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  SEPTEMBER 09, 2011

ASPH News of Note
Comments Sought on Master’s-Level Public Health Preparedness and Response Model Version 1.0

Masters PreparednessASPH is pleased to announce, in conjunction with National Preparedness Month, the release of the Master’s-Level Public Health Preparedness and Response Model Version 1.0.  ASPH, working in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, developed this draft set of Master’s-Level Public Health Preparedness and Response competencies. Version 1.0 is available here for your review and comment.  Email comments and suggestions to by Friday, September 23.

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Public Health Research and Reports
UNC Finds Mexican Immigrants’ Diets Raise Risks of Obesity, Heart Disease

BatisAccording to a new study conducted by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health found that Mexicans who migrate to the United States choose to adopt most of the "American diet." Overall, Mexicans in the U.S. eat more saturated fat, sugar, salty snacks and processed foods, their eating habits are less healthy than when they were in Mexico. That could lead to higher rates of obesity and overweight, heart disease and certain cancers compared to people in Mexico, nutrition researchers cautioned. The study was published online September 1 in Journal of Nutrition.

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Berkeley Center Studies H1N1 Response in Hawaii and California

As part of National Preparedness Month, the Center for Infectious Diseases and Emergency Readiness (CIDER) at the University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health is working with state health department in Hawaii and local health departments in the San Francisco Bay Area to study the epidemiology and surveillance response during the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic as part of the Epidemiologic Networks in Action (EpiNet) study, one of several projects funded by a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Preparedness and Emergency Response Research Center (PERRC) grant.

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Pittsburgh Develops Database to Determine States’ Nuclear and Radiologic Preparedness

A project at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health is determining whether states have appropriate nuclear and radiologic preparedness and response plans in place to meet the directives of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Response Framework. According to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, there are 104 active licensed nuclear reactors in the U.S. The nuclear disaster in Japan has highlighted the urgency for countries with nuclear power plants to have well-defined, coordinated systems in place to prepare for and respond to nuclear incidents. 

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High Doctor FeesDrive Higher Health Care Spending in the U. S.

Dr. Miriam LaugesenResearch conducted at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health shows that physicians in the U.S. are paid more per service than doctors in other countries, and in some cases, double. There is also a far bigger gap between fees paid for primary care and fees paid for specialty care in the U.S., compared to other countries. According to the study, published in the September issue of Health Affairs, these higher fees in turn lead to higher incomes for U.S. physicians than those earned by their foreign counterparts, and are the main driver of higher overall spending in the United States on physicians’ services.

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ASPH Initiatives
ASPH Welcomes Accounting Manager and Fall Intern

On Tuesday, ASPH welcomed Mr. Bill Benz, CPA, to the staff as accounting manager. Mr. Benz has worked at a number of non-profits, including Amideast where he was chief financial officer and the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation where he was director of accounting & finance.

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2011 ASPH Annual Meeting: Online Schedule Posted and Registration Open

pictureThe 2011 ASPH Annual Meeting will be held Friday, October 28 through Wednesday, November 2, 2011. Committees and councils will meet at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill, 400 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20001. The ASPH Annual Meeting of the Deans, also at the Hyatt Regency, will be held on Monday, October 31. Registration is now required for the 2011 ASPH Annual Meeting; however, attendance at all open meetings, excluding the Summit on Undergraduate Education in Public Health, is free. For more information and to register, click here.

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ASPH Welcomes the Class of 2011 ASPH/EPA Environmental Health Fellows

pictureThis week, eight alumni from ASPH-member schools began their training at the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) through the ASPH/EPA Environmental Health Fellowship Program. Over the next 12 months, the fellows will train under the guidance of environmental health experts within EPA while contributing to efforts to advance the “Seven Priorities for EPA’s Future” – identified by Administrator Lisa Jackson as: Taking Action on Climate Change; Improving Air Quality; Assuring the Safety of Chemicals; Cleaning Up Our Communities; Protecting America’s Waters; Expanding the Conversation on Environmentalism and Working for Environmental Justice; and, Building Strong State and Tribal Partnerships.

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Funding and Award Opportunities
New Funding Opportunities

The Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine (SAHM) Proposals due November 15, 2011

These proposals are for innovative local public health demonstration projects that will improve our understanding of adolescent vaccination and ultimately lead to interventions to increase vaccination rates in the adolescent population. A brief letter of intent is required, and should be submitted by October 15, 2011.  Full applications are due November 15, 2011. For more information, click here.

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Fellowship and Training Opportunities
Commonwealth Fund/Harvard Fellowship in Minority Health Policy – Deadline: January 3, 2012

Supported by The Commonwealth Fund, administered by the Minority Faculty Development Program at Harvard Medical School, this unique fellowship is designed to prepare physicians for leadership roles in formulating and promoting health policies and practices that improve the access to high-quality care at the national, state, and /or local levels for minority, disadvantaged, and most vulnerable populations. The application deadline for the 2012-2013 fellowship is January 3, 2012.

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Latest from Schools of Public Health
Arizona's Global Health Institute Launches Undergraduate Research Program

saudi med students jumpingA group of 10 medical students from Saudi Arabia participated in the new Undergraduate Research Program through the Global Health Institute at the University of Arizona’s Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health in collaboration with the UA College of Medicine-Phoenix and Biomedical Sciences.

