurance adds health care burden to migrant workers

CPH Professor Charles Lynch and alumna Ashlee Johannes (16MS) are quoted in an article about migrant farm workers' lack of portable insurance. Migrant workers often under-report their illnesses and injuries, partially because of limited or no access to health insurance, said Johannes. (Des Moines Register)
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Gibbs comments on pesticide drift

An article about the health concerns of wind-blown pesticides includes comments from Jenna Gibbs, coordinator of the UI Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health. The University of Iowa is a leader in researching pesticide drift. (KUNC)
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Mueller weighs in on health care questions

A panel of experts including Keith Mueller, Gerhard Hartman Professor and head of health management and policy, weighed in with their thoughts on state-run insurance exchanges, health care reform, and other key questions. (WalletHub)
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CPH students contribute to the Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities

The UI's Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities (IISC), a program within the Office of Outreach and Engagement, does place-based community engagement. As part of IISC, College of Public Health students created a radon awareness campaign with Johnson County and the city of Iowa City. (Iowa Now)
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Petersen comments on dogs, tick exposure research

Recent research has connected human contact with dogs to increased contact with ticks by studying a niche population: people who work with hunting hounds. "You want to try to find the population that has the most exposure," said UI Associate Professor of Epidemiology Christine Petersen, the director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases. (Iowa Now)
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CPH summer walking group steps up workplace wellness

CPH staff members Bri Johnson, Kate Thrams, and Kim Merchant were instrumental in bringing a number of opportunities for workplace well-being to their colleagues. After a lunch and learn organized by the College of Public Health Staff Council focused on mindfulness and resilience, an attendee suggested doing more group activities. This led to several group walks to conquer the Summer Walking Scavenger Hunt. (Iowa Now)
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Federal funding for research increases at the University of Iowa

The University of Iowa had another strong year for projects that will benefit Iowans, the country, and world thanks to an increase in federal funding for research and the number of proposals, grants, and contracts awarded in fiscal year 2018. The College of Public Health saw in increase in research dollars, up 15 percent or $5.8 million over last year, to $43.8 million in FY 18. (Iowa Now)
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UI forced to make difficult budget decisions following state funding cuts

After back-to-back state budget cuts by the Iowa Legislature, the University of Iowa will close seven centers and furlough more than 30 individuals whose position is not directly tied to student instruction. The university also will reduce funding for a handful of other centers, including Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health based in the College of Public Health. (Iowa Now)
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Peek-Asa discusses swimming safety

More than 1,000 children drowned in the United States in 2016, according to a recent report from Safe Kids Worldwide. So how can Iowa reduce drowning deaths, including those in open water? First of all, children should be wearing life jackets, said Corinne Peek-Asa, associate dean for research and a professor in the UI College of Public Health. She also recommends parents use "touch supervision" with elementary-age or younger children--which means staying within arm's reach of kids in the water. (The Gazette)
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Schools participate in Healthy Schools-Healthy Student project

Starmont Elementary School in Arlington, Iowa, is among 20 schools participating in the Iowa Department of Education's Team Nutrition Healthy Schools-Healthy Students Project. Natoshia Askelson, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, is leading the evaluation of the project. (Oelwein Daily Register)
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Symposium looks at neighborhood, health connection

The recent symposium "Healthy Neighborhoods, Healthy Communities" drew about 100 professionals -- real estate agents, physicians, architects, and others. The symposium is part of the Invest Health initiative, a collaboration between Iowa City and the UI that is working with three local neighborhoods in an effort to improve residents' health. (The Gazette)
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Kaskie comments on older adults’ use of cannabis

As Canada prepares to legalize recreational cannabis on Oct. 17, usage is expected to increase, largely by older adults turning to pot for chronic pain and other age-related problems. There aren't a lot of 65-year-olds who suddenly start using marijuana just for the fun of it, said Brian Kaskie, CPH associate professor of health management and policy. But marijuana can be tricky to dose, it affects people differently, and while some new users experience nothing at all, others can have very unpleasant reactions. (Calgary Herald)
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Risk of preterm birth reliably predicted by blood tests

A team of scientists have developed a new blood test to predict a woman's risk of preterm birth when she is between 15 and 20 weeks pregnant, which may enable doctors to treat them early and thereby prevent severe complications later in the pregnancy. Kelli Ryckman, CPH associate professor of epidemiology, is the senior author of the study.
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CPH student leads hands-on sessions for STEM camp

The UI is offering a week-long camp for more than a dozen seventh- to ninth-grade girls to learn more about potential STEM careers. Kate Crawford, a doctoral student in industrial hygiene, helped lead hands-on demonstrations for the students. "I wasn't doing camps like this when I was that age, and I wish I was. I feel like it took me a while to figure out this is a career I want to be in," Crawford said. (KGAN)
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UI students, faculty make a difference in Mason City

The Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities is working with Mason City on roughly 20 projects throughout the community to make positive changes. Several UI groups are focused exclusively on the North End to improve the quality of life and the reputation of the neighborhood. As part of their work, a group of four public health graduate students explored stigma theory, which posits that stigma can lead to negative health outcomes. (Iowa Now)
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Grants help Iowa’s small cities revitalize their downtowns

Job losses and online competition have hit rural regional malls and retailers hard. But Ottumwa and other small Iowa cities are using state and federal grants to revitalize their downtowns. A grant partially funded by the college's Business Leadership Network helped spur a new bagel shop and public art in Ottumwa. (Des Moines Register)
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USPSTF: Don’t add ECG for cardio risk assessment

Adding electrocardiography screening to standard cardiovascular disease (CVD) assessment is not necessary for asymptomatic, low-risk adults, according to final recommendations from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. The recommendation against screening ECG applies to adults with no CVD symptoms or CVD diagnosis, wrote lead author Susan Curry, PhD, of the University of Iowa, and her colleagues. (Cardiology News)
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Study links food allergy to autism spectrum disorder in children

A new study from the University of Iowa finds that children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are more than twice as likely to suffer from a food allergy than children who do not have ASD. Wei Bao, assistant professor of epidemiology at the UI College of Public Health and the study's corresponding author, says the finding adds to a growing body of research that suggests immunological dysfunction as a possible risk factor for the development of ASD. (Multiple sources)
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Wright takes a closer look at hospital readmission rates

For the past several years, health care reform efforts have focused on reducing preventable hospital readmissions. However, a new study co-authored by Brad Wright, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy, suggests that when the rising number of non-admitted patients held for observation is factored in, declines in readmissions disappear. (Multiple Sources)
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Study to examine links between environmental exposures, cancers

The UI Center for Health Effects of Environmental Contamination has awarded $40,000 in cooperative funding to a team of researchers led by Paul Romitti, CPH professor of epidemiology. The team will investigate prenatal and postnatal exposures that may be linked to the development of breast and thyroid cancer in young adult women aged 20-39 years. (UIORED)
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Novak comments on effects of immigration raids on communities

Workplace immigration raids have increased dramatically nationwide in 2018. Raids have a similar effect on a community as natural disasters, terrorist attacks, or political violence, said Nicole Novak, a postdoctoral research scholar with the University of Iowa College of Public Health. "It breaks down the fabric of a community," Novak said. The immediate traumatic impact is especially intense for children, who are really developmentally vulnerable, she said. (Des Moines Register)
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Peek-Asa offers advice on teaching teens to drive

Teaching teens to drive can be stressful for both kids and parents. For Corinne Peek-Asa, director of the Injury Prevention Research Center at the University of Iowa, timing was everything when sharing feedback with her two teenage daughters. "I had to be patient with their moods," she explains. "It might have been a good time for me, but it wasn’t for them." (Washington Post)
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Mueller testifies at Senate hearing on rural health care

On May 24, Keith Mueller, interim dean of the University of Iowa College of Public Health and director and chair of RUPRI's Rural Health Initiatives, testified at a United States Senate Finance Committee Public Hearing on rural health. The hearing focused on challenges and opportunities in rural health care delivery.
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OCAD, BLN host Worker Health and Safety Forum

Oelwein Chamber and Area Development (OCAD) partnered with the Business Leadership Network (BLN) and the University of Iowa College of Public Health to bring a Worker Health and Safety Forum to the Plaza on Wednesday, May 16. (Oelwein Daily Register)
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CPH student uses tractor simulation study to make roads safer for farmers

Kayla Faust, a doctoral student in the College of Public Health, is conducting a study that uses a tractor simulation to help reduce the number of tractor-related fatalities. "Our goal of this study is to design realistic simulators so that we can prevent some of those crashes in the future and make rural roads safer," Faust said. (KWWL)
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Avoiding hay bale hazards

Large hay bales are indispensable in the livestock industry, but their massive size and weight can pose hazards when they fall or shift unexpectedly. Read more about safe handling and transport of bales in the latest 'Safety Watch' by UI industrial hygienist Stephanie Leonard. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Study looks at effectiveness of gowns, gloves in infection prevention

Contact Precautions (CPs)--wearing gowns and gloves--are often used in the care of patients infected with resistant bacteria. A recent review analyzed 14 studies that described hospitals' experiences in discontinuing contact precautions for multidrug-resistant organisms. The researchers, including CPH doctoral student Grace Ryan, found no increase in infection rates in those hospitals after discontinuation of routine use of CP. (Science Trends)
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Pulitzer Center 2018 Student Fellows announced

The Pulitzer Center has announced its 2018 cohort of student reporting fellows from its Campus Consortium, a national network of universities and colleges. Grace Pateras is the inaugural student fellow from the University of Iowa, which draws its candidates from the School of Journalism and College of Public Health. (Pulitzer Center blog)
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UI partners with ‘All of Us’ research initiative

The National Institutes of Health recently launched a precision medicine study -- or a model that customizes individual health care based on genes, environment, and lifestyle -- called the All of Us Research Program. The UI was awarded a $3.6 million grant over a three-year period to inform the public of the study. "We're not enrolling (people into All of Us), we're just trying to facilitate an environment that might be conducive to more people enrolling," said Rema Afifi, CPH professor of community and behavioral health. (The Gazette)
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Analysis finds more people trying e-cigarettes, fewer people keep using them

An analysis of federal data by University of Iowa researchers published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds that more American adults have tried e-cigarettes, but the rate of current use appears to be declining. Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, analyzed national data from more than 101,000 Americans who participated in the annual National Health Interview Survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the study. (Multiple Sources)
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Osterberg comments on health effects of large-scale pork production

With seven pigs to each Iowan and total pork production in the state up 30 percent in a decade, Iowans concerned about the environmental, health, and quality-of-life toll of Iowa's booming pork industry wonder if anything will slow it. "More and more evidence is coming to bear on the health effects of these facilities," said David Osterberg, CPH professor emeritus of occupational and environmental health. (The Gazette)
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CPH grad student creates simulation to decrease farming fatalities

CPH doctoral student Kayla Faust is working to reduce farm injuries and fatalities through the use of a specialized driving simulation. As an undergraduate student, Faust began working with the university's National Advanced Driving Simulator as a research assistant. "While studying at the driving simulator, I realized the safety benefits of simulated driving research could be extended to farm equipment such as tractors," she says. (Daily Iowan)
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Thorne comments on science transparency, data sharing

Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, recently proposed a rule that would require the EPA to release the data behind any studies used for crafting policies to protect the environment and public health -- but scientists, including CPH Professor Peter Thorne, have their own ideas about what kind of transparency leads to trustworthy science. (The Verge)
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Hamann discusses bicycle training safety programs

A report from the University of Iowa's Injury Prevention Research Center delved into nearly 100 bicycle training safety programs to determine if a "gold standard" for educating young riders exists. Such a program does not exist, but researchers believe it could. "This report really gives us a foundation to build upon to start building a gold standard program," said Cara Hamann, the study's lead author. (CBS2/FOX28)
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State Hygienic Lab teaches public health students

There is a State Hygienic Laboratory tradition of sharing knowledge and experiences in a public health laboratory that began in 1904 with the laboratory's first director, Dr. Henry Albert, and continues today with many staff members who mentor students, teach, and consult with clients and partners. Two of the laboratory's experts work directly with the UI College of Public to teach science courses: Laboratory Director Michael Pentella and Office of Research and Development Director Lucy DesJardin. (Lab Link)
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Edith Parker named new dean of College of Public Health

Edith Parker, professor and chair of the University of Iowa Department of Community and Behavioral Health, has been named dean of the UI College of Public Health. She will begin on June 1. Parker will be the third dean of the College of Public Health, which was founded in 1999. She succeeds Keith Mueller, Gerhard Hartman Professor of Health Management and Policy, who served as interim dean since April 2017. Mueller will return to his role as chair of the Department of Health Management and Policy. (Iowa Now)
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Study finds police more likely to crash in emergency mode

A recent study from the UI College of Public Health highlights the importance of being aware on the road, especially of emergency vehicles. "Our findings showed that police vehicles were at increased crash risk when they drive in emergency mode and were especially problematic for the youngest and oldest drivers," said Cara Hamann, co-author of the study. (Daily Iowan)
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Police officers urge drivers to pull over to prevent crashes

A new study shows Iowa police officers are 1.8 times more likely to get into a crash while responding to an emergency as opposed to a non-emergency situation. Rate of speed, road conditions, and lack of awareness are among key factors causing accidents, and in most cases, officers are not at fault. "Generally, the vehicles that are involved in crashes with emergency vehicles were more often at fault than the emergency vehicle drivers themselves," said Corinne Peek-Asa, the study's co-author. (KGAN)
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Novak comments on family repercussions of immigration raids

Workplace raids by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have consequences that extend beyond those arrested. "Young kids are developmentally sensitive to stresses involving family separation, and large-scale raids are an extreme form of that stress," says Nicole Novak, a postdoctoral research scholar at the Prevention Research Center in the UI College of Public Health. Novak previously led a study that looked at birth outcomes among infants born to Latina mothers after the federal immigration raid in Postville, Iowa, in 2008. (The New Yorker)
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Peek-Asa comments on stresses of farming

Corinne Peek-Asa, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, talks about some of the stressors and uncertainties that farmers face in a special report on the future of American farms. (Fox News)
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Safety Watch: Think about spring training before spring planting

With the spring planting season just around the corner, Brandi Janssen, director of I-CASH, writes about work-related musculoskeletal disorders and advises farmers on ways to reduce the wear and tear on tendons, joints and muscles. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Active Ottumwa to launch community survey

Barbara Baquero, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health and principal investigator of Active Ottumwa, discusses the many free activities offered by the program and an upcoming community-wide survey. (KYOU)
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Study on U.S. arthritis trends turns up some unexpected results

A recent study finds that while the prevalence of osteoarthritis has more than doubled over time, the prevalence of rheumatoid arthritis has declined. In addition, the prevalence of obese people with all types of arthritis has decreased significantly. Study co-authors included Angelico Mendy with the UI College of Public Health. (Newswise)
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UI study: Statins save lives of people with high levels of bad cholesterol

Cholesterol-lowering drugs are more likely to save thousands of additional lives when used in people with higher levels of LDL cholesterol, or "bad" cholesterol, according to a new UI study. Co-author Jennifer Robinson, CPH professor of epidemiology, says the findings show that doctors should more aggressively treat patients who have high levels of LDL cholesterol with statins, and patients should feel safe using them. (Iowa Now)
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Study looks at crashes involving emergency vehicles in Iowa

A new study from the UI College of Public Health finds that police cars are nearly twice as likely to be involved in a traffic accident when they’re in emergency mode than when they are not. The study notes that police officers face myriad distractions while responding to emergencies. (Iowa Now)
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New study finds lung stem cells repair airways after injury

Working in mice, researchers at the University of Iowa have identified a new population of stem cells that appear to be important for regenerating the airway following severe injury. This finding could have major implications for developing practical regenerative medicine approaches to treat airway diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and cystic fibrosis. The team included CPH researchers Peter Thorne and Andrea Adamcakova-Dodd. (EurekAlert)
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Pulitzer Center grantee Mark Johnson featured on CPH student podcast

During a two-day visit to Campus Consortium member University of Iowa, Pulitzer Center grantee Mark Johnson joined a student-run podcast to discuss current issues facing public health professionals. (Pulitzer Center)
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Limits on medical marijuana research hinders patient relief

Although 29 states have legalized marijuana to treat pain and other ailments, the growing number of Americans who use marijuana and the doctors who treat them are caught in the middle of a conflict in federal and state laws--a predicament that is only worsened by thin scientific data. "We just have no data on how many older adults are using medical marijuana, what they are using it for,and most importantly, what are the outcomes," says Brian Kaskie, a professor at the University of Iowa's College of Public Health. "It's all anecdotal." (NPR)
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Is telepharmacy taking pharmacy jobs?

