Melanoma rates among younger women in New Hampshire (NH) are rising. In urban studies, youth proximity to tanning facilities has been linked to indoor tanning, a proven cause of melanoma. Youth access has not been examined in rural settings. To determine on a statewide basis the influence of rurality and community income level on female students' ease of access to tanning facilities, all NH tanning facilities (N = 261) and high schools (N = 77) in 2011 were spatially and statistically analyzed to determine schools with more facilities within 2 miles of the school and greater capacity (fewer female students per facility), for indoor tanning. Schools above the state-wide average for both measures were classified as “Easy Access” to indoor tanning. Among NH high schools, 74 % have 1 or more tanning facility within two miles and 22 % have “Easy Access” to tanning facilities. Ease of access did not differ by rurality. Lower-income school status was an independent predictor of both greater capacity and “Easy Access”. While urban and rural teens have similar access to indoor tanning, female students in lower-income communities have easier access. Variations in access by community size and income must be considered in planning interventions to address youth indoor tanning.
Recreational tanning; Skin neoplasms; Adolescence; Rural communities
The global rise in non-communicable disease (NCD) suggests that US-based refugees are increasingly affected by chronic conditions. However, health services have focused on the detection of infectious disease, with relatively limited data on chronic NCDs. Using data from a retrospective medical record review of a refugee health program in the urban Northeast (n = 180), we examined the prevalence of chronic NCDs and NCD risk factors among adult refugees who had recently arrived in the US, with attention to region of origin and family composition. Family composition was included because low-income adults without dependent children are at high risk of becoming uninsured. We found that half of the adult refugees in this sample had at least one chronic NCD (51.1%), and 9.5% had three or more NCDs. Behavioral health diagnoses were most common (15.0%), followed by hypertension (13.3%). Half of adults were overweight or obese (54.6%). Chronic NCDs were somewhat more common among adults from Iraq, but this difference was not significant (56.8 vs. 44.6%). Chronic NCDs were common among adults with and without dependent children (61.4 vs. 44.6%, respectively), and these two groups did not significantly differ in their likelihood of having a chronic NCD after adjustment for age and gender (AOR = 0.78, 95% CI = 0.39, 1.55). This study suggests that chronic NCDs are common among adult refugees in the US, including refugees at high risk for uninsurance. We propose that refugee health services accommodate screening and treatment for chronic NCDs and NCD risk factors, and that insurance outreach and enrollment programs target recently arrived refugees.
Emigrant and immigrant/chronic diseases; Refugees/chronic diseases; Refugees/epidemiology
Community health advisor-led interventions are associated with improved health promotion behaviors, such as cancer screening, but the process of training community health advisors is rarely described and evaluated. We trained 91 Filipino Americans from 19 organizations to conduct small-group sessions with members of their organizations to promote colorectal cancer screening. Community health advisors completed brief pre- and post-training surveys that included knowledge of colorectal cancer screening guidelines (4 items), perceived self-efficacy of performing specific tasks (15-item scale, Cronbach’s alpha >.90) and satisfaction with the training itself (5 items). Community health advisors had high levels of knowledge and self-efficacy at pre-training, but levels increased significantly immediately after the 6-hour training (percent of knowledge items answered correctly: 63% to 94%; self-efficacy: 8.2 to 8.9 on a 10 point scale, both p<.001). Correlates of self-efficacy at pre- and post-test were high educational attainment, health care background, high level of participation in the organization, being perceived by others as a leader, and frequent participation in research activities in the past. Consistent evaluation measuring similar constructs across studies may help to standardize the quality of the training, and may improve the implementation of community health advisor-led programs.
lay health educator; community health educator; evaluation of training; self-efficacy; knowledge; satisfaction
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration revealed new pictorial warning labels in June 2011 for cigarette packages, yet little is known about how these labels are perceived by U.S. residents. We examined the reactions to and attitudes about the new labels among residents of Appalachian Ohio, a region with a high smoking prevalence.
We conducted focus groups with Appalachian Ohio residents between July and October 2011. Participants included healthcare providers (n=30), community leaders (n=26), parents (n=28), and young adult men ages 18–26 (n=18).
