Video highlights community-based efforts to increase HPV vaccination

A new video from the University of Iowa’s Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN) highlights community-based participatory research approaches that began in 2014 to increase human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination rates in the east central Iowa community of West Liberty. “Despierta a Tu Salud” (Wake Up to Your Health), a cancer prevention project for rural Latino communities, was developed in response to community concerns about cervical cancer.

Jason Daniel Ulloa, clinical assistant professor of community and behavioral health, led a team of UI students and community partners that included schools, churches, volunteers, and the UI Mobile Clinic. In the video, Daniel-Ulloa provides an overview of the project, emphasizing his commitment to community involvement and mentoring, and student researchers share their experiences.

Register by Sept. 16 for the 2018 Iowa Cancer Summit

The Iowa Cancer Summit, the state’s only comprehensive cancer control conference, will be held in Ankeny, Iowa, on Sept. 24-25, 2018, and students are encouraged to attend! The annual event connects health educators, health professionals, and other cancer and public health advocates to network and exchange best practices in cancer prevention, screening, treatment, and quality of life.

This event is a great opportunity for students to network and learn more about how they can get involved with various projects going on right now. Students are eligible for a discounted registration rate of $60.

Early registration deadline is September 16.

The conference agenda, complete registration details, and further information is available on the Iowa Cancer Summit web page:

Seminar on data-powered decision making and cancer screening is May 4

Stephanie Wheeler, associate professor at the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health, will present “Data-Powered Decision Making: Guiding Colorectal Cancer Screening Implementation through Simulation” at noon on Friday, May 4, in W256 GH. Her talk is part of the Holden Cancer Center’s Grand Rounds and is open to all. Mary Wheeler to speak about data and cancer screening

Iowa researchers co-author CPCRN report on colorectal cancer screening interventions

The Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN) recently issued a report based on a survey that was conducted to assess which evidence-based colorectal cancer screening interventions are currently being utilized in Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and which implementation strategies are being employed to ensure that the interventions are executed as intended.

The University of Iowa was one of eight FQHCs that participated in the survey which was coordinated onsite by the Prevention Research Center at the UI College of Public Health. The UI team was also a part of the CPCRN workgroup that published the brief and included Edith Parker, Natoshia Askelson, and Laura Seegmiller.

The survey found that while colorectal cancer screening rates have been increasing, there is still work to be done in order to reach the national goal of 80% by 2018.

According to a report

  • The majority (77%) of surveyed FQHCs were either fully or partially implementing evidence-based interventions (EBIs) to improve colorectal cancer (CRC) screening.
  • Health centers were actively using a range of implementation strategies to incorporate EBIs into practice.
  • EBIs that were underutilized include: patient reminders, patient navigation, small media, and group education.
  • Implementation strategies that were underutilized include: community assessments, formation of implementation teams, formal commitments to recommend CRC screening, and incentive or penalty systems for providers and organizations.

A PDF of the full report is available at


International panels will address breast cancer in Asia

All are invited to two public panels featuring a medical and  anthropology delegation from the National University of Singapore and the National Museum of Denmark, who will speak about an international and inter-disciplinary project to study the hurdles which women across Asia face in early presentation, diagnosis, and treatment of breast cancer.

Breast Cancer Meanings: Journeys across Asia

Monday, April 23 |  3:30 – 5 pm | 1117 University Capitol Centre

Breast cancer is now the most common and fast-growing cancer among women in most Asian countries. This University of Iowa Anthropology Seminar with panelists (see below) will present conversations across Asia with breast cancer patients, their caregivers, traditional healers as well as ordinary people on the subject of breast cancer meanings.

Choosing to Die: A Global Look at the Impact of Cultural Norms on the Choices Women Make in Cancer Treatment

Tuesday, April 24 | 3 – 4:30 pm | 1117 University Capitol Centre

Panelists will discuss details of their recent international, interdisplinary pilot study focused on the hurdles women across Asia seem to face when diagnosed with breast cancer. Moderated by Dr. Resmiye Oral, UI Carver College of Medicine.

Panelists include:

Mikael Hartman
Senior consultant in division of general surgery (breast surgery) at National University Hospital and head of Breast Cancer Prevention Program of the School of Public Health, National University of Singapore

Wong Mee Lian
Professor of public health, School of Public Health and School of Medicine, National University of Singapore

Jenny Liu
Manager of the Breast Cancer Prevention Program, School of Public Health, National University of Singapore

Miriam Koktvedgaard Zeitzen
Anthropologist, modern history and world cultures, National Museum of Denmark

Cynthia Chou
Professor of Anthropology and C. Maxwell and Elizabeth M. Stanley Family Chair of Asian Studies, University of Iowa

Sponsored by International Programs, Center for Asian and Pacific Studies, the Department of Anthropology, and the Stanley-UI Foundation Support Organization

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Sarolta Petersen at (319) 335-3862

CPH Relay for Life team is top fundraiser

Congratulations to the College of Public Health Relay for Life team for raising $2,940 for cancer research and patient care programs. They were the #1 fundraisers out of 17 teams at the Relay for Life of Johnson County event held April 7. Special shout out to Chuck Hession for being the #1 individual fundraiser out of all participants and to Erin Mobley for serving as team leader! Check out all of the results.

group photo of the 2018 CPH Relay for Life team

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.

The annual report also projects an estimated 17,800 new cancers will be diagnosed among Iowa residents this year. Breast cancer will remain the most common type of cancer diagnosed among females, while prostate cancer will remain the most common type among males.

“Overall, the number of new cases of cancer per year in Iowa is remaining flat,” says Mary Charlton, assistant professor of epidemiology at the UI College of Public Health. “In the past couple of years, we projected greater decreases in prostate cancer cases as a result of the 2012 U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommendations against prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening, but we haven’t seen big declines. This suggests PSA testing practices in Iowa have not substantially changed, despite the recommendations of the USPSTF.”

Researchers also are not seeing the anticipated decrease in lung cancer cases. According to Charlton, this likely reflects the fact that smoking rates in Iowa are no longer declining at the rate they were a decade ago.

The report includes county-by-county statistics, summaries of new research projects, and a special section focused on obesity-related cancer.

Read the full Iowa Now article

Watch the video of a press conference discussing the 2018 report

Additional Media Coverage:

The Gazette


The Daily Iowan