Arizona is poised to become the 24th state to adopt telepharmacy legislation. Six other states have authorized pilot programs that could apply to telepharmacy and five states permit waivers of legislative or administrative requirements that could allow for telepharmacy, according to the Rural Policy Research Institute at the University of Iowa College of Public Health. As more states adopt telepharmacy legislation, some pharmacists are raising concerns over what it could mean for patients and the pharmacist job outlook. (Drug Topics)
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Islet transplantation improves quality of life for people with type 1 diabetes

Quality of life for people with type 1 diabetes who had frequent severe hypoglycemia--a potentially fatal low blood sugar level--improved consistently and dramatically following transplantation of insulin-producing pancreatic islets, according to findings published online March 21 in Diabetes Care. Eric Foster, CPH clinical assistant professor of biostatistics, is the corresponding author of the paper, and the Clinical Trials Statistical and Data Management Center served as the clinical and data coordinating center for the study. (Multiple sources)
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CTSA grant renewal totals $21 million

University of Iowa leaders announced the renewal of a $21 million grant of a Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences at the National Institutes of Health. Faculty and staff in the UI Carver College of Medicine, the UI Colleges of Public Health, Nursing, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the Tippie College of Business will use the grant to expand the university's research efforts beyond its borders to collect data from people in their home communities across the state. (Carver College of Medicine)
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Active Ottumwa offers activities to promote community health

Active Ottumwa, a community-based research program that encourages more physical activity, continues to expand its offerings, including recent tai chi and yoga classes hosted by Ottumwa Regional Hospital. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Vaccine for treating leishmaniasis in dogs can help curb spread to humans

A recent University of Iowa study reveals a vaccination used to treat dogs with leishmaniasis could be effective in containing its spread to humans. "No previous study has looked at using a vaccine as immunotherapy to improve the immune response in an animal that is already naturally infected," said Christine Petersen, the author of the study and a UI associate professor of epidemiology. "So, to show it was safe is a big deal." (Daily Iowan)
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Hinojosa discusses the effects of disparity

Maria Hinojosa, a journalist for more than 30 years for media outlets including CNN, spoke about disparity at the College of Public Health Building on Monday night. She began by saying she sees disparity every day. "If some people in our community are rising, then others are falling," she said. "There's a lot that I learned from those communities [in disparity], and it's important to recognize what they bring to the conversation." (Daily Iowan)
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Palmer speaks about ‘Hot, Hungry Planet’

On Tuesday night, environmental journalist Lisa Palmer spoke at Prairie Lights about her book "Hot, Hungry Planet," which documents the environmental, social, and economic factors leading to global food shortages. These shortages are only expedited by climate change. Palmer was also the keynote speaker for the College of Public Health Research Week. (Daily Iowan)
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Iowa schools participate in Healthy Schools-Healthy Students project

Starmont Elementary in Arlington, Iowa, is one of 20 elementary schools across the state participating in the Healthy Schools-Healthy Students project. The project includes food tastings, school nutrition trainings, and changes to the lunchroom environment. Natoshia Askelson, CPH assistant professor, is leading the evaluation of the intervention. (Oelwein Daily Register)
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Nutrition experts explore connection between diet, obesity, and cancer

A special theme issue of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics looks at the connection between diet, obesity, and cancer. "Registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) play such an important role in both cancer prevention and cancer care. Our profession is involved in research to investigate diet-cancer relationships, as well as supporting individuals and communities in making lifestyle changes for cancer prevention and treatment," says Linda Snetselaar, editor-in-chief of the journal and CPH professor of epidemiology. (Medicalxpress)
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Vaccine to treat leishmaniasis in dogs could reduce its spread to humans

A new study from the University of Iowa finds that a vaccine that effectively reduces the incidence of a parasitic disease in dogs might also help thousands of Iraq war veterans infected with the same disease. Christine Petersen, associate professor of epidemiology in the UI College of Public Health and the study's lead author, says that infected dogs are the main reservoir of the disease in humans, which is then transmitted via sand flies. (Iowa Now)
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Mueller comments on rural struggles to keep drugstores

Changes in the health care system and deep cuts in drug reimbursement rates have left scores of small towns without a pharmacist on duty. Keith Mueller, CPH interim dean and director of the Rural Policy Research Institute Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis, commented on the issues that are squeezing all pharmacies, particularly smaller ones.
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Curry appointed chair of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force

Sue Curry, University of Iowa interim executive vice president and provost and distinguished professor of health management and policy in the UI College of Public Health, has been appointed chair of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. (Iowa Now)
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Play highlights issues around families and addiction

Iowa-based playwright Jennifer Fawcett's new play "Apples in Winter" presents a complicated and emotional glimpse of the burden of addiction on families. As part of the production, Riverside Theatre is partnering with local groups, including the UI College of Public Health, to hold panel discussions that highlight some of the issues the play brings to light. (Iowa Public Radio)
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EPA’s Science Advisory Board hasn’t met in 6 months

The U.S. EPA Science Advisory Board has not met in at least six months, and some of its members say it's being sidelined. In the past, the board would have held at least one two-day meeting and two or three teleconferences in a six-month period, said Peter Thorne, a professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health who spent six years on SAB, including two as chairman. (Scientific American)
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2018 Cancer in Iowa report issued

An estimated 6,300 Iowans will die from cancer in 2018, 18 times the number killed in auto accidents, according to a new report released March 6 by the State Health Registry of Iowa, based in the University of Iowa College of Public Health. Lung cancer will continue to be the most common cause of cancer death for both males and females and will be responsible for about 1,640—or about one out of every four—cancer deaths in Iowa, according to Cancer in Iowa: 2018. (Multiple sources)
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U.S. injury centers fight opioid epidemic

CPH Associate Professor Carri Casteel recently participated in a congressional briefing in Washington, D.C., on how a network of 10 Injury Control Research Centers are tackling the nation's deadly opioid epidemic. Casteel participated in the briefing's panel that focused on the challenges in rural America, where around 46 million people face health disparities, including adverse outcomes from opioids. (IPRC)
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Janz contributes to key federal report on physical activity guidelines

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently released the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee Scientific Report. Kathleen Janz, UI professor of health and human physiology, served as one of 17 members of the ad hoc committee tasked with updating federal guidelines on physical activity. Janz has a secondary appointment with the UI Department of Epidemiology in the College of Public Health. (CLAS)
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Op-ed: Mueller writes about the importance of higher ed to Iowans’ health

Keith Mueller, CPH interim dean, recently wrote a guest opinion about the important role of public higher education in the health and well-being of Iowans. "The college's undergraduate, graduate, and certificate training programs promote the health of communities by preparing graduates who are trained to address the root causes of diseases and injuries and, whenever possible, to develop effective prevention strategies," Mueller writes. (Daily Iowan)
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NeuroNEXT combines expertise to find treatments for neurological disorders

NeuroNEXT, a consortium initiated by the National Institutes of Health, brings together clinical trial sites and coordinating centers to study neurological disorders. "The idea is it expands the accessibility to do these trials so that an investigator who doesn't have a lot of experience can use the expertise through the network," said Christopher Coffey, director of the Clinical Trials Statistical and Data Management Center. (Daily Iowan)
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Agricultural Safety Awareness Week is March 4-10

March 4-10 has been designated as Agricultural Safety Awareness Week. U.S. Agricultural Safety and Health Centers will join Farm Bureau in promoting the week with its theme No One Can Take Your Place. "Agricultural safety continues to be a sound investment for farmer and ranchers," said Brandi Janssen, outreach co-director of the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health at the University of Iowa. "Focusing on safety and health on the farm helps save lives and protects our most important resources in agriculture, our farmers and farmworkers." (GPCAH)
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Baquero discusses her work on health disparities

Barbara Baquero, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, recently spoke about her work focusing on community-based health behavior interventions to reduce health inequalities related to obesity and cancer among Latinos in low-resource communities. (Public Health Minute)
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Trans fatty acid concentration linked to diabetes in U.S. adults

U.S. adults with a diet high in trans fatty acids are more than twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes than adults with a diet low in trans fatty acids, according to findings published in the Journal of Diabetes. "Reducing trans fatty acids intake may improve glucose metabolism and lower the risk of diabetes," says corresponding author Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology. (Healio)
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Fulbright award recipient studying smoking cessation in Romania

Sixteen UI students received prestigious Fulbright awards in the 2017-18 term, ranking the UI No. 15th nationally among research universities. One of the award recipients, PharmD/MPH student Jasmine Mangrum, is studying smoking cessation education for student pharmacists at Cluj-Napoca's Medical University Pharmacy Faculty in Romania. (The Gazette)
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CTSDMC contributes to groundbreaking neurological research through NeuroNEXT

NeuroNEXT, a national network funded by the National Institutes of Health and led by the University of Iowa, is accelerating the clinical trial process for neurological diseases with the expectation of bringing drugs to market in less time, with less money and less risk. The College of Public Health's Clinical Trials and Statistical Data Management Center (CTSDMC) is the data coordinating center for the initiative. (Iowa Now)
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Mueller comments on the future of rural hospitals

As the health care system shifts toward paying for patient outcomes, hospitals will focus on reducing cost, improving quality, and boosting consumer experience. Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis, said that he expects smaller hospitals--both rural and urban--to continue to affiliate with other hospitals. This gives them the larger scale they need for greater purchasing power, delivery of services, and negotiating with insurers. (Healthline)
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Rohlman studying effects of pesticide exposure on adolescents in Egypt

Diane Rohlman, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, is working with investigators from Menoufia University in Egypt and other partners to examine the effects of pesticide exposure on the developing adolescent brain. In Egypt, adolescents are traditionally involved in the agricultural industry as field workers. "Teenagers are usually hired by the Ministry of Agriculture to work during the summer months, but they face significant risks to the harmful effects of pesticides," said Rohlman. (NIEHS)
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Robinson studies need for beta-blockers after a heart attack

Two large observational studies published last year in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology are raising questions about the need for beta-blockers in all patients after a first heart attack. Jennifer Robinson, professor of epidemiology and medicine at the University of Iowa, is a co-author of one of the new observational studies. (JAMA Network)
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Bosnian photographer Majda Turkic discusses cyberbullying project

Bosnian photographer Majda Turkic recently visited the College of Public Health to discuss her photography project that explores the effects of cyberbullying. "It's hard to recognize the victim because the victim hides or tries to be invisible," Turkic said. "Many schools in many countries don't have the mechanisms to protect this behavior and protect victims." (Daily Iowan)
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UI takes action against opioid epidemic

The Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development is partnering with the College of Public Health, the Human Resources Office of Organizational Effectiveness, and the Institute for Clinical and Translational Science to organize an initiative at the university to combat the opioid epidemic. CPH alumnus Chris Buresh (12MPH), a UI clinical professor of emergency medicine, said working to prevent further opioid abuse is significant, and he believes the Ideas Lab will be a great way to promote diverse ideas for potential solutions. (Daily Iowan)
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Pediatric migraine study selected for “Best Advances of 2017”

A study of the impact of medication on children's migraine headaches, co-led by the UI's Christopher Coffey, has been named one of the leading developments in neuroscience in 2017 by the journal Neurology Today. The UI Clinical Trials Statistical and Data Management Center (CTSDMC) served as the Data Coordinating Center for the study. (Iowa Now)
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Baker studies how hygiene practices affect women’s health in rural India

A group of public health researchers, headed by Kelly Baker at the University of Iowa College of Public Health, recently studied 3,952 girls and women from two rural districts in India to understand the relationship between hygiene practices and self-reported reproductive tract infections symptoms. (Research Matters)
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Report calls for hog farm moratorium in Iowa

A new report on the rapid expansion of hog farms in Iowa calls for a moratorium on new barns and concludes that the state's regulatory system is failing to protect the environment and public health for the sake of profit of the politically powerful livestock industry. "A tipping point has been reached. Rural Iowans have every reason to be concerned," said the report released by retired University of Iowa professors James Merchant and David Osterberg. (Associated Press)
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CPH hosts MLK Jr. Celebration of Human Rights Week events

The University of Iowa College of Public Health Diversity and Inclusion Committee hosted a viewing of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech and a privilege walk as part of the 2018 MLK Jr. Celebration of Human Rights Week. (Daily Iowan)
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Impacts of the CAFO explosion on water quality and public health

In an op-ed, CPH professors emeriti James Merchant and David Osterberg outline the impact of concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) on Iowa's water and air quality. (Des Moines Register)
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Article on Iowa’s Medicaid expansion selected as editor’s pick for 2017

An article by Natoshia Askelson and colleagues was selected by the editor of Health Affairs as one of the top ten articles for 2017. Co-authors of the article, "Iowa's Medicaid Expansion Promoted Healthy Behaviors but Was Challenging to Implement and Attracted Few Participants," included Brad Wright, Suzanne Bentler, Elizabeth T. Momany, and Peter Damiano. (Health Affairs Blog)
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Brathwaite comments on Obermann Graduate Institute experience

MPH student Don Brathwaite was one of 16 students who participated in the Obermann Graduate Institute on Engagement and the Academy earlier this month. "I think a lot of times people see an issue in the community and they want to go in and make changes, but they don't get input from the people living there," Brathwaite says. "I want to learn more about that process and exact change in communities in need." (Iowa Now)
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Mueller part of panel on reinventing rural health care

Keith Mueller, CPH interim dean and director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis, recently took part in a panel discussion on "Reinventing Rural Health Care: A Case Study of Seven Upper Midwest States." A recording of the discussion and supporting documents are available online. (Bipartisan Policy Center)
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Couple recalls close call with hydrogen sulfide

Jason and Roxanne Fevold of Webster City, Iowa, share their story of how Jason nearly died from exposure to deadly hydrogen sulfide gas in a hog confinement building. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Telemedicine improves rural ER response time

Emergency department patients at rural hospitals using telemedicine see a clinician six minutes sooner than patients in hospitals that have no such technology, a new study from University of Iowa shows. And if that first clinician assessment is through a telemedicine encounter, the door-to-provider time is shortened by nearly 15 minutes, says study lead author Nicholas Mohr, MD, an emergency physician and associate professor at the Carver College of Medicine at the University of Iowa. (Multiple sources)
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Op-ed urging radon testing cites CPH

A recent letter to the editor urges Iowans to test for radon in their homes, noting "the University of Iowa College of Public Health tells us that although the EPA urges us to mitigate a home that tests at 4.0pCi/L, one-third of Iowans who die because of radon were living with a level between 2-4pCi/L." (Newton Daily News)
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Thorne comments on EPA office director’s departure

Chris Zarba, director of the EPA's Science Advisory Board (SAB) Staff Office, recently announced his planned Feb. 2 departure. Zarba "is just a tremendous individual and the EPA will certainly be less without him," said Peter Thorne, a professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health who spent six years on SAB, the last two as chair. (Greenwire)
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Bao discusses prevalence of autism in the United States

A new UI analysis of data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests 2.4 percent of American children ages 3 to 17 -- or 1 in 41 -- have an autism diagnosis. Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, recently spoke about the analysis on Iowa Public Radio and with Spectrum magazine. (Multiple Sources)
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UI analysis finds more children are diagnosed with autism than previously thought

The number of children in the United States diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder may be significantly higher than previously thought, according to a new UI analysis published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology and corresponding author of the analysis, says the higher number shows the need for officials to think about reallocating health care resources to care for significantly more people with autism. (Multiple Sources)
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Anthony comments on protecting workers from chemical exposures

Some manufacturing workers develop skin sensitization over time due to exposure to harmful chemicals. T. Renee Anthony, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health, said factories must choose personal protective equipment specifically rated to protect workers from each chemical being handled. "If the chemical has [a] known health outcome," she said, "they've got to protect workers from it." (Des Moines Register)
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Op-ed: Enhancing Iowa’s flexibility to reform insurance markets

Brad Wright, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy, recently co-authored an opinion piece stating that now is the time for Iowa to craft a new state innovation waiver for the individual insurance market and ease the concerns that derailed the stopgap measure last fall. (Des Moines Register)
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Study: Alcohol involvement leads to more devastating farm-equipment crashes