Most participants supported the addition of the new labels to U.S. cigarette packages, though many were unaware of the labels prior to the focus groups. Participants did not think the labels would be effective in promoting smoking cessation among smokers in their communities, but they were more positive about the potential of the labels to reduce smoking initiation. Smokers reported positive feedback about the more graphic labels, particularly those showing a man with a tracheal stoma or a person with severe oral disease. The labels that include a cartoon image of an ill infant and a man who quit smoking received the most negative feedback.
Participants generally supported adding pictorial warning labels to U.S. cigarette packages, but only a few of labels received mostly positive feedback. Results offer early insight into how the new labels may be received if they are put into practice.
smoking; warning label; cigarette; Appalachia
Public health departments (n=48) serving the 32 counties of Ohio Appalachia were contacted to determine human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine availability and to assess patient and parental attitudes, perceived barriers, and decisional differences about vaccination for male and female adolescents. Nurses or nursing supervisors in 46 of 48 health departments agreed to participate with 45 (97.8%) reporting that HPV vaccines were available for males and females. HPV vaccination barriers reported most frequently were lack of knowledge about the vaccines, concerns about potential side effects, the newness of the HPV vaccines, and parents believing their children were not sexually active or were too young to receive an HPV vaccine. Provider reports of the primary differences in the acceptability of an HPV vaccine among parents of males compared to the parents of females were lack of awareness that an HPV vaccine was available for males, not understanding why the vaccine should be given to males, and fear of vaccination increasing sexual promiscuity among female adolescents. Half of the health departments (n=24) reported that parents of females were more receptive toward HPV vaccination, 16 health departments reported no difference in acceptability based on gender of the child, and 5 health departments reported that parents of males were more receptive. This study suggests that there are different informational needs of males and females and parents of male and female children when making an informed decision about HPV vaccination. Findings highlight content to include in strategies to increase HPV vaccination rates among Appalachia Ohio residents.
HPV vaccines; cervical cancer; health care disparities; adolescent; Appalachian region
This study tests hypotheses concerning ethnic disparities in daily cigarette smoking rates, nicotine dependence, cessation motivation, and knowledge and past use of cessation methods (e.g., counseling) and products (e.g., nicotine patch) in a multiethnic sample of smokers in Hawaii. Previous research has revealed significant differences in smoking prevalence among Native Hawaiians, Filipinos, Japanese, and Caucasians in Hawaii. However, no study has examined differences in dependence and cessation-related knowledge and practices among smokers representing these ethnic groups. Participants were recruited through newspaper advertisement as part of a larger smoking cessation intervention study. Participants (N=919; M age=45.6, SD=12.7; 48% Women) eligible to participate provided self-report data through mail and telephone. Participants included 271 self-identified Native Hawaiians, 63 Filipinos, 316 Caucasians, 145 “East Asians” (e.g., Japanese, Chinese), and 124 “Other” (e.g., Hispanic, African-American). Pair-wise comparisons of means, controlling for age, gender, income, education, and marital status, indicated that Native Hawaiian smokers reported significantly higher daily smoking rates and higher levels of nicotine dependence compared to East Asians. Native Hawaiian smokers reported significantly lower motivation to quit smoking than Caucasians. Further, Filipino and Native Hawaiian smokers reported lesser knowledge of cessation methods and products, and less frequent use of these methods and products than Caucasians. The results suggest that Native Hawaiian and Filipino smokers could be underserved with regard to receiving cessation-related advice, and may lack adequate access to smoking cessation products and services. In addition, cessation interventions tailored for Native Hawaiian smokers could benefit from a motivational enhancement component.
This study assessed HPV vaccination and its correlates among culturally diverse 18–26 year-old community college women in Los Angeles. Specific research questions were: (1) What proportion of respondents have initiated the HPV vaccine, and what proportion have completed the three-dose series? (2) What demographic (e.g., age, ethnicity), psychosocial (e.g., vaccine-related beliefs, perceived social norms), and health care-related variables (e.g., health insurance status, provider recommendation, health care trust and satisfaction) are associated with vaccine initiation for this sample?
Participants were recruited from the campus of a community college in central Los Angeles. All female students between 18 and 26 were eligible to participate. An anonymous web-based survey assessed number of HPV vaccine doses received as well as demographic information, HPV- and HPV vaccine-related knowledge, attitudes, and behavior, perceived social norms, provider & health care system factors, sexual behavior, cervical health, and mother-daughter communication about sex. Analyses were conducted using 178 surveys. Multivariate logistic regression tested the relationships of statistically significant bivariate predictors to vaccine initiation.
Those who initiated the vaccine were younger, more often had a health-related academic major, thought the vaccine to be safer, perceived HPV severity lower, and perceived higher social approval for HPV vaccination than those unvaccinated. All who had initiated the vaccine had a doctor’s recommendation.
To increase uptake among 18–26-year-old women, research should explore provider interventions to increase vaccine recommendation, and also identify individuals and groups who may have negative beliefs about vaccine safety and efficacy to provide support in vaccine decision-making.
HPV vaccine; cervical cancer prevention; college women; community college; ethnic minority women
To determine associations between specific colonoscopy patient characteristics, exam characteristics and patients’ perception of colonoscopy reducing their risk of dying from colorectal cancer.
A cross-sectional analysis was conducted using data (2004–2008) from the New Hampshire Colonoscopy Registry, consisting of a self-report questionnaire, colonoscopy report form, and a follow-up questionnaire, which included the question, “Having a colonoscopy decreased my chances of dying from colon cancer”. Chi-square tests and logistic regression were used to assess differences in patient responses by patient and colonoscopy characteristics.
A majority of patients (N=5672, 81%) agreed that having a colonoscopy decreased their chances of dying from colon cancer. Patients with a personal history of polyps were more likely to agree that colonoscopy reduced their chances of dying compared to patients without prior polypectomy [OR (95% CI) = 1.34 (1.06, 1.69)] and patients with a family history of colorectal cancer were 33% more likely to agree to the statement than those without a family history [OR (95% CI) = 1.33 (1.12, 1.58)].
Personal history of polyps and family history of colorectal cancer are significant predictors of patients’ positive perception of colonoscopy, suggesting that personal experience may influence the perceived benefit of colonoscopy. Intervention efforts should be made to effectively disseminate knowledge of the benefit of colonoscopy.
colonoscopy; colorectal cancer; screening; patient perception
The objective of this study is to examine the association between acculturation and BMI among Asian Americans using multiple measures of acculturation. Data of 847 Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese recruited for a health education program in Maryland during 2009 to 2010 were used. Acculturation was measured by the short version of Suinn-Lew Asian Self-Identity Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA) and its individual components. Height and weight were measured by trained staff. Multiple linear regressions were used to estimate the association between acculturation and BMI. After adjusting for age, gender, education, income, marital status, and ethnicity, SL-ASIA (β = 0.71, SE = 0.28), having education in the US (β = 0.56, SE = 0.28), younger age of arrival (0–5 years: β = 3.32, SE = 0.76, 6–10 years: β = 1.55, SE = 0.78), self identified as Americans (β = 1.51, SE = 0.77) and equal preference of Asian/American food in restaurants (β = 0.92, SE = 0.28) were significantly associated with increased BMI. The association between acculturation and BMI was stronger among men than women, strongest among Chinese and weakest among Vietnamese. Acculturation was moderately associated with increased BMI among Asian Americans and this association varied by measures of acculturation. The association of acculturation and BMI was moderated by sex and ethnicity groups.
BMI; Obesity; Acculturation; Asian Americans
Our study identifies the prevalence of HBV virus (HBV) screening and vaccination among Asian Americans, and ethnic differences for factors associated with screening and vaccination behaviors. In 2009–2010 we recruited 877 Korean, Chinese, and Vietnamese Americans 18 years of age and above through several community organizations, churches and local ethnic businesses in Maryland for a health education intervention and a self-administered survey. Prevalence of HBV screening, screening result and vaccinations were compared by each ethnic group. We used logistic regression analysis to understand how sociodemographics, familial factors, patient-, provider-, and resource-related barriers are associated with screening and vaccination behaviors, using the total sample and separate analysis for each ethnic group. Forty-seven percent of participants reported that they had received HBV screening and 38% had received vaccinations. Among the three groups, the Chinese participants had the highest screening prevalence, but lowest self-reported infection rate; Vietnamese has the lowest screening and vaccination prevalence. In multivariate analysis, having better knowledge of HBV, and family and physician recommendations was significantly associated with screening and vaccination behaviors. Immigrants who had lived in the US for more than a quarter of their lifetime were less likely to report ever having been screened (OR = 0.39, 95% CI: 0.28–0.55) or vaccinated (OR = 0.62, 95% CI: 0.44–0.88). In ethnic-specific analysis, having a regular physician (OR = 4.46, 95% CI: 1.62–12.25) and doctor's recommendation (OR = 2.11, 95% CI: 1.05–4.22) are significantly associated with Korean's vaccination behaviors. Health insurance was associated with vaccination behaviors only among Vietnamese (OR = 2.66, 95% CI: 1.21–5.83), but not among others.