A relatively low portion of accidents between farm equipment and passenger vehicles involve alcohol. But those that do tend to be more dangerous and deadly, according to a new study from the UI's Great Plains Center for Agriculture Health. (Multiple Sources)
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Healthy workforce topic of recent BLN community forum

The college's Business Leadership Network hosted a community forum Dec. 14 in Oelwein on building a healthy and productive workforce. Recurring themes throughout the program included helping employees to become more active through incentives and encouragement, developing soft skills such as conflict management and cooperation, and giving employees tools they need to understand mental health issues that can arise in the workplace. (Oelwein Daily Register)
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Linn County Public Health employee wins hero award

Julie Stephens, a public health emergency preparedness and disaster recovery specialist at Linn County Public Health, has been honored as one of three Iowa Public Health Heroes by the University of Iowa College of Public Health. Throughout her career, Stephens credits others for her success, stating that their willingness to collaborate and work together made everything possible. (The Gazette)
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Robinson comments on communication benefits of talking to the press

In a recent questionnaire, many health care providers agreed that talking to the press can make them better communicators with their patients. "I do find that over time I develop essential messages into high impact 'sound bites' for patients," said Jennifer Robinson, a cardiovascular epidemiologist at the University of Iowa. (MedPage Today)
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UI joins other groups to study HPV-vaccine use

The University of Iowa is taking part is a yearlong study to investigate why human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines lag behind, compared with other vaccines for adolescents, in rural areas of the state. "The gap between adolescents being given this vaccine and others is definitely more pronounced in rural areas," said CPH Assistant Professor Natoshia Askelson, the director of the project. "We want to identify the factors that could be worked on so that all parents can vaccinate their children." (Daily Iowan)
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Farm equipment operators should be cautious of alcohol-impaired drivers

A recent five-year study identified more than 60 alcohol-related crashes involving farm equipment in four Midwestern states. Most crashes resulted from the impaired passenger vehicle driver rear-ending or running head-on into the farm equipment. Not surprisingly, a greater percentage of the alcohol-impaired crashes occurred at night and on weekends.
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Study finds routine care of hydrogen sulfide monitors is needed to save lives

Some livestock producers are starting to wear low-cost gas monitors to provide warning alarms when hydrogen sulfide gases are released and become dangerous to life and health. UI researchers recently tested several monitors' performance over time, simulating what they might be exposed to over one year of use in a livestock environment.
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Cass County Hospital receives Business Leadership grant

Cass County Memorial Hospital is among six businesses to receive a grant from the University of Iowa's College of Public Health, which recently announced its Business Leadership Network Community Grants. The hospital received the award for its Walk Cass County project which aims to expand and encourage walking as a way to connect families and friends while gaining health benefits. (Atlantic News Telegraph)
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Petersen’s team researching leishmaniasis in foxhounds, humans

The research Christine Petersen and her colleagues are conducting on leishmaniasis is bringing much-needed insight to the problem of the disease in foxhounds and, ultimately, humans. "Because of implications of how this could help all infected creatures (not just dogs), we ran the trial all they way to the human clinical trial level," says Petersen, CPH associate professor of epidemiology. (Covertside)
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Field comments on high radon levels in North Dakota town

When an elderly resident of Casselton, ND, was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis, her family tested her home for radon and found shockingly high numbers for the radioactive gas. Although the city sent out a health alert about radon, "there should be more of an effort to see if it's widespread," says radon expert Bill Field, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health. (West Fargo Pioneer)
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UI receives NIH grant to promote All of Us research program

The National Institutes of Health has awarded the UI a $3.6 million grant to create and distribute educational materials about precision medicine and health care decisions. "We're trying to understand the factors, both personal and environmental, that are most associated with well-being, and one of the key points of that is ensuring we're actually able to reach all different types of characteristics of people and to not increase the inequities that are already present," said CPH Professor Rema Afifi, one of the grant's three co-principal investigators. (Daily Iowan)
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Number of genetic markers linked to lifespan triples

A new large-scale international study expands the number of genetic markers now known to be associated with exceptional longevity. The team of researchers, which included Bob Wallace, CPH professor of epidemiology, undertook a genome-wide search for variants influencing how long participants' parents lived. Their findings indicated genes that could one day be targeted to help prolong human life. (EurekAlert)
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CTSDMC working with Michael J. Fox Foundation to find cure for Parkinson’s disease

The Clinical Trials Statistical Data Management Center (CTSDMC) in the UI College of Public Health has been working with the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research since 2009, gathering and analyzing data collected during numerous studies the foundation funds to find a treatment for the disease. (Iowa Now)
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Business Leadership Network announces 2018 Community Grant awards

The University of Iowa College of Public Health and its Business Leadership Network announced six award recipients through the third year of the Community Grant Project. The organizations will receive cash grant awards of up to $3,000. The recipients are: Cass County Memorial Hospital, Atlantic; Fayette County Substance Abuse Coalition, Fayette; Lee County Health Department, Fort Madison; Living Proof Exhibit, Davenport; Muscatine Center for Social Action, Muscatine; and Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging, Waterloo.
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UI to lead educational campaign about precision medicine

The University of Iowa has been awarded $3.6 million from the National Institutes of Health to lead a new national campaign to educate Americans and health care professionals about personalized medicine. The UI will create and distribute educational information for the All of Us Research Program. Rema Afifi, CPH professor of community and behavioral health, is one of the grant's three co-principal investigators. The team also includes Edith Parker, CPH professor and chair of community and behavioral health. (Iowa Now)
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Thorne comments on EPA Science Advisory Board changes

Earlier this month, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt fired all Science Advisory Board members who currently receive EPA grants for their research, saying they cannot remain objective if they accept agency money. "The job of the Science Advisory Board is to ensure that the EPA is using the best science in all its decision-making," said Peter Thorne, former chairman of the Science Advisory Board. "It's an insult to fine research programs to say that those of us funded by those programs are not qualified to advise on these issues." (Salon)
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CPH honors public health heroes

On Wednesday, Linda Kalin, Julie Stephens, and Denise Wheeler were recognized as the "2017 Iowa Public Health Heroes" by the University of Iowa College of Public Health. "This is an event we're always really excited about," says CPH Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Tanya Uden-Holman. "I think it shows the diversity of public health and the range of ways that we make a difference on a daily basis." (Daily Iowan)
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Groups join in pioneering LGBTQ health survey

One Iowa, the University of Iowa College of Public Health, the Iowa Cancer Consortium, and Des Moines University are partnering on a survey to learn more about the health status of the LGBTQ community in Iowa. The organizations decided to conduct a survey because of insufficient information about the health of the population. The survey runs through Dec. 8. (Daily Iowan)
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Kalin named a 2017 Iowa Public Health Hero

Linda Kalin is the executive director of the Sioux City-based Iowa Poison Control Center, a 24-hour operation that provides callers with immediate advice on how to handle poison emergencies. Her commitment to the center has not gone unnoticed. On Tuesday, she was one of three people recognized as a 2017 Iowa Public Health Hero. (Sioux City Journal)
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Stroke deaths decrease in Iowa

A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with data gathered by a University of Iowa College of Public Health task force, showed that Iowa is one of 13 states nationwide that saw a steady drop in stroke death rates from 2000 to 2015. According to the study, the decline can be attributed to several factors, including development of a statewide stroke registry. (The Gazette)
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Op-ed: EPA scientific integrity in the balance

In a recent op-ed, Peter Thorne and his colleague Deborah Swackhamer wrote: "A recent decision by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to restrict membership of the agency's many advisory boards not only jeopardizes the quality and independence of those boards, it amounts to scientific censorship and puts the health of Americans at risk." (Des Moines Register)
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Gallagher talks about importance of Pulitzer Center’s Campus Consortium Network

The University of Iowa's College of Public Health recently hosted Pulitzer Center grantee Sean Gallagher for a two-day visit to the campus, where Gallagher was able to share his work with students. The visit was the first collaboration between the Pulitzer Center and the University of Iowa, one of the newest members of the Campus Consortium, a network of over 30 universities and colleges across the country. The partnership brings education and fellowship opportunities to Iowa students. (Pulitzer Center)
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Thorne comments on shift in EPA advisers

Until recently, Peter Thorne, CPH professor and head of occupational and environmental health, chaired the EPA's Science Advisory Board, the agency's most prominent advising body. Thorne says he's worried changes at the EPA will limit the agency's ability to protect public health and the environment. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Janssen discusses small- and large-scale farming

When most people think of Iowa, one thing comes to mind: cornfields. But what many people don't realize, however, is the overlap between small- and large-scale farms. University of Iowa Clinical Assistant Professor Brandi Janssen recently discussed the dichotomy in a "Science on Tap" forum. (Daily Iowan)
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Afifi: Most shisha users start habit from families

Most of the shisha users, including women, in Arab countries have started the habit from their families that still discourage cigarettes. Shisha is a water pipe made of clay, ornately carved metals or plastics, which enables smoking flavored tobacco as it is bubbled through water. Parents encourage water pipe use under the impression that it is less harmful than cigarettes, said Rema Afifi, CPH professor of community and behavioral health. (Gulf News)
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Study finds no firm cancer link to popular weedkiller

A large long-term study on the use of the big-selling weedkiller glyphosate by agricultural workers in the United States has found no firm link between exposure to the herbicide and cancer. The research team was led by CPH alumna Laura Beane-Freeman (99MS, 03PhD) and included Charles Lynch, CPH professor of epidemiology. (Reuters)
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Thorne comments on changes in EPA research policy

Peter Thorne, professor of occupational and environmental health in the UI College of Public Health and former chair of the EPA's Science Advisory Board, comments on proposed changes in the agency that would prevent scientists who receive EPA funding from acting as advisors. (NPR)
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CTSDMC part of potentially game-changing Parkinson’s study

The UI College of Public Health's Clinical Trials Statistical Data Management Center (CTSDMC) will collect and analyze data for a follow-up study testing whether a drug approved to treat cancer can be repurposed for Parkinson's patients, potentially slowing the disease's progression or even reversing its effects. This newest collaboration adds to a growing list of Fox Foundation projects on which the UI center has been working -- a partnership that began in 2009. (The Gazette)
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EPA bars scientists it funds from serving on its advisory boards

On Oct. 31, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) moved to ban researchers who receive agency grants from serving on EPA advisory boards. "It's a disturbing and short-sighted action," says Peter Thorne, who chaired the agency's main science advisory board until the end of September. Thorne, professor and head of occupational and environmental health at the University of Iowa, says that the board already has policies in place to deal with conflicts of interest. "I'm really baffled as to why this is necessary," he says. (Nature)
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Wright comments on ACA costs in Iowa

A story outlining how the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has played out in Iowa highlights a number of challenges the state faces, including a lack of providers in rural areas. "If you go four hours east, you can carve up the providers in Chicago - in Iowa you can't do that," explains Brad Wright, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy. "That makes it hard to keep costs down." (Huffington Post)
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Iowa withdraws request to establish alternative insurance model

Iowa's Republican leaders have withdrawn their proposal to establish an alternative individual health insurance system to replace the Affordable Care Act's exchange marketplace. The plan may have fallen victim to Trump's recent decision to halt cost-sharing reduction payments to insurers. The state originally was counting on those funds to help finance its alternative coverage system, said Keith Mueller, interim dean of the UI College of Public Health. (Modern Healthcare)
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Wright comments on health care executive orders

Brad Wright, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy, discussed the effects that two recent health care executive orders could have on small businesses. "Small businesses can band together to provide insurance," Wright explained. "But the government under federal law gets rid of any kind of protections you might expect -- coverage could be less generous. It's cheaper but not as robust of an insurance product." (The Gazette)
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Fluharty discusses barriers for rural students to attend college

The culture of rural communities plays a factor in rural students not going to college in the same numbers as other young adults, which can be detrimental if the rural economy begins to fail. Charles Fluharty, the president and CEO of the Rural Policy Research Institute based in the College of Public Health, said this affects all students but focuses on rural white males and varies by community. (Daily Iowan)
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IPRC presents report to Iowa’s Opioid Epidemic Evaluation Study Committee

On Oct. 16, the University of Iowa Injury Prevention Research Center (IPRC) presented a report to Iowa's Opioid Epidemic Evaluation Study Committee to evaluate the state's place in the current opioid epidemic. The report detailed policy priorities to attack the epidemic in the state. (Daily Iowan)
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Youth groups encourage farmer safety

This fall, with support from Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH), 20 4-H and FFA chapters across Iowa will distribute nearly 2,000 "Stay Safe, Take a Break" bags to farmers this harvest season. I-CASH supplied safety materials, including hearing protection, disposable N95 masks, information about equipment vibration, hearing loss, and roadway safety. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Mueller discusses challenges facing rural hospitals

A study last year sponsored by the National Rural Health Association found 673 rural hospitals were at risk of closure and 210 are considered to be at an extreme risk for closing. Rural hospitals must attract more patients with employer-based insurance and adequate coverage to improve their payer mix and gain financial sustainability, says Keith Mueller, interim dean of the UI College of Public Health. (Columbia Daily Tribune)
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Opinion: Nation’s opioid problem deserves attention in Iowa

A new report by the UI Injury Prevention Research Center shares troubling numbers about the extent to which Iowa faces a problem of opioid abuse. Later this month, the report will be discussed with an interim legislative study committee charged with evaluating Iowa's response to the nation's opioid crisis. The committee will make recommendations to Gov. Kim Reynolds and the Legislature by Nov. 15. We give credit both to the U of I for its eye-opening report and to state government for its examination of ways Iowa should respond to this problem. (Sioux City Journal)
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UI, Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting partner on underreported global issues

Beijing-based photojournalist Sean Gallagher recently spoke with UI journalism and public health students as the first visitor in the university's partnership with the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting. Gallagher's work focuses on the impact of climate change on people in Asia. (Iowa Now)
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Study shows increase in fireworks injuries

A review of the admissions at the University of Iowa Hospitals shows a big increase in the number of injuries from fireworks during the first legal period for their purchase this past June and July. The University of Iowa Injury Prevention and Research Center conducted the review along with the surgical center, where Dr. Ann Romanowski works. She says they compared fireworks injuries to the previous three years when fireworks were not legal. She says 57 percent of the patients who were injured this year needed surgery, compared to 20 percent in the prior years. Romanowski says many of the new injuries happened to young people. (Radio Iowa)
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Preconception vitamin D may reduce gestational diabetes risk

Women reporting daily vitamin D supplementation of at least 400 IU per day before becoming pregnant were nearly 30 percent less likely to develop gestational diabetes than women who did not report taking a vitamin D supplement, according to an analysis of the Nurses' Health Study II cohort. Wei Bao, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology, co-authored the study.
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Study finds high levels of lead in 1 in 5 Iowa newborns

A recent study of Iowa newborn blood samples showed that 1 in 5 newborns had high blood lead levels, regardless of whether their mother lived in a city or a rural area. The higher levels statewide likely are related to the amount of pre-1940s housing stock in Iowa, when lead paint was commonly used. The study team included CPH researchers Audrey Saftlas, Jacob Oleson, and Kelli Ryckman. (Lab Link)
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Op-Ed: Five ways to reduce opioid overdose deaths in Iowa

CPH Associate Professor Carri Casteel and attorney Kevin Techau co-authored a recent op-ed that outlines five priorities for countering the opioid epidemic. The priorities were formed by a group of stakeholders convened by the University of Iowa. (Des Moines Register)
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UI report addresses prescription opioid, heroin epidemic in Iowa

A new report from the University of Iowa includes several policy and program recommendations to address the state's opioid crisis after a review process involving dozens of stakeholders from across the state. Carri Casteel, associate professor of occupational and environmental health in the UI College of Public Health and report co-author, says the epidemic is affecting all Iowans, whether they live in rural or urban counties. (Multiple sources)
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Fluharty comments on the rural higher-ed crisis

In the U.S., the high school graduates who go on to college in the lowest proportions are the ones from rural places. While the reasons vary, many are historic. Rural students live in places where it once was possible to make a decent living from farming, mining, and timber-harvesting, said Charles Fluharty, the president and CEO of the Rural Policy Research Institute at the University of Iowa. "You could get those jobs, so why should you go to college?" (The Atlantic)
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Kaskie studies marijuana use among seniors