HBV infection; Asian Americans; HBV prevalence; Health care access barriers
We characterized HCV treatment knowledge, experience and barriers in a cohort of community-based injection drug users (IDUs) in Baltimore, MD. In 2005, a questionnaire on HCV treatment knowledge, experience and barriers was administered to HCV-infected IDUs. Self-reported treatment was confirmed from medical records. Of 597 participants, 71% were male, 95% African-American, 31% HIV co-infected and 94% were infected with HCV genotype 1; 70% were aware that treatment was available, but only 22% understood that HCV could be cured. Of 418 who had heard of treatment, 86 (21%) reported an evaluation by a provider that included a discussion of treatment of whom 30 refused treatment, 20 deferred and 36 reported initiating treatment (6% overall). The most common reasons for refusal were related to treatment-related perceptions and a low perceived need of treatment. Compared to those who had discussed treatment with their provider, those who had not were more likely to be injecting drugs, less likely to have health insurance, and less knowledgeable about treatment. Low HCV treatment effectiveness was observed in this IDU population. Comprehensive integrated care strategies that incorporate education, case-management and peer support are needed to improve care and treatment of HCV-infected IDUs.
Hepatitis C virus; Injection drug use; Antiviral therapy; Health care access
The Amish have cultural practices that include formal education through the 8th grade. This study’s purpose was to compare the health literacy among Amish to non-Amish adults living in Ohio Appalachia to understand its potential contribution to poorer health behaviors (e.g. lower cancer screening rates). Amish (n = 143) and non-Amish (n = 154) adults completed interviews as part of a lifestyle study. The rapid estimate of adult literacy in medicine (REALM) instrument (score range 0–66) was used and mean REALM scores were compared (t test) and correct pronunciation of each word was compared (Chi square test). Significance was considered at p <0.001 because of multiple comparisons. Mean REALM scores among Amish males (53.3 ± 13.1) and females (56.2 ± 8.6) were significantly (p <0.001) lower compared to non-Amish males (61.2 ± 9.8) and females (63.0 ± 6.2). Twelve percent of Amish participants read at or lower than a 6th grade level compared to 2.6 % of non-Amish participants. This study provides a glimpse into how culture may influence health literacy. Many Amish participants had limited or marginal health literacy. Innovative strategies that address inadequate health literacy and specific cultural characteristics are needed to improve health-related behaviors and outcomes among the Amish.
Health literacy; Health education; Amish; Rural communities
We conducted a 2-year pilot randomized controlled trial (N = 105) in a high HIV-prevalence area in rural western Kenya to test whether providing young orphan adolescents with uniforms, school fees, and community visitors improves school retention and reduces HIV risk factors. The trial was a community intervention, limited to one community. In this paper, we examined intervention implementation and its association with outcomes using longitudinal data. We used both quantitative and qualitative methods to evaluate the community-based model for orphan HIV prevention, with recommendations for future studies. Despite promising effects after 1 year, GEE analyses showed null effects after 2 years. Volunteer community visitors, a key element of the intervention, showed little of the expected effect although qualitative reports documented active assistance to prevent orphans' school absence. For future research, we recommend capturing the transition to high school, a larger sample size, and biomarker data to add strength to the research design. We also recommend a school-based intervention approach to improve implementation and reduce infrastructure costs. Finally, we recommend evaluating nurses as agents for improving school attendance and preventing dropout because of their unique ability to address critical biopsychosocial problems.
HIV/AIDS prevention; Adolescent health; Community-based Intervention; Rural health; Global health
Available data indicate that Asian Americans as a group have lower levels of physical activity than non-Latino whites. However, few studies have focused on physical activity among Asian American sub-groups. Our objectives were to describe levels of physical activity, as well as individual and environmental correlates of physical activity among Cambodian Americans.
We conducted a telephone survey of Cambodians living in three geographic areas (Central California, Northern California, and the Pacific Northwest) during 2010. Physical activity levels were assessed using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) short version. Survey items addressed demographic characteristics, knowledge about the health benefits of physical activity, social norms and supports with respect to physical activity, the availability of neighbourhood recreational facilities, and neighbourhood characteristics.
Our study group included 222 individuals. Only 12% of the study group reported low levels of physical activity, 40% reported moderate levels, and 48% reported high levels. Physical activity was strongly associated with the availability of neighborhood recreational facilities such as parks, but not with neighborhood characteristics such as heavy traffic.
Our results suggest that a majority of Cambodian Americans are adherent to current physical activity guidelines. Neighborhood recreational facilities that provide opportunities for leisure-time physical activity are associated with higher levels of physical activity in Cambodian communities. Future research should assess the reliability and validity of the IPAQ in a Cambodian American study group.
Cambodian Americans; Physical activity
Community-based organizations (CBOs) have the potential to promote and sustain health, prevent disease, and address health disparities, but many lack the capacity to do so. An assessment of the 20 CBOs receiving supplemental grant funding from the Pfizer Foundation Southern HIV/AIDS Prevention Initiative indicated a high level of knowledge for developing goals and objectives (mean score = 3.08 on a scale of 0 (none) to 4 (extensive)) and high self-assessed abilities to conduct six of 20 specific intervention activities, including the development of community relationships and coalitions. Lower knowledge and skill levels were observed for intervention evaluation. While CBOs of this Initiative have established prerequisite abilities, they have self-acknowledged needs for technical assistance to maximize HIV/AIDS prevention capacity.
Primary prevention; Community health; HIV/AIDS; Planning; Evaluation
Low rates of breast and cervical cancer screening among Hmong women have been documented. Mistrust of Western medicine and the health care system, as well as experiences of discrimination in health care, may be barriers to seeking health care for this population. In this study, we explored medical mistrust among Hmong women and men, their experiences with discrimination in health care, and how these factors may influence Hmong women’s breast and cervical cancer screening behavior. We conducted semi-structured, in-depth interviews with women and men who were members of the Hmong community in Oregon. Transcripts of 83 interviews were analyzed using content analysis. Despite personally trusting Western medicine and the health care system, participants shared reasons that some Hmong people feel mistrust including lack of understanding or familiarity, culture, and tradition. Although mistrust was thought to result in delaying or avoiding breast or cervical cancer screening, more frequently trust was described as positively influencing screening. In addition, few participants reported being treated differently during breast or cervical cancer screening because they were Hmong. When discussing health care more broadly, however, some participants described differential (e.g., disrespectful or rude) treatment. Such experiences led to feelings such as anger and sadness and affected behavior, including willingness to seek care and choice of provider. Medical mistrust and perceived discrimination were not major barriers to breast and cervical cancer screening in this study. Additional studies are needed to assess whether our findings reflect the experiences of other Hmong.
mistrust; discrimination; Hmong; cancer screening
To describe the impact of a community gardening project on vegetable intake, food security and family relationships.
This community-based participatory research project used popular education techniques to support and educate Hispanic farm worker families in planting and maintaining organic gardens. Measures included a pre- post gardening survey, key informant interviews and observations made at community-based gardening meetings to assess food security, safety and family relationships.
Thirty-eight families enrolled in the study during the pre-garden time period, and four more families enrolled in the study during the post-garden period, for a total of 42 families enrolled in the 2009 gardening season. Of the families enrolled during the pre-gardening time period there were 163 household members. The mean age of the interviewee was 44.0, ranging from 21 to 78 years of age. The median number of occupants in a household was 4.0 (range: 2 to 8), Frequency of adult vegetable intake of “Several time a day” increased from 18.2% to 84.8%, (p < 0.001) and frequency of children’s vegetable intake of “Several time a day” increased from 24.0% to 64.0%, (p = 0.003). Before the gardening season, the sum of the frequencies of “Sometimes” and “Frequently” worrying in the past month that food would run out before money was available to buy more was 31.2% and the sum of these frequencies dropped to 3.1% during the post garden period, (p = 0.006). The frequency of skipping meals due to lack of money was not statistically significantly different before and after the gardening season for either adults or children. Analysis of text responses and key informant interviews revealed that physical and mental health benefits were reported as well as economic and family health benefits from the gardening study, primarily because the families often worked in their gardens together.