The CDC has found that marijuana use among adults over 65 increased more than 300 percent between 2002 and 2014. Brian Kaskie, CPH associate professor of health management and policy, is studying this population's usage habits. "Older adults are, for example, more likely to have a prescription medication to begin with. And so how does the use of cannabis intersect with that?" he says. "That becomes one question — we don’t know." (Colorado Public Radio)
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UI collaborating with multiple agencies for a resilient Iowa

The University of Iowa Colleges of Medicine, Education, and Public Health are collaborating with multiple statewide initiatives and governmental agencies to organize an invitation-only workshop titled "Collaborating for a Resilient Iowa Through a Trauma-Informed Lens" to be held on Sept. 25-26 in Coralville. (The Gazette)
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UI project uncovers correlation between housing and health

The UI College of Public Health is working with the city of Iowa City to develop a plan to improve health in some neighborhoods. The team is narrowing their focus to Hilltop, Broadway, and Towncrest neighborhoods, where 20 percent of residents in a recent survey indicated they are diagnosed with asthma. (CBS2Iowa)
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INVEST Health seeks to improve health of three Iowa City neighborhoods

The UI College of Public Health is working with the city of Iowa City to promote better health among residents in three neighborhoods. The team is developing a strategic plan through a program called INVEST Health, which examines how neighborhoods and housing affect the health of the people who live in them. (Iowa Now)
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Farmer recounts ATV rollover ordeal

In June 2106, Kenny Patterson, a farmer from Cherokee, Iowa, was spraying thistles in a lower pasture when his four-wheeler overturned and rolled onto him, breaking his right femur near the hip. "I was instantly (mad at myself). ... Stupid, stupid," he said about driving on a sloped grade with uneven terrain. "I thought, 'This four-wheeler is gonna catch on fire and burn up; I don't want to get toasted too.'" For the next five hours, he inched his way up the hill using his arms and elbows. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Wright discusses the stopgap, guardrails, and the ‘spirit of the waiver’

Brad Wright, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy, recently answered questions about Iowa's proposed stopgap measure that would set up reinsurance as well as offer both age- and income-based tax credits. (The Gazette)
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Mueller discusses population health management

Population health management is the term du jour in the health care industry. The idea is to use data to target high users of the health care system who are likely accepting services in an inefficient way. Once that person is identified, health care providers work to treat that individual's medical needs as well as his or her social needs. To do so, said Keith Mueller, interim dean of the UI College of Public Health, health care providers have to go outside the four walls of a clinic and work collaboratively with agencies to address a person's social determinants of health. (The Gazette)
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DNR scoring system fails to protect Iowans’ air, water, health

The "Master Matrix" is the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) scoring system designed to bring county government into the process of locating large concentrated animal feeding operations. CPH Professors Emeriti David Osterberg and James Merchant recently wrote about why the entire process of approving animal confinement facilities needs to be changed. (Des Moines Register)
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CPH undergraduate program continues to grow

The new College of Public Health undergraduate program is welcoming 34 new students, in addition to the 40 who enrolled last year. Read what sophomores Mikaela Mikkelsen and Austin Wu have to say about their decisions to pursue public health. (Iowa Now)
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Six genes linked with preterm births

Researchers have found mutations in six genes that affect whether a woman is likely to have a preterm baby. The findings could lead to ways to test women and perhaps intervene to help keep the developing baby safe in the mother's womb for as long as possible, the researchers reported in the New England Journal of Medicine. The research team included Kelli Ryckman, CPH associate professor of epidemiology. (NBC News)
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Active Ottumwa helps residents get more physically active

The obesity rate in Iowa for 2016 stands at 32.0 percent, down from 32.1 percent the previous year, according to the CDC. Active Ottumwa is working to help people become active, which will make them more physically fit. (KYOU)
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Ward discusses NQF quality measurement framework plan for telehealth

A recent National Quality Forum (NQF)report aims to set a national framework for measuring and supporting success in telehealth and telemedicine. "Telehealth is a vital resource, especially for people in rural areas seeking help from specialists, such as mental health providers," says Marcia Ward, director of the UI Rural Telehealth Research Center and co-chair of NQF's Telehealth Committee. "Telehealth is health care. It is critically important that we measure the quality of telehealth and identify areas for improvement just as we do for in-person care." (Multiple sources)
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Wright comments on Iowa’s waiver request

Iowa is looking to create a temporary, standardized health insurance policy to stabilize the state's troubled individual insurance market. The proposed changes will test the Affordable Care Act's waiver guardrails; Federal officials promised in March to be more flexible with these waivers. "If it gets approved I think that's a signal to other states the administration is willing to take a pretty liberal interpretation of this waiver authority," says Brad Wright, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy. (Bloomberg BNA)
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UI study looks at hospitalization costs associated with gun injuries

Hospitalization costs associated with gun injuries in the U.S. exceeded $622 million a year, according to a new study by the University of Iowa College of Public Health. "These findings demonstrate the high health care cost burden of firearm injuries," says Corinne Peek-Asa, lead author of the study and professor of environmental and occupational health in the UI College of Public Health. "Efforts to prevent these injuries, particularly assaults and injuries caused by handguns, could reduce this cost burden." (Multiple sources)
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CPH, UI Health Care host national neurology clinical trial training program

From Aug. 7 to 11, University of Iowa hosted the NINDS Clinical Trials Methodology Course (CTMC). Now in its fourth year, the CTMC is a national program that trains junior neurology faculty and fellows from academic medical centers to develop scientifically rigorous yet practical clinical trial protocols. The course is taught by expert faculty who are considered leaders in the fields of neurological clinical trials, including specialists from the UI College of Public Health and UI Health Care. (The Loop)
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Iowa, Oklahoma seek to reform the ACA through waivers

Iowa officials plan to submit a sweeping state innovation waiver request to the CMS next week that would substantially revamp the ACA premium tax credit model and use some of the federal subsidy money to set up a reinsurance program to protect insurers that sign up high-cost enrollees. "I wouldn't be surprised if other states aren't already developing similar waiver requests," said Keith Mueller, interim dean of the UI College of Public Health. "How quickly other states would jump in depends on what whether Congress moves fairly quickly on market reforms." (Modern Healthcare)
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Peek-Asa discusses lack of data on gun violence

CPH Professor Corinne Peek-Asa recently spoke about a study she published that looks into who pays for gun violence. "[F]irearms injuries tracking is based on a code that allows different types of weapons to be identified. Most of them were coded as 'we don’t know' what type of firearm was used. So, it's problematic that we aren't collecting this information. It really limits what we are able to learn from the data set." (Iowa Public Radio)
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Janssen offers farm safety reminders

Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, recently talked about farm safety in light of a recent grain bin death in Waterloo. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Long hours on farm equipment can cause muscle fatigue

Time spent operating farm machinery can cause muscle fatigue and increase your risk of other injuries, even though it doesn’t seem like you’re exerting yourself. Operating nearly any farm vehicle causes the driver to experience Whole Body Vibration (WBV), which occurs when the shaking motion of the vehicle is transferred to the body of the operator. Back pain is one common ailment linked to WBV. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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CPH faculty sign Iowa Climate Statement detailing impact of increased humidity

The 2017 Iowa Climate Statement, which was released this week by the Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research, describes the impact increased humidity attributed to climate change has on people, animals, crops, and infrastructure. The statement was signed by 190 science faculty and researchers from 39 Iowa colleges and universities, including numerous CPH faculty. (Iowa Environmental Focus)
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Pentella weighs in on ways to avoid germs

Airplanes, laundry, hand sanitizer -- read about ways disease experts, including Michael Pentella, CPH clinical professor of epidemiology, avoid picking up and spreading germs. (Reader's Digest)
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Field comments on EPA’s radon action level

About one out of every 15 homes in the country, or nearly 7 percent, has elevated levels of radon, according to the EPA. Though it's the standard used in most radon research, the EPA's 4 pCi/L action level is actually much higher than what's safe for humans to be around, said William Field, a professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and one of the country's top radon researchers. "If it was truly health-based, the action level would be 0.4," Field said. (PressConnects)
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Safety Watch: Simple mistake means shortcut to ER

Stephanie Leonard, an industrial hygienist at the UI, shares her "oh-no-it’s-happening-this-is-going-to-be-bad-what-a-stupid-mistake” story about a fall from a ladder that ended in a broken wrist. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Ward writes about scalability of telehealth

Telehealth can be a virtual solution to reaching rural residents with health care, but its integration into mainstream medicine is taking longer than expected. CPH Professor Marcia Ward is one of five leaders working to advance telehealth for rural areas who recently shared their thoughts on the changes needed to make telehealth common practice. (The Rural Monitor)
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Program introduces underrepresented students to health professions

The UI Summer Health Professions Education Program is a six-week summer program to promote underrepresented students in the health professions. Eighty students are participating at the UI and are introduced to basic science classes and opportunities in the Carver College of Medicine and the Colleges of Dentistry, Pharmacy, and Public Health. (Daily Iowan)
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Thorne: Rural areas face environmental challenges

In an article about environmental challenges in rural areas associated with coal mining, fracking, and climate change, CPH Professor Peter Thorne says rural areas face infrastructure challenges around increased rainfall and flooding. “The ditches and small creeks [in these areas] were not set up to accommodate those levels of water flow,” he says. “Roads can flood; evacuations will be made more difficult; emergency responders might not be able to get through to people.” (Governing)
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CPH researchers help evaluate Johnson County’s Community ID

Johnson County's Community ID -- one of the first county-issued photo IDs in the nation -- recently marked its second anniversary. Over the past two years, an evaluation team spoke with hundreds of Johnson County ID applicants through the Community ID Evaluation. The evaluation was a joint project of the Center for Worker Justice, the Johnson County Auditor’s Office, and the University of Iowa College of Public Health. The CPH researchers included Barbara Baquero, Marlén Mendoza, Nicole Novak, Xiomara Santana, and Rosamond Smith. (Press-Citizen)
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Mueller discusses rural health care at Georgia task force meeting

Keith Mueller, CPH interim dean and professor of health management and policy, recently spoke at a meeting of Georgia’s Health Care Reform Task Force. He highlighted new ways to rethink how to increase health care access to rural communities, since so many rural areas have seen hospital closings in recent years. (The Tifton Gazette)
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UI researchers find brain region that affects drug use habits

University of Iowa researchers have identified a brain region involved in cocaine addiction. The findings could lead to targeted drugs or improved behavioral treatments for substance addiction, including opioid dependency. The research team included MPH student Wensday Worth.
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Curry comments on health education to prevent CVD in healthy people

Behavioral counseling provides positive but modest benefits for preventing cardiovascular disease (CVD) in adults without risk factors, a final recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force states. "The Task Force encourages primary care clinicians to talk to their patients about eating healthy and physical activity, and if they are interested and motivated to make lifestyle changes, offer and refer them to counseling," task force vice chair Susan Curry, PhD, said. Curry is interim executive vice president and provost of the University of Iowa, where she also serves as a distinguished professor of health management and policy in the College of Public Health. (Medscape)
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Columbus Junction schools will seek more information on PCB study

Responding to a University of Iowa study that found PCBs in Columbus Junction schools, Superintendent Gary Benda said Friday that his district will seek more information before it takes action. Peter Thorne, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, was involved with the study and said PCBs are likely present in other school districts as well. "The only reason that we found PCBs in these schools is because we studied them,” he said. “Probably every school in Iowa has PCBs to some extent. It’s a matter of the levels that are present — older schools have higher levels.” (Muscatine Journal)
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Kaskie serving as congressional fellow in D.C.

Brian Kaskie, CPH associate professor of health management and policy, has been in Washington, D.C., since November as part of the American Political Science Association’s congressional fellow program. With his expertise in Medicaid, Medicare, and caring for the elderly, he is assigned to the majority staff of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging, which is chaired by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine. (Press-Citizen)
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Ryckman featured on UI research banners

Fifty-one banners on display in the Old Capitol Mall/University Capitol Center through July tell the stories of University of Iowa researchers, innovators, and those with extraordinary academic pursuits, including Kelli Ryckman, associate professor of epidemiology and pediatrics. (Lab Link)
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UI researchers conduct largest survey yet of PCBs in schools

New research from the University of Iowa shows that polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), chemicals known to cause cancer in humans, are present in older schools and that the source of the PCBs is most likely outdated building materials, such as window caulking and light ballasts. The multi-year study by the Iowa Superfund Research Program at the UI is the largest yet to examine airborne PCBs in schools. CPH Professor Peter Thorne is the principal investigator of the study.
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Mueller comments on rural hospitals, proposed Medicaid cuts

Proposed Medicaid cuts would make things harder for Iowa’s rural hospitals and could jeopardize access to health care for rural residents. "If [the proposed changes] were to happen, the concern on the part of providers including small rural hospitals is that the payment to them would be reduced to stay within whatever that per capita rate is set to be each year," says Keith Mueller, UI College of Public Health interim dean. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Hamann works to understand bicycle fatalities

A recent radio segment discussed Department of Epidemiology associate Cara Hamann’s research into the increasing number of bicycle fatalities in Iowa. (Iowa Environmental Focus)
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Invest Health grant aims to reduce health disparities

In 2016, Iowa City received a $60,000 Invest Health grant in order to explore ways to reduce disparities in asthma, depression, and behavioral health in children and adults living in low-income households. The project's team members include Vickie Miene, interim director of the Institute of Public Health Research and Policy based in the College of Public Health. (Little Village)
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Robinson comments on underassessment of women’s cardiovascular disease risk

Women's fight against cardiovascular disease faces challenges as most women underestimate the deadliness of the disease and most physicians give it lower priority and feel unprepared to assess risk, a new survey finds. The Women's Heart Alliance plans a national awareness campaign, notes Jennifer Robinson, CPH professor of epidemiology. "But to successfully improve risk factor control, awareness efforts must be coupled with quality clinician education and implementation programs," she says. (MedPage Today)
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Janssen, Peek-Asa talk about summertime safety

On a recent edition of River to River, Ben Kieffer talked with researchers, injury prevention specialists, and medical professionals about avoiding injury and death when dealing with fireworks and other summertime hazards. CPH professors Brandi Janssen and Corinne Peek-Asa took part in the discussion. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Safety Watch: Expect the unexpected when handling livestock

Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, provides safety tips and reminders for handling livestock, especially as fair season approaches. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Mueller speaks at Iowa Ideas Health Care Symposium

Keith Mueller, CPH interim dean, recently spoke at the Iowa Ideas Health Care Symposium in Cedar Rapids. He discussed the role of telemedicine in expanding access and specialty care to rural areas as well as changing payment and delivery models taking place within the health care system. (The Gazette)
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Video: Story’s work, CPH global health initiatives featured

Will Story, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, discusses his path to global public health and the UI College of Public Health's biggest strengths and challenges in global community health. (CORE Group newsletter)
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Research: Farmers still take own lives at a high rate

The number of suicides among farmers and farmworkers in the United States has remained stubbornly high since the end of the 1980s farm crisis, much higher than workers in many other industries, according to a new study from the University of Iowa. (Iowa Now)
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Study examines link between obesity, food container chemical substitutes

A new study from the University of Iowa shows that a pair of common chemicals that manufacturers use to make plastic food containers, water bottles, and other consumer products do not contribute to obesity to the extent of the chemical it's replacing.
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RUPRI cited in article on leveraging public-private funds to improve health

An article on how federal agencies and philanthropy groups are partnering to improve health quotes the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI), which describes care coordination as "a deliberate and planned approach to meeting the diverse needs of patients and families, and when done well, it is built into policies, procedures, staffing, services, and communication systems." (The Rural Monitor)
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RUPRI panel comments on proposed antibiotic stewardship rule

As "superbugs" gain traction, health care regulatory and accreditation agencies are introducing new clinical standards, such as antibiotic stewardship programs specifically designed to help decrease resistance problems. The Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) Health Panel recently wrote a public comment on a proposed CMS rule, stating that they believe "the estimated costs are under-represented.” (The Rural Monitor)
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Researchers: Why companies need to address workplace violence, bullying

Better communication, support for victims, and increased training are the keys to reduce workplace bullying and violence, according to two researchers in Iowa. While active shooter situations receive more attention, those are not the only, or the most common, types of workplace violence, said Carri Casteel, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health, who has studied workplace violence prevention. “The thing that gets highlighted in the media a lot are the types of violence that tend to be rarer,” Casteel said. (The Gazette)
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Survey finds workplaces aren’t well-prepared for violence

A survey from the University of Iowa shows that many companies have significant gaps in how they prepare for the potential for workplace violence, even though more businesses are taking the possibility for such a threat seriously. Carri Casteel, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health, says she knows of no other survey of this type having been conducted, so it provides a baseline for future research into what businesses are doing to address the issue. (Iowa Now)
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Askelson comments on closing of Planned Parenthood health centers

Recent legislation will close four of 12 Planned Parenthood health centers in Iowa by the end of June. Natoshia Askelson, CPH assistant professor, said Planned Parenthood’s contraceptive capabilities, same-day appointments, and sliding scale fees make it a unique part of the public health safety net. “We have federally qualified health centers, Planned Parenthood, free clinics,” she said. “These are the [providers] who are supporting to make sure people don’t completely fall and crash to the ground. That takes a big piece out.” (The Atlantic)
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Study shows that tele-emergency services save patients money

Patients in small towns can save thousands of dollars in health care costs if their local rural hospital is part of a tele-emergency room network, according to a new study from the University of Iowa. “Our study’s primary goal was to identify the amount of money saved in situations when remote emergency medicine professionals can provide the necessary insight to help local providers avoid transfer of the patient,” says study co-author Nabil Natafgi, research associate and adjunct assistant professor of health management and policy. Marcia Ward, professor and director of the Rural Telehealth Research Center at the UI, served as senior author on the paper. (Iowa Now)
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Hamann works to improve the safety of bicyclists

Cara Hamann, an associate with the CPH Department of Epidemiology, has authored several studies on bicycle safety. "I am working to close the gap between research and policy. The research itself is also innovative. For example, we have conducted some analyses examining charges and convictions related to bicycle- and pedestrian-motor vehicle crashes, which I have not seen elsewhere,” says Hamann. “We have also been able to learn a lot about bicycling risk exposure and driver behavior by incorporating technology into our research.” (Big Ten Network)
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Thorne comments on EPA science advisory board changes

CPH Professor Peter Thorne is currently chair of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board. He said he would be concerned if members finishing their first three-year term on the board were denied reappointment when their terms expire in September. “It would be a deviation from a process that we have followed for decades and that has worked very well," he said. (Press-Citizen)
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Study finds low-carb diet may reduce risk of postmenopausal weight gain

In an analysis of dietary patterns of postmenopausal women using data from the Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study, researchers found that those who consumed the fewest carbohydrates had a significantly reduced risk of gaining 10 percent of their body weight over an eight-year period, whereas those who consumed the least fat had a significantly increased risk of gaining more than 10 percent of their body weight over that time period. The research team included Linda Snetselaar, CPH professor of epidemiology. (Baylor College of Medicine)
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Gilbert studies how problem drinkers quit without help

Paul Gilbert, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, is studying people in eastern Iowa whose drinking was causing so many problems in their lives that they quit, but did so without entering a clinical treatment program. Gilbert is conducting the study as preparation for his next major research project, which will explore different paths to recovery. (Iowa Now)
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UI College of Public Health, Cornell College create new dual degree

The University of Iowa and Cornell College are teaming up to give students more opportunities, enhancing their prospects for careers and graduate study with a new dual-degree program in public health. Cornell students enrolling in this program will earn a bachelor’s degree from Cornell and a master’s degree from the University of Iowa in just five years, instead of the typical six years.
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Thorne discusses proposed changes that would affect scientific input at EPA

CPH Professor Peter Thorne currently chairs the Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board. He recently discussed proposed changes to the board that would affect scientific input. "I would hate to see a board that didn’t have sufficient representation from academia, because academicians bring a level of scholarly rigor to this that is, I think, probably the highest level." (The Chronicle of Higher Education)
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Panel talks about treating violence as a public health problem

Host Ben Kieffer talks with Dr. Leana Wen, health commissioner for the city of Baltimore; Carlettea Knox Seymour, president of Iowans for Gun Safety; Corinne Peek-Asa, director of the UI Injury Prevention Research Center; and Binnie LeHew, coordinator for Injury and Violence Prevention at the Iowa Department of Public Health, in a conversation about programs underway in Iowa that are combating violence, using some of what’s been done in Baltimore as an example. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Janssen comments on tractor crashes

A story about tractor-motor vehicle crashes in Iowa mentions several UI studies, including one that will mount cameras on tractors to record and observe drivers’ behaviors as they approach from behind. “Rural roads are actually getting busier, as there’s more agri-tourism and as suburban development pushes its way” into farm country, said Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health. (Des Moines Register)
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Curry: Private support for higher education is critical

In a guest opinion piece, Sue Curry, UI interim executive vice president and provost, writes that in an environment of steadily decreasing public resources, private support for higher education is more critical than ever. "As dean of the UI College of Public Health, I witnessed — and our students experienced — the transformative power of philanthropy. Private giving supported student scholarships that helped ensure the successful launch of a new undergraduate program in public health. Private giving also enabled our faculty to develop a curriculum to meet 21st-century challenges and deliver it using the latest methods and technologies." (Daily Iowan)
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Thorne comments on March for Science

Thousands of people around the world gathered to March for Science on April 22. “Supporting the scientific community on Earth Day centers on the recognition that through rigorously peer-reviewed, replicated, and ever-refined research, scientists have shown us what human activity has done to alter the Earth’s climate and damage ecosystems,” said Peter Thorne, CPH professor and head of occupational and environmental health, who also serves as chairman of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board. (Daily Iowan)
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Program teaches health care providers business and leadership skills

The UI has started a new program to provide business and leadership education and training services to clinicians, managers, and other health care leaders across the state. The Office of Healthcare Leadership Education (OHLE) will help health care providers better understand the economic forces at work in their practices. The OHLE is a partnership among the UI’s Tippie College of Business, Carver College of Medicine, and College of Public Health. (Iowa Now)
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BLN hosts ‘The Economic Health of Business’ regional summit

The college's Business Leadership Network (BLN), in partnership with Indian Hills Community College and Ottumwa-area community leaders, hosted a day-long summit in Ottumwa with business and community leaders to identify and develop low-cost strategies for workplace health and safety that can be used by employers and community organizations. (KYOU)
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Gilbert cited in op-ed calling for resources to treat addiction

In a guest opinion piece, UISG president Rachel Zuckerman calls for more action to treat addiction. She quotes Paul Gilbert, CPH assistant professor, who says the national opioid crisis is an opportunity to leverage public concern and push for more support for resources and policies that combat addiction. (Daily Iowan)
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Discussion focuses on violence as a public health issue

Violence and public health were brought together in a panel discussion held Tuesday night at the College of Public Health Building. “As an emergency physician, I have to say unequivocally that violence is a health issue,” said panelist Leana Wen, health commissioner of the City of Baltimore. Wen also stated that many people believe violence is primarily a law enforcement and public safety issue. “Public safety, though, has to work hand in hand with public health,” she said. (Daily Iowan)
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Cook discusses Ponseti Method to treat clubfoot

Tom Cook, professor emeritus of occupational and environmental health and director of global operations for Ponseti International, recently discussed clubfoot and its treatment with the Ponseti Method. The noninvasive technique uses a series gentle manipulations and plaster casts to correct the condition. (Cedar Falls Community Television)
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Symposium addresses LGBT health needs

The new LGBT Advocates for Public Health Equity student organization hosted its first symposium for public health awareness on April 15. “The next generation of health providers is coming from here, so it’s important that we discuss how to provide the health care the LGBTQ population needs,” said Lauren Pass, a founder of the organization. (Daily Iowan)
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Mueller discusses benefits of telehealth

For rural hospitals, telehealth can make otherwise faraway services accessible to people where they live, said Keith Mueller, director of the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis at the University of Iowa. “We can, in effect, bring the provider to the community without physically doing so,” Mueller said. “Even in urban areas, people want more and more convenience in how we receive our services. Here we are talking more about necessity.” (Politico)
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Casteel comments on rising opioid-related deaths in Iowa

At a recent Linn County Public Health panel on opioid abuse, Carri Casteel with the University of Iowa College of Public Health confirmed prescription opioid overdose deaths are increasing across the country and the state of Iowa. "In terms of Linn County, we have observed that opioid-involved drug overdose deaths tend to be on the high side in Linn County relative to some of the other counties in the state," Casteel said. (Iowa Public Radio)
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UI, Iowa Medical Society to teach business of health care

The Iowa Medical Society and the University of Iowa’s Tippie College of Business have teamed up to give the state’s physicians a crash course in business. The two groups, along with the UI’s Carver College of Medicine and College of Public Health, have put together a curriculum covering the basics of how to run a health care business. (The Gazette)
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New report says wind power saves Iowans on energy costs

A new Iowa Policy Project report claims Iowa’s electricity prices, which are lower than the national average, can be attributed to the state’s growing wind industry. David Osterberg, CPH clincal professor of occupational and environmental health and Iowa Policy Project’s lead environmental researcher, said he believes Iowa’s nearly two-decade investment in wind energy — about 36 percent of the electricity generated in Iowa now comes from wind — has played a huge role in the state’s lower energy costs. (The Gazette)
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BLN community grant helps Centerville YMCA purchase exercise bike

The YMCA in Centerville, Iowa, recently purchased a new recumbent cross-trainer bicycle with the support of a Business Leadership Network (BLN) community grant. The bicycle will benefit those in need of physical therapy. (Daily Iowegian)
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Iowa Cancer Report focuses on liver cancer

Since 1991, the University of Iowa College of Public Health has released an annual Cancer in Iowa report while also focusing on a specific cancer. This year’s focus was on liver cancer. “One of the reasons we decided to feature [liver cancer] is because it’s increasing so rapidly and because there’s something that people can do to prevent it from happening, which is to get checked for hepatitis C,” said Mary Charlton, CPH assistant professor of epidemiology. (Daily Iowan)
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Askelson comments on proposed defunding of Planned Parenthood

In Iowa, House Republicans want to scrap the state’s family-planning program and redraft it to exclude Planned Parenthood from the list of eligible providers. Natoshia Askelson, CPH assistant professor, is “very concerned” about that. “[Iowa is] not in a position right now where we can afford things the federal government would pick up the tab for otherwise.” (The Atlantic)
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Mueller named interim dean of College of Public Health

Kevin Kregel, University of Iowa acting executive vice president and provost, has appointed Keith Mueller interim dean of the College of Public Health, effective April 1. Current dean Sue Curry is stepping into the role of UI interim executive vice president and provost. (Iowa Now)
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Askelson comments on school start times

Iowa City parents have mixed opinions about the School District’s start and end times: elementary schools now start at 7:55 a.m., and junior high and high schools start at 8:50 a.m. Natoshia Askelson, UI assistant professor of community and behavioral health, said the reason high-school students stay up late is because of changes in hormones and circadian rhythm. “In order for them to get the full nine hours that they need, they of course need to sleep later in the morning,” she said. (Daily Iowan)
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Hamann studies and advocates for improved bicycle safety

In Iowa, 340 riders were injured as a result of vehicle collisions in 2016; eight were killed. Cara Hamann wants to change that. An associate in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, Hamann is spending the year as a policy fellow in the college’s Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy learning how to use her bike safety research to influence public policy and increase rider safety. (Iowa Now)
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2017 Cancer in Iowa report issued

An estimated 6,200 Iowans will die from cancer in 2017, according to a new report released March 22 by the State Health Registry of Iowa, based in the University of Iowa College of Public Health. Lung cancer will continue to be the most common cause of cancer death for both males and females and will be responsible for about 1,670—or approximately one out of every four—cancer deaths in Iowa, according to “Cancer in Iowa: 2017.”
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Thorne comments on proposed EPA bill

A bill--the EPA Science Advisory Board (SAB) Reform Act--is currently wending its way through Congress. The Act would “have a chilling effect on attracting the best and highly productive scientists,” says Peter Thorne from the University of Iowa, who currently chairs the EPA Science Advisory Board. (The Atlantic)
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UI to research vector-borne diseases

The University of Iowa is among a group of institutions in a new federally funded center to counter and research vector-borne diseases. The Upper Midwestern Center of Excellence in Vector-Borne Diseases is a collection of five states that use a $10 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to research vector-borne diseases. Christine Petersen, associate professor of epidemiology and director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases at the University of Iowa, will lead the UI’s involvement. (Daily Iowan)
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Fluharty comments on retaining young people in rural areas

To survive and thrive, rural communities must figure out how to retain residents -- particularly young people and families. "If you can’t retain young people, it’s over,” says Charles Fluharty, president of the Rural Policy Research Institute at the University of Iowa. “We need to create dynamic, expressive, culturally diverse communities in which they want to raise their kids.” (New Republic)
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Community invited to watch ‘Newtown,’ discuss violence prevention

In a letter to the editor, Dean Sue Curry and Professor Corinne Peek-Asa invite the community to a free public screening of the documentary film “Newtown” March 3 at the Englert Theatre at 6 p.m. The film provides an occasion for communities to discuss the burden of violence on affected individuals as well as our communities. Following the film, a panel of experts from law enforcement, threat assessment, and school administration will discuss the film and opportunities to prevent violent incidents from occurring. (The Gazette)
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Sue Curry named UI interim provost

University of Iowa President Bruce Harreld has appointed Sue Curry interim executive vice president and provost beginning April 1, 2017. Curry has served as dean of the University of Iowa College of Public Health and as a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Health Management and Policy since 2008. She replaces P. Barry Butler, who was recently named president of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Fla. The College of Public Health will select an interim dean.
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Peek-Asa takes part in panel on childhood trauma

Although a child’s environment might be traumatic, resiliency is the key to a successful future, according to a panel of experts interviewed on WorldCanvass. Corinne Peek-Asa, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, noted there is a strong relationship between early deaths and adverse childhood experiences. “[We need to] address housing and poverty issues,” she said. “[We need to] find children with [these] issues and build [their] resiliency.” (Daily Iowan)
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Thorne helps separate climate change facts from fiction

Peter Thorne, CPH professor and head of occupational and environmental health and chairman of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board, recently sat down to discuss some of the key arguments swirling around climate change. (Little Village)
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UI study suggests youth flag football may not be safer than tackle

University of Iowa researchers report that the results of a study of injury rates in youth football leagues did not show flag football to be safer than tackle football. The research team included Joe Cavanaugh, professor of biostatistics, and Benjamin Reidle, a PhD student in biostatistics. (Iowa Now)
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Small steps affect beginning farmers’ safety

Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, shares the story of a young farmer who, in a rush, neglected to put on a pair of safety glasses before working with barbed wire on a fenceline. The wire came loose and struck him in the left eye, causing several months of missed worked and costing him many thousands of dollars in healthcare costs. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Change in marital status post-menopause may impact health

For women who marry later in life, a few extra pounds may accompany their nuptials, a new study suggests. On the other hand, older women who go through a divorce or separation may lose weight and see some positive changes in their health, according to the research, which is forthcoming in the Journal of Women's Health. Linda Snetselaar, CPH professor of epidemiology, is a co-author of the study. (EurekAlert)
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UI study evaluates safety of drugs used to dramatically lower levels of bad cholesterol

Heart disease patients taking an investigational class of drugs to achieve very low levels of cholesterol do not experience an increase in adverse events, including memory impairment or nervous system disorders, but may have an increased risk of cataracts, according to a study led by UI College of Public Health researcher Jennifer Robinson.
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Resettling in Iowa: Helping refugees get on their feet

Will Story, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, recently participated in a radio program featuring representatives from organizations that help refugees settle in their new homes. "Most of my work happens outside the United States, sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. I do a lot of work related to maternal-child health and helping moms and kids get access to health care. Then I realized there are people in our own community, here in Johnson county, who are struggling to get access to health care who are coming from some of these countries where I work," Story said. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Askelson comments on proposed defunding of Planned Parenthood

Iowa Statehouse Republicans have pledged to halt all state funding to Planned Parenthood, defunding a program that has proved successful, according to state health care experts. “They are trying to get rid of a program that has been shown to be effective and save money ... There’s a lot of evidence this program works in Iowa,” said Natoshia Askelson, a CPH assistant professor who also works with the UI Public Policy Center. (Waterloo Courier)
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Story comments on GOLDrush crowdfunding success