A community gardening program can reduce food insecurity, improve dietary intake and strengthen family relationships.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is the most common chronic blood-borne infection in the United States. Effective treatments are available, however adherence to treatment is challenging. Modified directly observed therapy (mDOT) with weekly administration of pegylated interferon might improve adherence and outcomes for patients infected with chronic HCV. To compare two treatment protocols and examine predictors of sustained virologic response (SVR). A retrospective review comparing chronic HCV treatment outcomes in two outpatient clinics at an urban academic medical center. Gastroenterology fellows provided standard treatment (SC) in one clinic; a nurse practitioner administered weekly pegylated interferon injections weekly in a primary care clinic. All patients received oral ribavirin. Data was extracted from the medical records of all treated patients over a 5-year period. 155 treatment-naïve, chronically infected HCV patients were treated. Ninety-seven patients received mDOT treatment and 58 received standard care. Mean age was 46 years. Genotype 1 represented 59 % of the sample. The mDOT patients were significantly more likely to be younger (44 vs. 50 years), have a history of injection drug use (93.1 vs. 50.0 %), and be HIV-infected (13.5 vs. 2 %) compared to SC patients. The overall SVR rate was 45.2 % and did not differ between the groups in unadjusted analyses (p = 0.95). Genotype was the only predictor of SVR. Patients treated by nurse practitioners trained in HCV care and seen weekly for interferon injections have comparable treatment outcomes to patients treated by specialists.
Primary care; Hepatitis; Urban health; Nursing; Disease management
In this paper we describe the development a culturally targeted (CT) smoking cessation intervention for low-to-middle income African–American smokers. Based on theoretically based guidelines, modifications were made to a standard treatment manual for group-based smoking cessation counseling that incorporates cognitive-behavioral, motivational, and twelve step skills. Approximately 41% of the standard treatment materials were modified, and four new modules were developed. A pilot study was conducted to compare acceptability, feasibility and early outcome indicates in African American smokers randomized to the CT intervention compared with existing data from African American smokers treated using a non-targeted standard approach (ST). Outcomes from the CT pilot study were promising: results showed high levels of feasibility, acceptability and better adherence to nicotine replacement therapy, higher quit rates, and better retention and follow-up compared with the ST. Findings suggest that a culturally targeted and intensive group based smoking cessation treatment is plausibly effective in improving smoking cessation outcomes in African American smokers, warranting a larger randomized trial.
Culturally targeted; African American; Smoking intervention
Whereas, most cancer research data come from high-profile academic centers, little is known about the outcomes of cancer care in rural communities. We summarize the experience of building a multi-institution partnership to develop a cancer outcomes research infrastructure in Southwest Georgia (SWGA), a primarily rural 33-county area with over 700,000 residents. The partnership includes eight institutions: the Emory University in Atlanta, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Georgia Comprehensive Center Registry (the Registry), the Southwest Georgia Cancer Coalition (the Coalition), and the four community cancer centers located within the SWGA region. The practical application of the partnership model, its organizational structure, and lessons learned are presented using two specific examples: a study evaluating treatment decisions and quality of life among prostate cancer patients, and a study of treatment discontinuation among prostate, breast, lung, and colorectal cancer patients. Our partnership model allowed us to (1) use the Coalition as a link between Atlanta-based researchers and local community; (2) collaborate with the area cancer centers on day-to-day study activities; (3) involve the Registry personnel and resources to identify eligible cancer cases and to perform data collection; and (4) raise community awareness and sense of study ownership through media announcements organized by the Coalition. All of the above activities were performed in consultation with the funding institution (CDC) and its project directors who oversee several other studies addressing similar research questions throughout the country. Our partnership model may provide a useful framework for cancer outcomes research projects in rural communities.
Cancer; Rural population; Outcomes research; Partnership
Blue collar workers are at risk for obesity. Little is known about factors associated with obesity in Operating Engineers, a group of blue collar workers. Therefore, a cross-sectional survey was conducted to determine variables related to obesity among Operating Engineers (heavy equipment operators). Operating Engineers (N=498) were recruited during their three-day safety courses to participate in the study. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were conducted to determine differences in personal and behavioral factors between obese and non-obese participants. Approximately 45% of the Operating Engineers screened positive for obesity and another 40% were overweight. Multivariate analysis revealed that younger age, male sex, higher numbers of self-reported comorbidities, not smoking, and low physical activity levels were significantly associated with obesity among Operating Engineers. Operating Engineers are significantly at risk for obesity. Workplace interventions that have been successful in other studies should be implemented to address the obesity epidemic among Operating Engineers in Michigan.
Obesity; Overweight; Blue Collar; Health Behaviors; Workplace
Cigarette Smoking is the leading cause of preventable mortality and morbidity in the United States. Healthcare providers can contribute significantly to the war against tobacco use; patients advised to quit smoking by their physicians are 1.6 times more likely to quit than patients not receiving physician advice. However, most smokers do not receive this advice when visiting their physicians. The Morehouse School of Medicine Tobacco Control Research Program was undertaken to develop best practices for implementing the “2000 Public Health Services Clinical Practice Guidelines on Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence” and the “Pathways to Freedom” tobacco cessation program among African American physicians in private practice and healthcare providers at community health centers. Ten focus groups were conducted; 82 healthcare professionals participated. Six major themes were identified as barriers to the provision of smoking cessation services. An intervention was developed based on these results and tested among Georgia community-based physicians. A total of 308 charts were abstracted both pre- and post-intervention. Charts were scored using a system awarding one point for each of the five “A’s” recommended by the PHS guidelines (Ask, Advise, Assess, Assist, Arrange) employed during the patient visit. The mean pre-intervention five “A’s” score was 1.29 compared to 1.90 post-intervention (P < 0.001). All charts had evidence of the first “A” (“asked”) both pre- and post-intervention, and the other four “A’s” all had statistically significant increases pre-to post-intervention.
The results demonstrate that, with training of physicians, compliance with the PHS tobacco guidelines can be greatly improved.
Five “A’s”; Smoker; Smoking cessation; Training physicians; Tobacco
Social discrimination may isolate drug users into higher risk relationships, particularly in disadvantaged neighborhood environments where drug trade occurs.
We used negative binomial regression accounting for clustering of individuals within their recruitment neighborhood to investigate the relationship between high-risk drug ties with various forms of social discrimination, neighborhood minority composition, poverty and education.
Results show that experiencing discrimination due to drug use is significantly associated with more drug ties in neighborhoods with fewer blacks.
Future social network and discrimination research should assess the role of neighborhood social cohesion.
Discrimination; drug use; social networks; neighborhood; segregation
Mobile health units are increasingly utilized to address barriers to mammography screening. Despite the existence of mobile mammography outreach throughout the US, there is a paucity of data describing the populations served by mobile units and the ability of these programs to reach underserved populations, address disparities, and report on outcomes of screening performance. To evaluate the association of variables associated with outcomes for women undergoing breast cancer screening and clinical evaluation on a mobile unit. Retrospective analysis of women undergoing mammography screening during the period 2008–2010. Logistic regression was fitted using generalized estimating equations to account for potential repeat annual visits to the mobile unit. In total, 4,543 mammograms and/or clinical breast exams were conducted on 3,923 women with a mean age of 54.6, 29 % of whom had either never been screened or had not had a screening in 5 years. Age < 50 years, lack of insurance, Hispanic ethnicity, current smoking, or having a family relative (<50 years of age) with a diagnosis of cancer were associated with increased odds of a suspicious mammogram finding (BIRADS 4,5,6). Thirty-one breast cancers were detected. The mobile outreach initiative successfully engaged many women who had not had a recent mammogram. Lack of insurance and current smoking were modifiable variables associated with abnormal screens requiring follow up.
Breast cancer; Mobile mammography; Underserved populations; Outcomes; Disparities