Just before the winter holidays, the first round of GOLDrush crowdfunding concluded with two of three pilot projects exceeding their $10,000 goal. One of those projects, led by CPH Assistant Professor Will Story, aims to improve health access for Congolese refugees in Iowa. “In addition to reaching our fundraising goal, the GOLDrush campaign exceeded my expectations by helping me to establish connections with likeminded individuals across campus," Story says. (UI OVPRED)
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Study finds most marijuana medicinal benefits are inconclusive

There is not enough research to reach conclusive judgments on whether marijuana can effectively treat most of the symptoms and diseases it is advertised as helping, according to a wide-ranging U.S. government study. More than 100 conclusions about the health effects of marijuana, including claims of both helpful and harmful effects, were evaluated by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. “There’s been an explosion of literature since 1999 … We reviewed thousands of abstracts,” said Robert Wallace, CPH professor of epidemiology and a member of the committee tasked with reviewing more than 10,000 studies. (The Guardian)
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More older Americans using cannabis, underscoring need for research

Cannabis use among older adults in the U.S. is on the rise, yet there is currently a lack of biomedical, clinical, and public health research to inform policy related to this trend, according to a new article by University of Iowa researchers. "Some older persons have responded to changing social and legal environments, and are increasingly likely to take cannabis recreationally," said lead author Brian Kaskie, CPH associate professor of health management and policy. "Other older persons are experiencing age-related health care needs and some take cannabis for symptom management, as recommended by a medical doctor." (Science Daily)
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UI announces new Campus Inclusion Team

The University of Iowa’s new Campus Inclusion Team will provide support, resources, and tools to help students respond to concerns of racial, ethnic, gender, intellectual, political, and religious bias on campus. MPH/PharmD student Jasmine Mangrum, vice president of the UI Graduate and Professional Student Government, was instrumental in helping create the team, which was a student-driven effort. (Iowa Now)
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Active Ottumwa’s Dog and Jog makes working out easier

The new year comes with plenty of opportunities to work off all those holiday treats. But when the mercury drops, working out isn't so popular. That’s were Active Ottumwa comes in. The research project offers free fitness programs to keep the community active each week. Tuesday’s event was Dog and Jog. Each week, the community is invited to meet at the Vanness Avenue entrance of the cemetery for a brisk jog with their dog or to just enjoy the company of others. (KTVO)
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BLN grants strengthen public health projects in seven Iowa communities

The College of Public Health's Business Leadership Network recently announced seven award recipients through the second year of its Community Grant Program. Read more about the projects, which include increasing awareness of mental health issues, new fitness equipment for seniors, reducing food insecurity and obesity, and more. (Multiple sources)
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More volunteering as teens leads to less illegal activity as adults

Teenagers who participate in volunteer activities may be less likely to get in trouble with the law when they become adults, according to a new UI study. Researchers in the UI College of Public Health found that teenagers who participated in volunteer activities on their own had 11 percent fewer illegal behaviors between the ages of 18 and 28 than teenagers who did not volunteer. (Iowa Now)
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Suicide rate among farmers at historic high

According to a recent CDC report, suicide rates for workers in the agricultural, fishing, and forestry industry are the highest of any other occupational group, exceeding rates in other high-risk populations, including veterans. The report notes there may be several underlying reasons for higher suicide rates in specific occupational groups, including job-related isolation, stressful environments, or home/work imbalance. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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RUPRI named one of four NEA Research Labs

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has announced the first projects funded through a new program, NEA Research Labs. The cross-sector projects supported through the program investigate how the arts contribute to positive outcomes for individuals and communities. The Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) at the University of Iowa's College of Public Health, in partnership with the organization Art of the Rural, has been named one of four NEA Research Labs.
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Executive Master of Health Administration program trains health care leaders

Greg Lehmann knew that if he wanted to advance in his field, he would need a broader background in health care administration. He was among the first 10 students from a variety of clinical and health care management backgrounds who graduated in August from the new University of Iowa Executive Master of Health Administration (EMHA) program. “The EMHA curriculum is case-based, interdisciplinary, and team-focused with the goal of preparing current health care professionals to move into leadership positions,” says Ian Montgomery, director of the EMHA program. (Iowa Now)
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Bear writes about his observations at Standing Rock

Sean Bear, training coordinator and senior research consultant with the National American Indian and Alaska Native Addiction Technology Transfer Center and a member of the Meskwaki Tribe in Iowa, recently wrote about his observations during a September visit to Standing Rock. (ATTC/NIATx blog)
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Osterberg says voluntary action not improving water quality

The League of Women Voters of Muscatine County hosted a discussion on water quality in Iowa Tuesday night, and a professor at the University of Iowa said voluntary action for Iowa farmers is not improving water quality. David Osterberg of the Iowa Policy Project, who is also a clinical professor in the UI Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, presented findings of studies and polls, and said he has seen little progress in reducing nitrate and phosphorous in the Mississippi River and Iowa waterways. (Muscatine Journal)
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Active Ottumwa offers free fitness classes

Active Ottumwa recently celebrated its third anniversary with an open house. The program offers free fitness classes including walking groups, Zumba, aquatic classes, Tai Chi, and more. Looking ahead, Active Ottumwa is planning to add more classes. (KTVO)
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Active Ottumwa trains residents to be physical activity leaders

Active Ottumwa, a University of Iowa research program, is training people in Ottumwa to lead fitness activities with other residents. "We've increased our presence in the community by having six 'physical activity leaders' trained," said Barbara Baquero, head of Active Ottumwa. "We're collaborating with Quincy Place Mall, the YMCA, Market on Main, and Ottumwa Parks and Rec." (Ottumwa Courier)
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Curry takes part in Reading of Names honoring AIDS victims

Various University of Iowa student organizations and events highlighted the Nov. 29 to Dec. 2 IC Red Week, including the Reading of Names on Thursday to honor those who have passed away from HIV/AIDS. Speakers such as UI President Bruce Harreld, Dean of the College of Public Health Sue Curry, and UI Student Government President Rachel Zuckerman read names. (Daily Iowan)
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Thorne comments on EPA fracking study

Officials of the Environmental Protection Agency last year made critical changes at the eleventh hour to a five-year scientific study of hydraulic fracturing's effect on drinking water. The changes, later criticized by scientists for lacking evidence, played down the risk of pollution that can result from fracking. CPH Professor Peter Thorne chairs the EPA Science Advisory Board, which rebuked the EPA's conclusion of no "widespread systemic impacts." (APMreports)
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Doctors should counsel even low-risk patients on heart health

Primary care doctors should offer counseling about healthy lifestyle habits to prevent heart disease -- even to adults who have a low or average risk of developing heart troubles, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force advises. "For people who are not at increased risk for heart disease, counseling on healthy eating and physical activity may help prevent heart disease for some people," task force vice chair Susan Curry said in a panel news release. Curry is dean of the University of Iowa College of Public Health. (UPI)
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New Policy Fellows will boost public health research, policy

The Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy recently named three Policy Fellows who will work to translate public health research into practice and policy. CPH Associate Professor Kelli Ryckman was interested in the program because she wanted to get more experience and familiarity with policy work. “For me, it was being able to translate some of the research that I have been involved in for a long time and improving care and making policy changes,” she said. (Daily Iowan)
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Survey finds rise in use of child safety restraints in vehicles

Since 1985, Iowa has conducted an annual child-safety-restraint study which began with a state code change that required all children under the age of 3 to be protected by safety restraints when in a vehicle. “When the annual study started, the restraint use in Iowa was less than 50 percent for all ages,” said Cara Hamann, an associate in the UI Department of Epidemiology. The most recent survey results showed compliance with 99 percent of children age 1 or younger, 93 percent of 2- to 5-year-olds, 93 percent of 6- to 13-year-olds, and 84 percent of 14- to 17-year-olds. (Daily Iowan)
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Fluharty discusses the future of jobs, rural communities

At the inaugural Iowa Rural Development Summit held recently, Chuck Fluharty, president and CEO of the Rural Policy Research Institute, noted that in the next generation, jobs are going to come to the people instead of vice versa. He added that rural America should be ready to capitalize on the shift. (Des Moines Register)
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Ayyagari interviewed about study on Social Security, cognitive function

Padmaja Ayyagari, assistant professor of health management and policy, was recently interviewed about her study on Social Security benefits and cognitive function. “We find that people who received higher Social Security benefits, they end up with better cognitive function. And maybe more interestingly, we also find that this improvement is clinically meaningful, that it's not just a small change,” she said. (NPR)
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Fluharty comments on small towns, rural America

In a story about rural America and the presidential election, Chuck Fluharty, president of the Rural Policy Research Institute at the University of Iowa, said that small towns don't depend much on farmers anymore — yet farmers need their struggling rural towns. Farmers "are worrying about that car dealer, and they're worrying about that bank, and they're worrying about the small insurance company, and they're hoping to God that they don't lose their school," he says. (NPR)
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Katz discusses intersection of public health and journalism

Jonathan M. Katz, the College of Public Health's first journalist-in-residence, delivered a special presentation as part of the college's inaugural Global Public Health Week. Throughout his presentation, Katz discussed the effect that the media can have on the conversations held by the public about major social and health issues. (Daily Iowan)
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Study finds most Iowans follow child safety seat law

A study by the University of Iowa Injury Prevention Research Center finds 99 percent of Iowans are taking the proper steps to protect babies in cars, while teenagers lag behind when it comes to seatbelt use. Cara Hamann, who led the study, says teenagers from 14 to 17 years old have the lowest rate of seatbelt use at 84 percent. (Radio Iowa)
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Producers should take precautions against hydrogen sulfide exposure

Livestock producers should take precautions against hydrogen sulfide exposure (H2S) during manure handling. When manure is disturbed or agitated, H2S is released into the air and can reach deadly levels within seconds, writes Stephanie Leonard, a UI industrial hygienist and safety specialist. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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UI study: New lights, reflectors could cut farm-vehicle accidents

University of Iowa College of Public Health researchers found that Midwestern traffic accidents involving farm vehicles would drop by more than 50 percent if state policies required more lighting and reflectors on the equipment. (Des Moines Business Record)
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Study looks at medicine’s effectiveness in preventing migraines in children

Migraine medicine has been prescribed the same for both children and adults alike for years, but new evidence shows this medication does not work well for improving children’s health. The University of Iowa and the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital joined together on a study focusing on how usual prescribed migraine medication for children improved headache symptoms. (Daily Iowan)
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BLN, UI President Harreld visit Mason City

The UI College of Public Health's Business Leadership Network (BLN) held a community forum in Mason City on Nov. 4. Faculty and staff from the College of Public Health and UI President Bruce Harreld met with community leaders in health care, business, government, and education to discuss health topics.
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CPH researchers participate in children’s migraine study

A study generating national attention that questions the use of certain drugs to help children suffering from migraine headaches included work from the University of Iowa’s College of Public Health's Clinical Trials Statistical and Data Management Center. The study found that two pills frequently prescribed to children to prevent migraines were no more effective than a placebo. (Iowa Now)
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Study finds Tdap vaccine safe for pregnant women

The Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis) vaccine is safe for pregnant women who hope to pass their immunity on to their newborns, a new study shows. The vaccine does not appear to cause birth defects or any other major health problems, including microcephaly, for a developing fetus. Paul Romitti, CPH professor of epidemiology, is a co-author on the study. (UPI)
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Community health forum set for Mason City

A community forum on public health will be held 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Nov. 4 at the North Iowa Regional Conference Center, 9 N. Federal Ave., Mason City. Faculty from the University of Iowa College of Public Health will meet with North Iowa health, business, education, and community leaders to discuss local health concerns and initiatives. (Globe Gazette)
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Media roundup: More lighting on farm vehicles reduces crashes

Traffic crashes involving combines and tractors would decrease by more than half if state policies required more lighting and reflection on those farm vehicles, according to a new study from the University of Iowa College of Public Health. “Many drivers misjudge the time and distance it takes to slow down when they approach a farm vehicle from behind. Better lighting would give them more time,” said Marizen Ramirez, lead author of the study. (The Gazette and Multiple Sources)
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Study finds simple changes could reduce farm equipment crashes

More lighting and refection devices on farm vehicles could decrease crashes involving those vehicles by more than 50 percent, according to a new study by the University of Iowa and the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health. (KCRG)
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Fluharty comments on the arts and rural America

In an effort to reinvigorate rural communities, some leaders are experimenting with art as a tool to fuel economic development. “You need arts in rural America so that the next generation wants to come there and live,” said Charles Fluharty, president and CEO of the Rural Policy Research Institute, a public policy institute located at the UI College of Public Health. “If you do not build vibrant, inclusive, diverse places for young people, they’re not going to raise their families there." (Huffington Post)
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Casteel takes part in panel addressing workplace violence

Carri Casteel, CPH associate professor of occupational and environmental health, recently spoke on a panel called "Understanding Workplace Violence – On the Job, On the Lookout" at the 2016 National Safety Council Congress & Expo. (Safety + Health)
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Video: Peek-Asa discusses farm vehicle traffic accidents

Corinne Peek-Asa, professor of occupational and environmental health, discusses a new study that suggests more stringent state policies on lighting could cut the number of farm vehicle traffic accidents.
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Better lighting, marking on farm vehicles could reduce crashes

A new study from the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health has found that traffic accidents involving farm vehicles in the Midwest would decrease by more than 50 percent if state policies required more lighting and reflection on those vehicles. (Iowa Now)
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Iowa researchers endorse conservation efforts to combat climate change

More than 180 Iowa science researchers and faculty from 38 Iowa colleges and universities, including more than 15 faculty associated with the University of Iowa College of Public Health, have endorsed the Iowa Climate Statement 2016 and efforts to expand voluntary, incentive‐based programs and initiatives for farmers, ranchers, and forest owners to confront human-caused global warming. (CGRER)
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Health and safety critical to farm legacy

CPH Dean Sue Curry recently co-authored an article for National Farm Safety Week, which this year had the theme “Farm Safety: A Legacy to Be Proud Of.” The authors wrote: "While fatalities clearly affect a farm’s legacy, so do the less catastrophic injuries and diseases that tend to come with farm work. ... The good news is that farm injuries, illnesses, and fatalities are almost always preventable." (Iowa Farmer Today)
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We Are Phil campaign features new funds

Phil Week, dedicated to promoting philanthropy on campus, is all about giving faculty and staff a chance to raise money for the University of Iowa as a whole. Research assistant Kim Merchant, the co-head of the College of Public Health We Are Phil Committee, said there are two funds the college is highlighting this year: Dollars for Scholars and Staff Professional Development Fund. “Both funds are new, and we hope they are of interest to faculty and staff as they make their decision to give,” she said. (Daily Iowan)
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Askelson discusses student-led Smarter Lunchrooms

Teenagers at several schools across the country are working together with school nutrition staff to make changes to the school cafeteria. “The Smarter Lunchroom movement has been implemented across the country, but we are enhancing the process by bringing students in from the start,” says Natoshia Askelson, assistant professor of community and behavioral health, about a project she's leading in Iowa. (USDA Blog)
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Campo comments on need for student counseling services

The UI Faculty Council focused attention Tuesday on students' increasing use of the University Counseling Service. Shelly Campo, CPH associate professor and Faculty Council member, said she believes students have a hard time going from a very structured schedule to one that is less structured — specifically in terms of exams. “[The college transition] tends to be a major point of crisis,” she said. (Daily Iowan)
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Iowa ranks in top 20 for toxic air releases

Iowa ranks among the top 20 states nationally for annual emissions of harmful chemicals and greenhouse gases into the air, according to a new analysis of federal air quality data by the Center for Public Integrity. "We're dramatically changing the planet, and inviting huge humanitarian and public health crises for future generations," said CPH Professor Peter Thorne about greenhouse gas emissions. (Des Moines Register)
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Curry discusses the Working at Iowa survey

On Oct. 5, all employees at the University of Iowa will receive an email inviting them to take the Working at Iowa survey. According to Sue Curry, dean of the College of Public Health, taking the survey is both easy and important. “It helps us shine a light on our successes and gives us useful and actionable information about possible areas of improvement,” she says. (Iowa Now)
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UI receives CDC grant to study Zika virus, microcephaly

UI epidemiology professor Paul Romitti and pediatrics professor Daniel Bonthius will spearhead a $1 million, five-year grant from the CDC to study the Zika virus and microcephaly in fetuses. “The grant is to conduct public health surveillance for microcephaly and other conditions that may be related to maternal Zika virus infection during pregnancy,” Romitti said. (Daily Iowan)
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BLN seeks 2017 community grant project proposals

The University of Iowa College of Public Health and its Business Leadership Network (BLN) invite potential community partners to submit proposals that enhance the capacity of business enterprises in Iowa’s small- and medium-sized communities to improve the health and well-being of area residents. (Mason City Globe Gazette)
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Former IAAAP workers learn about medical screening, compensation program

Former nuclear weapons workers and their families learned about free health screenings and potential compensation opportunities during a town hall meeting Tuesday in Burlington. Hosted by the U.S. Department of Labor, representatives from the labor department, the Department of Energy, the Office of the Ombudsman, and UI College of Public Health discussed the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program and answered questions. (The Hawk Eye)
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Iowa organizations build on legacy of treating clubfoot

CPH professor emeritus Tom Cook was recently interviewed about the public health dimensions of clubfoot and the interdisciplinary collaboration involved in the UI approach to treating the condition. (Big Ten Network)
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Risky moves rise as farmers work fast, solo

In a recent farm safety column, UI industrial hygienist Steph Leonard asks, How often do you take a safety risk working alone that you wouldn’t take if someone was working alongside you? "We push our luck — and reinforce a bad habit — every time we 'get away with' taking a shortcut around safety," Leonard writes. "In the coming busy weeks, take the precautions when working alone that you expect your family, coworkers, or neighbors to take when you work together — not the short cuts." (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Thorne discusses role of environment in food allergies

CPH Professor Peter Thorne recently discussed new research that might help answer why food allergies are on the rise. "In the 1960s, mothers were boiling babies' bottles, and doing all this excessive sanitation. And now we think that we might have been doing more harm than good. Now we're telling kids to go play in the dirt because that might be the best thing for them," he says. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Group looks to attract next generation of rural leaders

A working group in Iowa wants to expand the role arts and cultural organizations can play to attract the next generation of rural leaders. The group will gather with other national rural leaders to share ideas, exchange plans, and build further connections during the Rural Creative Placemaking Summit, Oct. 12-14, 2016, on the University of Iowa campus. The effort is a component of the “Next Generation: The Future of Rural Arts and Culture Placemaking” collaboration between the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI), based in the UI College of Public Health, and Art of the Rural. (KMA Radio)
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Microbe-rich environments may trigger immune system, prevent asthma

Amish children growing up on farms that use animals have an immune response that may prevent asthma, according to a new study supported in part by NIEHS. "The study augments prior work showing the significant role our environmental exposures play in asthma," said CPH Professor Peter Thorne, a co-author of the study. "The big advance is how our study beautifully demonstrated the key role of innate immunity in asthma in two rural populations with similar genetics." (Environmental Factor)
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College of Public Health offers undergraduate public health major

The University of Iowa introduced public health as an undergraduate degree this fall because of its growing visibility and importance, said CPH Dean Sue Curry. The new undergraduate program will give students the opportunity for problem-based learning and service, a broad knowledge of public health, and also the softer skills, such as communication and working together, Curry said. (Daily Iowan)
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President Harreld highlights CPH undergrad programs

UI President Bruce Harreld welcomed students with a convocation speech that mentioned several exciting changes happening around campus, including new undergraduate programs in the College of Public Health. "Studying public health is an opportunity for our students to make tangible contributions to the well-being of Iowa, the nation, and the world: It is a way to reach people and to make their lives better, and I'm very proud that we're expanding our teaching efforts in such an impactful family of disciplines." (Iowa Now)
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Wright comments on financial losses of Medicaid management companies

Two of the three private companies managing Iowa’s Medicaid program say they’ve lost tens of millions of dollars so far, new reports filed with the state show. Brad Wright, a health policy professor at the University of Iowa, said the financial reports suggest Iowans using the new Medicaid plans are sicker, and using more health care, than experts predicted. (Des Moines Register)
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CPH welcomes new students

Autumn Moen is one of 32 first-year students (18 from Iowa) who enrolled directly into new Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Sciences programs offered by the UI College of Public Health. “I really like how the program brings the social sciences and the sciences together,” she said. Moen is among the thousands of students who began classes Monday at the University of Iowa. (Press-Citizen)
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Active Ottumwa offers free exercise opportunities

Thanks to Active Ottumwa, a research project conducted by the UI Prevention Research Center, dozens of free and fun exercise sessions are popping up all over Ottumwa. Barbara Baquero, principal investigator for Active Ottumwa, notes that Active Ottumwa began providing community programming in the summer of 2016. “This is free, and everybody has access to it,” Baquero says. (Ottumwa Radio)
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Janssen reminds farmers of safe grain handling

Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, recently wrote about the dangers of flowing grain and grain bin entrapments. Recent record harvests, increased on-farm storage capacity, and equipment that can move large quantities of grain efficiently and quickly have contributed to a rise in engulfments in the Grain Belt. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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CPH researchers conducting health survey in West Liberty

Researchers from the University of Iowa, in collaboration with the West Liberty Coalition, are conducting a random house-to-house survey in West Liberty. “Our hope is that the survey is a first step towards meaningful actions that will improve life in West Liberty,” says CPH Assistant Professor Paul Gilbert. The information will be used to plan future activities in the community. (West Liberty Index)
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Curry comments on public health’s bright future

Sue Curry, dean of the College of Public Health, sees a bright future for her field. The college has expanded its programming to include undergraduate degrees at a time when the number of careers in public health is predicted to increase significantly. "Faculty in the College of Public Health, working with colleagues across campus, have developed an exciting new curriculum that incorporates the very best of classroom instruction, along with experiential learning and service learning components," says Curry. (Iowa Now)
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O’Shaughnessy discusses bicycle safety

Patrick O’Shaughnessy, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, recently wrote a guest opinion in which he offered suggestions for both motorists and bicyclists to make biking safer. (Press-Citizen)
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Active Ottumwa helps get city on the move

Active Ottumwa, a community-based research project of the University of Iowa Prevention Research Center, is on a mission to get Ottumwa citizens moving more by offering free Zumba classes and a mall walking program. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Lynch comments on pesticide exposure

Mounting evidence shows chronic exposure to pesticides may increase risks for certain cancers and for other chronic illnesses. “Most of what we know about pesticides right now is that we see associations with disease. We don’t necessarily see all the criteria to say that it causes the disease,” said Charles Lynch, CPH professor of epidemiology. (The Gazette)
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UI helping Ottumwans become healthier

RAGBRAI riders aren’t the only ones getting exercise in Ottumwa. Ottumwans are becoming healthier and more active thanks to a community initiative launched last year by the University of Iowa Prevention Research Center. (Iowa Now)
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Reporting crimes to police reduces likelihood of future victimization

New research from the University of Iowa finds that individuals who report being victims of crime to police are less likely to become future victims of crime than those who do not report their initial experiences. (Iowa Now)
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CPH, RAGBRAI team up to help save the monarch butterfly

The UI College of Public Health is teaming up with RAGBRAI riders to help save the monarch butterfly. Riders will toss milkweed seed balls made by volunteers into roadside ditches and fields along the RAGBRAI route; milkweed is the only plant on which monarch butterflies will lay their eggs. (Iowa Now)
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Ramirez comments on Iowa’s anti-bullying law

Marizen Ramirez from the University of Iowa and her colleagues set out a few years ago to investigate the effectiveness of Iowa's anti-bullying law established in 2007. The team found that, beginning in 2010, reports of bullying started decreasing. "It does suggest that there is some trend towards decreases in bullying due to the presence of the law," Ramirez said, adding that more research is needed. (KGAN)
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Iowa’s private wells untested, unregulated

Iowa’s riskiest drinking water comes from private wells, experts say. “We have lots of regulations governing the safety of every other source, but private wells are pretty much unregulated,” said David Osterberg, a professor in the University of Iowa’s Department of Occupational and Environmental Health. Private wells are not only unregulated but often untested and untreated, added Peter Weyer, director of the UI Center for Health Effects of Environmental Contamination. (The Gazette)
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Take steps to make shared roadways safer

Read about precautions both farmers and motorists can take to help reduce highway crashes involving passenger vehicles and farm equipment. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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CPH student helps connect neighborhood to fresh produce

A plant most people try to rid from their driveways and sidewalks, purslane, is the best-selling item at the new Pheasant Ridge produce stand. The plant is popular with the large Sudanese population living in the Pheasant Ridge apartment complex. Julia Friberg (MPH '16), a recent grad from the College of Public Health, conducted a need assessment last semester that helped Local Foods Connection “identify the needs and desires of the community." (Daily Iowan)
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Researchers look at effects of higher minimum wage on infant birthweight

A new study suggests that increasing the minimum wage would lead to an increase in birthweight among babies born to women with low education. The research team included George Wehby, associate professor of health management and policy at the University of Iowa. (Washington Post)
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Field discusses use of radon baths in Ukraine

In Ukraine, people take baths in groundwater that’s naturally rich in radon to treat a host of medical conditions. But Bill Field, a radon expert from the University of Iowa, says that no exposure to radon is safe. “Within a couple of minutes, half the radon in the water will diffuse into the air,” Field says. “Once the gas diffuses out, it creates the decay products that cause the majority of the lung cancers." (PRI)
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Robinson comments on media coverage of medical research

Jennifer Robinson, CPH professor of epidemiology, recently was among a group of cardiologists and preventive medicine experts who offered their thoughts about media coverage of research findings that question the safety of widely used drugs, and what medical journals could do to discourage sensational reporting of medical research. (MedPage Today)
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Informatics cluster opens on CPHB’s fifth floor

The University of Iowa’s informatics faculty cluster has a new campus space on the fifth floor of the College of Public Health Building (CPHB). The cluster, launched in 2013, is a major multidisciplinary initiative aimed at establishing the UI as a national center of excellence in the field of informatics and big data. (Iowa Now)
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CPH researcher finds alcohol abuse is linked to discrimination

Researchers at the University of Iowa have found another negative health outcome linked to discrimination: alcohol abuse. “We’ve had this idea that discrimination is associated with heavier drinking and drinking-related problems, but we didn’t have a clear understanding of the evidence underneath that,” says Paul Gilbert, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health and lead author of the study. “Our study supports the notion that discrimination is harmful to health, specifically through alcohol." (Iowa Now)
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MHA program works with alumni to prepare health care leaders

The Master of Health Administration (MHA), offered through the Department of Health Management and Policy in the UI College of Public Health, has maintained a 100 percent job placement rating within the first three months after graduation, thanks in large part to an impressive alumni network. (Iowa Now)
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College hosts first Drowsy Driving Summit

More than 60 people gathered Thursday at the University of Iowa College of Public Health for what was billed as the first-in-the-nation Drowsy Driving Summit. Researchers, transportation planners, and public officials are working on new ways to reduce drowsy driving, involved in 21 percent of fatal crashes nationwide. (Multiple Sources)
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UI takes part in cancer ‘moonshot’ summit

The UI's Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center was a host site for Wednesday’s “National Cancer Moonshot Initiative.” Mary Charlton, with the UI College of Public Health Department of Epidemiology and co-investigator with the statewide Iowa Cancer Registry, participated on a panel discussion that was broadcast live via Facebook. (The Gazette)
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Atchison writes op-ed on Iowa’s water quality

Christopher Atchison recently wrote an opinion piece on Iowa's water quality from his perspective as director of the State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa. "[E]vidence suggests that Iowa should take a fresh and comprehensive look at water quality, and how we can best serve our people. A unified, inclusive approach to understanding state watersheds and how we can improve quality is vital to our economy and health," he wrote. (Des Moines Register)
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Thorne discusses Iowa’s water, algae blooms

CPH Professor Peter Thorne recently discussed water quality and toxic, blue green algae blooms expected in Iowa this summer. (Iowa Public Radio)
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Rohlman recommends extra training for young farm workers

Many farmers hire high school and college students for summer help, but young workers are at increased risk for injuries because of their limited experience and lack of ability to identify safety hazards on the job. Effective training is critically important for their safety. Diane Rohlman, director of the UI Healthier Workforce Center for Excellence, notes, “Training is an ongoing process. You need to train young workers when they are first hired, when they are given a new task or tool to use, when they switch tasks, and after a close call or injury.” (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Osterberg weighs in on strategies for Iowa’s water quality

In an opinion piece on Iowa's water quality, David Osterberg, a co-founder of the nonpartisan Iowa Policy Project and CPH clinical professor, writes that apart from funding, "State policy needs to push for specific actions to improve soil and water management practices. That starts on the farm, and realistically it will require a combination of public and private strategies." (Des Moines Register)
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Partnership aims to improve health through affordable housing

Selected as one of 50 cities nationwide by the Reinvestment Fund and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Iowa City has convened a five-member team as part of the Invest Health program. The program is aimed at helping leaders from mid-sized cities improve the health of low-income communities. The team includes Vickie Miene, deputy director of the Institute of Public Health Research and Policy based in the CPH. (Press-Citizen)
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Financial status affects success of students with learning disabilities

A new University of Iowa study found that only one-third of undergraduates from 11 universities who reported having a learning disability were receiving accommodations. The disparity might come down to two things: a desire to be independent and money. CPH co-authors on the paper include Natalie Langenfeld, a PhD student in biostatistics, and Jacob Oleson, associate professor of biostatistics. (Iowa Now)
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Business Leadership Network holds community forum in Osceola

The UI College of Public Health's Business Leadership Network held a community forum in Osceola on May 5. The event included presentations on key issues related to community health for youths, the working generations, and older people. (Osceola Sentinel-Tribune)
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O’Shaughnessy cited in story on frac sand mining

A frac sand mining company that recently opened a site in Wisconsin is facing opposition to plans for an expansion of its underground mine in Clayton County, Iowa. Patrick O’Shaughnessy, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, told members of a county committee studying expansion on April 28 in Elkader, Iowa, that it would be wise to review the mine’s record and reputation when considering the proposal. (Post-Crescent)
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Ayyagari comments on Social Security benefits, health of elderly

To reduce the financial pressure on state pensions, policymakers often seek to raise the retirement entry age or lower benefits. However, a recent study establishes that higher benefits improve mental health and cognitive abilities. “Our findings suggest that changes to Social Security benefits have important implications on the health and well-being of the elderly,” says Padmaja Ayyagari, CPH assistant professor of health management and policy. (Project M)
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CPH students create ‘bike boulevard’ for Iowa City

A class in the UI College of Public Health has collaborated with Iowa City and community organizations to put together a bike boulevard. The temporary bike boulevard will be set up on College Street on May 21 from 8 a.m. to noon, and is part of a larger campaign the group has put together called Join the Movement. Emily Hejna, a student in the class, said the goal of the larger campaign is to get people to push for a more bike-friendly Iowa City, and to educate the community on bike safety. (Daily Iowan)
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Osterberg cited in story on Iowa’s wind industry

Iowa’s rise to the top in wind energy is a story of bipartisan cooperation, of a broad effort among industry, lawmakers, farmers, and environmentalists to embrace the potential of a renewable resource. “Any time you can say something is good for the farmer, you have a good chance of it passing,” says David Osterberg, CPH clinical professor of occupational and environmental health. (Yes! Magazine)
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Baker studies shared sanitation facilities, health risks to children

Sharing a sanitation facility between households can be linked to increased risk of moderate-to-severe diarrhea in children under 5 years of age at some sites, according to Global Enteric Multicenter Study (GEMS) study findings published this week in PLOS Medicine. The study, conducted by Kelly Baker from the University of Iowa College of Public Health and colleagues, suggests that access to private sanitation facilities should remain a global health priority. (EurekAlert)
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O’Shaughnessy comments on sand mine health risks

Airborne silica particles resulting from the proposed expansion of the Pattison sand mine in Clayton County, Iowa, pose a “low risk to human health,” University of Iowa professor Patrick O’Shaughnessy said Thursday night at a meeting of the committee studying potential impacts of the expansion. (The Gazette)
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Advocates urge Cedar Rapids to get more help solving gun violence

Advocates trying to find solutions to gun violence in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, are asking city officials to call on the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for help. The group cited a CDC study conducted in Wilmington, Del., that approached the issue from an epidemiological perspective with a focus on data collection and analysis. Traci Schwieger, a research scientist at the University of Iowa College of Public Health, told council members she analyzed the CDC study and described it as “essentially a risk assessment.” (The Gazette)
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Students help create ‘Smarter Lunchrooms’

Lunchrooms in five Iowa school districts look a little different after students, food service workers, and University of Iowa researchers made changes to promote healthy foods. The partnership involves a national program called “Smarter Lunchrooms.” The idea is to let students help schools redesign cafeterias to put healthier choices like fruits and vegetables up front. It’s part of a plan to combat adolescent obesity and cut waste. (KCRG)
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Researchers look at money problems, domestic violence

UI researchers have found an association between financial stress and severe domestic abuse, which is an important step in the effort to develop effective interventions. Their findings don’t prove that one leads to the other, but they do affirm the complexity of domestic violence. “What we don’t know yet is whether financial stress makes a violent couple more violent, or is financial stress enough of a disruption in a relationship that violence begins?” says Corinne Peek-Asa, a corresponding author and director of the Injury Prevention Research Center at the UI College of Health. “Both are plausible.” (Iowa Now)
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Islet transplantation restores blood sugar awareness, control in type 1 diabetes

New clinical trial results show that transplantation of pancreatic islets—cell clusters that contain insulin-producing cells—prevents severe, potentially life-threatening drops in blood sugar in people with type 1 diabetes. The Clinical Trials Statistical and Data Management Center (CTSDMC), based in the UI College of Public Health, was the data coordinating center for this national study. UI authors on the study are William Clarke (professor emeritus) and the late Kathryn Chaloner. (NIH)
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Helping high school students to eat better

The University of Iowa Public Policy Center, the College of Public Health, the Iowa Department of Education, and five high schools across the state have teamed up to help students make healthier school-lunch choices by empowering them to assess and change their lunchrooms. (Iowa Now)
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Collaboration protects farmers in Argentina

In May, researchers from the UI College of Public Health will travel to Argentina to meet with farmers, veterinarians, and university staff to begin developing an agricultural safety and health program for Argentine producers. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Ottumwans keep moving on ‘National Walking Day’

Ottumwans took steps toward a healthier lifestyle Wednesday by participating in American Heart Association's Annual "National Walking Day." According to Barbara Baquero, assistant professor at the UI College of Public Health, the event was a way to celebrate walking and finding a way to stay active. Baquero is involved with "Active Ottumwa," a community research project aimed at engaging adults to be physically active and increase the usage of parks. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Campo discusses celebrities vs. science

Health advice from celebrities often creates a lot of buzz, clouding an already confusing medical landscape. "I think the crux of much of this problem is that U.S. adults have very low health literacy,” says Shelly Campo, CPH associate professor of community and behavioral health. ... “At the same time, we’ve got an unbelievably complicated health system.” (U.S. News and World Report)
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Ottumwa takes part in National Walking Day

The mayor of Ottumwa, Iowa, recently signed a proclamation for National Walking Day. To help celebrate the day on April 6, researchers with Active Ottumwa, a project of the Prevention Research Center based in the College of Public Health, organized a community-wide 30-minute walk along the city’s trail system. (Ottumwa Courier)
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Active Ottumwa takes first steps with new walking program

Ottumwa celebrated National Walking Day April 6 with a community walk on the city's trail system. The event was a joint venture between the city, American Heart Association, and Active Ottumwa. Active Ottumwa is also starting a new walking program at Quincy Place Mall later this month. (KTVO)
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Curry encourages readers to be thankful for public health

In honor of National Public Health Week, CPH Dean Sue Curry recently wrote a column reminding readers "to be thankful for some of the many 'invisible' achievements of public health." She writes, "When public health is working, bad things don’t happen — and as a result public health programs tend to be invisible." (Huffington Post)
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Mueller comments on new Medicare payment rules

Starting April 1, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) shifted how it pays hospitals in the United States for major leg procedures. “[This payment model] should also have an impact on quality,” said Keith Mueller, CPH professor and head of health management and policy, “because you start being more careful how you’re measuring the outcomes of a hip replacement or a knee replacement.” (Healthline)
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CPH to collaborate with Hardin Library on online training

The University of Iowa Libraries’ Hardin Library for the Health Sciences has been awarded a five-year grant to serve as a Regional Medical Library in the National Network of Libraries of Medicine. Efforts will include collaboration with the UI College of Public Health to provide training for public health professionals through an online platform, with particular emphasis on serving underrepresented populations. (Iowa Now)
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Med student cites training received in agricultural medicine course

UI medical student Whitney Kaefring is one of the inaugural students in the UI Carver College of Medicine Rural Iowa Scholars Program (CRISP), which was created to help address the shortage of doctors practicing in rural Iowa. As part of her training, Kaefring completed an agricultural medicine course offered through the UI College of Public Health that covered medical issues unique to rural settings, such as farm-machinery accidents. (Iowa Now)
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2016 Cancer in Iowa report issued

The latest annual report on cancer in Iowa estimates 16,600 new cancers will be diagnosed among Iowa residents in 2016. In addition, an estimated 6,400 Iowans will die from cancer, according to the “Cancer in Iowa: 2016” report released March 30 by the State Health Registry of Iowa, based in the University of Iowa College of Public Health. The report includes county-by-county statistics, summaries of new research projects, and a section focused on cancer among adolescents and young adults.
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Baquero describes health disparities research

Barbara Baquero, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, describes how her community-engaged research addresses health inequalities related to obesity and cancer among Latinos in low-resource communities. (Public Health Minute)
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Class works to make biking safer in Iowa City

A UI class is working with the community to devise methods to make biking safer in Iowa City. Eight graduate students are working on two projects promoting bike safety as part of Associate Professor Shelly Campo’s communications campaign class in the College of Public Health. (Daily Iowan)
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Study shows correlation between domestic violence, premature births

UI College of Public Health researchers examined the link between domestic violence and birth outcomes. "We wanted to compare the women who had preterm birth with women who did not have preterm birth, and then we looked at the exposure of domestic violence to see if that increased the risk," researcher Brittney Donovan says. "We wanted to identify what risks it may impose on a pregnancy and on the infant at the time of delivery," adds Audrey Saftlas, professor of epidemiology. (KGAN)
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Article offers tips for finding the right respirator

Stephanie Leonard, an industrial hygienist with the University of Iowa Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, recently wrote about selecting and using the right respirator safely on the farm. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Study finds racial, gender imbalance in HPV vaccinations

White women are far more likely to complete the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine series than black or Latina women, according to a new study by two University of Iowa College of Public Health researchers. Those women also are more likely to be vaccinated than their male counterparts. (The Gazette)
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Study finds domestic violence doubles risk of premature birth

Domestic violence by a partner or ex-partner during pregnancy doubles the risk of pre-term birth and low birth weight, according to a study conducted by University of Iowa researchers. The team also found that domestic violence slightly increased the risk of a baby being small for gestational age. (The Guardian)
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Researchers create web toolkit aimed at bullying prevention

The UI Injury Prevention Research Center (IPRC) and The Working Group Theater have launched a web toolkit called Helping Educators Use Art to Reduce Bullying, or HEAR, to help educators discuss bullying. "We wanted to create some activities that fit into the classroom, after-school programs, and youth groups," says Corinne Peek-Asa, director of the IPRC. (KGAN)
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Field comments on health risks of radon exposure

Radon, an invisible, odorless gas, concentrates in homes and buildings, exposing those who breathe it in to the second-top cause of lung cancer in the U.S. "Radon is actually the leading environmental cause of cancer mortality in the United States," says Bill Field, a professor of occupational and environmental health at the University of Iowa. "About 21,000 people die each year from it. People really underestimate its importance." (U.S. News & World Report)
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Baquero discusses public health, affordable housing

The UI Obermann Center recently hosted a panel discussion addressing the issue of affordable housing in Johnson County. Barbara Baquero, CPH assistant professor of community and behavioral health, believes housing plays a vital role in public health. “When people think of what public health is, they think about issues like disease, infections, and obesity. However, housing has a huge influence on personal health,” she said. (Daily Iowan)
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‘Out of Bounds’ play kicks off national tour

“Out of Bounds,” a play that centers on bullying in school, will kick off a 17-venue, three-month national tour this month. Created by the founders of Iowa City’s Working Group Theatre, the play was first performed in the fall of 2013 with support from the University of Iowa College of Public Health, Hancher, and the Iowa City Community School District. (KIOW)
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Researchers create web toolkit to combat bullying

CPH researchers have introduced a new arts-related web toolkit to provide resources to teachers to combat bullying issues. The toolkit is called HEAR, which stands for Helping Educators Use Art to Reduce Bullying. "There are specific activities on cyber bullying that address social media communications, specifically, but it also addresses bystander activity, building friendships, how to understand what's good about being the same [and] what's good about being different,” says Corinne Peek-Asa, director of the University of Iowa Injury Prevention Research Center. (KCRG)
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Falls, motor vehicles crashes top causes of accidental injuries in Iowa

Falls are the second-biggest cause of accidental injuries leading to death in Iowa, trailing only motor vehicle wrecks. That’s just one of the statistics in the “2015 State Health Profile for Iowa,” compiled by the Iowa Department of Public Health and the University of Iowa College of Public Health. (The Daily Nonpareil)
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Researchers study vector-borne diseases passed from mother to child

UI researchers are reminding U.S. doctors to watch for two vector-borne and potentially life-threatening diseases that can be passed from mother to child. Though Chagas' disease and Leishmaniasis are generally found in other parts of the world, global travel and migration have made the U.S. vulnerable. “Congenital transmission will be the predominant way that kids in the United States get these diseases because we don’t have the bug problem,” says Christine Petersen, CPH associate professor of epidemiology.
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College hosts Privilege Walk

As part of Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Week, the UI College of Public Health hosted a Privilege Walk Wednesday. “People had a better understanding of privilege and barriers,” said Tanya Uden-Holman, CPH associate dean for academic affairs. “They thought about different types of barriers besides race, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and religion.”
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Lynch cited in article on raising awareness of radon

Cynthia Wolff, a family physician at Akron/Mercy Medical Clinic in western Iowa, was recently honored for her commitment to inform her community about the dangers of radon gas. It was at a 2012 Iowa Cancer Consortium meeting in Des Moines where Wolff first heard Charles Lynch, CPH professor of epidemiology, speak on the dangers of radon gas in Iowa. (LeMars Daily Sentinel)
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Donham comments on hearing loss among ag workers

Many farmers experience some form of mid-range hearing loss after years of being around loud machinery. However, few realize their hearing is gradually declining until it’s too late. “It’s one of the most common physical disabilities we have in agriculture," says Kelley Donham, CPH professor emeritus of occupational and environmental health. (Iowa Farmer Today)
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Ryckman helps develop method to test for gestational age

UI researchers, including Epidemiology Prof. Kelli Ryckman, have found that a metabolic profile derived from routine newborn screenings is a reliable method of estimating an infant's gestational age.
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Program trains American Indian, Alaska Native health leaders

Learn more about the American Indian and Alaska Native Leadership Academy, a training program that addresses the need for culturally informed leadership development for American Indian and Alaska Native behavioral health providers. The program is offered through the National American Indian & Alaska Native ATTC based in the UI College of Public Health. (Service Improvement Blog)
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Field comments on cities’ use of herbicide

Several cities, including Chicago and Boulder, have stopped using a weed-killer that contains glyphosate, a chemical the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer says is “probably carcinogenic to humans.” Bill Field, a University of Iowa professor who has studied environmental causes of cancer, said that there is still some uncertainty over whether glyphosate alone, or combined with other pesticides, can pose a cancer threat to humans, but "... it would be prudent to follow the lead of other cities that eliminated the use of glyphosate in public places." (Epoch Times)
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UI to help improve pain education for health professional students

The University of Iowa is one of 11 Centers for Excellence in Pain Education selected by the National Institutes of Health Pain Consortium. The centers will help improve pain education for undergraduate and graduate health professional students. Tanya Uden-Holman, CPH clinical professor of health management and policy, is a co-principal investigator on the project.
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Kaskie discusses Medicaid privatization delay

Last month, federal administrators ordered Iowa to wait at least 60 days before shifting its Medicaid program to private management. Brian Kaskie, CPH associate professor of health management and policy, recently answered several questions about the order. (Iowa Public Radio)
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CPH researchers help with cancer prevention in West Liberty

Jason Daniel-Ulloa, a research scientist in the UI College of Public Health, is among a group of researchers helping to educate residents of West Liberty about cancer prevention. “Some members of the community said cervical cancer was hitting the community hard,” Daniel-Ulloa said. “So we got some funding to do HPV vaccination education.” (The Gazette)
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CPH center helps identify Iowa’s priority health issues

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) has begun development of the most comprehensive health needs assessment ever undertaken by the department. To help identify priority health issues, IDPH partnered with the UI College of Public Health’s Center for Public Health Statistics on the 2015 State Health Profile for Iowa. (Oskaloosa Herald)
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Torner comments on rise of unintentional poisoning deaths

Health officials in Iowa say they’ve seen a nearly 250 percent increase in unintentional poisoning deaths from 2002 until 2014, and many are linked to prescription and illicit drug use. “The main issues in the state of Iowa are falls and poisonings, and poisonings have virtually doubled in the last decade,” said James Torner, CPH professor and head of epidemiology. Torner added that one of the biggest challenges facing society is how to collect prescription drugs that go unused. (KCRG)
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Janssen shares passion for farm safety, music

Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, was recently profiled about her work focused on improving farm safety. She's also a musician who performs old-time music, which helps her make community connections. "After performing, I can sit at a table and talk casually with farmers and not feel like I'm walking in as 'The Farm Safety Lady,'" she says. "Sometimes a person can learn a lot more that way." (Press-Citizen)
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Surgery may prolong survival for some women with stage IV breast cancer

Using data from over 21,000 patients, a UI study shows that survival has improved for women with stage IV breast cancer over the past two and a half decades and that receiving surgery to remove the primary tumor is associated with improved survival. The research team included Elizabeth Chrischilles, professor of epidemiology and Marvin A. and Rose Lee Pomerantz Chair in the UI College of Public Health. (Iowa Now)
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UI students to help vision clinic in India expand services for poor patients

A team of University of Iowa students from the College of Public Health, College of Engineering, and Tippie College of Business will visit India in January to help a world-renowned eye doctor provide vision care and cataract surgery to more poor patients. The trip is co-organized by Kristy Walker, chief information officer of UI Health Enterprises, who teaches health care informatics in the College of Public Health. (Iowa Now)
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UI students seek global perspective in India

A dozen UI graduate and undergraduate students studying public health and business will travel in December to Madurai, India, for a three-week class, part of the UI's India Winterim program. Aaron Ries, a UI graduate student studying health management and policy, said the upcoming trip will be his first time traveling in India and an opportunity to experience a different part of the globe. “I’d like to see how medical systems in different parts of the world operate," he said. (Press-Citizen)
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Thompson writes about Native American Indian Heritage Month

November is National Native American Indian Heritage Month. Lena Thompson (MPH '14), a research associate with the National American Indian and Alaska Native ATTC, celebrates Native American culture and writes about the importance of spirituality before, during, and after substance use disorder treatment in Native American communities. (ATTC/NIATx blog)
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Summit addresses heroin and opioid abuse in eastern Iowa

On Thursday, Nov. 12, the College of Public Health hosted the summit "Heroin and Opioids: A Community Crisis" that brought more than 200 experts together to address the heroin and prescription opioid abuse and overdose epidemic plaguing eastern Iowa. (Multiple sources)
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Introductory course answers ‘What is public health?’

Fundamentals of Public Health is an introductory course offered by the UI College of Public Health designed to introduce students to the field while emphasizing pertinent issues, challenges, achievements, and potential careers. Beginning in fall 2016, the UI will offer a bachelor’s degree in public health and the Fundamentals course will be part of the undergraduate curriculum. (Iowa Now)
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Curry : E-cigarettes should be regulated by FDA

CPH Dean Sue Curry is among a group of experts who offered their opinions on what regulations for the e-cigarette industry should look like. "Electronic cigarettes are being sold today as tobacco products and should be regulated as such by the FDA," Curry writes. "We need to ensure that they can’t be sold to minors, and we must ban advertising that glamorizes and normalizes their use." (STAT)
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CPH faculty participate in The Op-Ed Project workshop

Twenty-one UI faculty representing diverse disciplines and backgrounds were selected to participate in a two-day "Write to Change the World" workshop Nov. 7 and 8 through The Op Ed Project. CPH faculty members Marizen Ramirez and Brandi Janssen were among the participants in the workshop, which has the mission of increasing the range of voices and quality of ideas we hear in the world. (Iowa Now)
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