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Emory University and Peace Corps Foster Public Health in American Communities

picOn September 8, Emory University and the Peace Corps celebrated the Peace Corps 50th Anniversary with the event, “Honoring Our Public Health Legacy, Inspiring Future Generations.” Co-sponsored by the Rollins School of Public Health and the Atlanta Area Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, the event included a discussion with current Peace Corps Director Aaron Williams, and a panel session with key public health professionals who have served in each of the decades of Peace Corps’ history.

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New University of Michigan Students Go Straight to Work in “Practice Plunge”

picThe University of Michigan School of Public Health put new students out in the "trenches" of public health even before classes officially started. During the August 31 “Practice Plunge,: part of new student orientation, more than 300 students spent the day volunteering at community health sites in four Michigan counties (Wayne, Oakland, Washtenaw, or Genesee). The service-learning experience gave them a first-hand introduction to the kind of work they could be doing the rest of their careers.

Accompanied by faculty mentors, students spent the morning at one of five health departments, and the afternoon volunteering at a community public health site. One such site was the Catherine Ferguson Academy in Detroit, a school for pregnant teens and a working farm, where students helped in the fields and even cleaned out chicken coops. The school had been slated for closure but is now staying open. To read more, click here.

[Photo: University of Michigan School of Public Health Student]

Drexel University Welcomes New Director of Global Public Health Initiatives and Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

picDrexel University School of Public Health announced the appointment of Dr. Shannon Marquez to the position(s) of director of global public health initiatives and interim associate dean for academic affairs. Her faculty appointment is associate professor for the department of Environmental and Occupational Health.

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Nebraska Launches Campaign for Disaster Response in Action to Mark National Preparedness Month

picThe University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Public Health began National Preparedness Month by launching a marketing campaign for a national conference titled “Public Health and Medical Disaster Response in Action: The Joplin story.” The conference will bring together representatives from the Joplin, Missouri community response agencies and organizations, as well as the hospitals that were directly affected by the disaster, to tell their stories of how they responded to this catastrophic  tornado and share their lessons learned.

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UMass Prepares Graduate Students in Public Health Emergency Management

picThe University of Massachusetts Amherst School of Public Health and Health Sciences is all too aware of the need for national preparedness, which is why “Public Health Emergency Management” has been a part of its curriculum since 2002. This graduate-level course, one of the first of its kind and offered online through the MPH in Public Health Practice program, is instructed by Dr. Linda Landesman, author of the seminal book Public Health Management of Disasters: The Practice Guide.

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Tulane Encourages Preparedness in September and Throughout the Year

picThe Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine hosts various activities related to preparedness throughout the year, thanks to the South Central Preparedness and Emergency Response Learning Center (SCPERLC), a collaboration with the University of Alabama in Birmingham, and the school’s Department of Global Environmental Health Sciences.

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Helps Agencies Identify Reproductive Health Needs

Over the past two years, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health Center for Public Health Preparedness (CPHP) has worked with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of Reproductive Health to develop a toolkit that can be used by state and local health departments to assess unmet reproductive health needs following a disaster.

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Drexel to Launch Public Health Emergency Preparedness Training Program

The Center for Public Health Readiness and Communication (CPHRC) at the Drexel University School of Public Health, in partnership with the Drexel arm of the Pennsylvania Public Health Training Center, will be launching a “preparedness” training track for the public health workforce. CPHRC faculty and staff are working with representatives from local public health agencies and other stakeholders in Southeastern Pennsylvania to develop curriculum that is tailored to training needs identified through the assessment process of local initiatives like Project Public Health Ready and internal educational assessments. The target audience for these trainings will be mid-level public health professionals whose efforts will be needed to respond to major public health emergencies. 

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Washington Simulates Earthquake in University-wide Preparedness and Response Exercise

“Close your eyes and imagine that you are sitting in your office and the ground suddenly begins to shake." That was the beginning of an emergency preparedness and response tabletop exercise sponsored by the University of Washington School of Public Health, along with its Northwest Center for Public Health Practice and the Washington Health Sciences Administration. The exercised focused on a simulated 7.1 earthquake for faculty, staff, and students from the six health sciences schools at the university. 

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Iowa Names Olden 2011 Hansen Award Recipient

picThe University of Iowa College of Public Health honored renowned environmental health scientist and environmental justice advocate Dr. Kenneth Olden, this Thursday as the recipient of the 2011 Richard and Barbara Hansen Leadership Award and Distinguished Lectureship.

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Harvard School of Public Health Awarded $12 Million Grant to Improve Global Maternal Health

A new three-year, $12 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will support a Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) effort to significantly improve maternal health in developing countries. The project will be led by Ms. Ana Langer, professor of the practice of public health and coordinator of the Dean’s Special Initiative on Women and Health at HSPH.

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UAlbany Center Study: Health Care Jobs Continue to Grow in New York, Although Pace Slows 

The Center for Health Workforce Studies at the University at Albany School of Public Health published a report showing health care jobs continue to grow in New York, although at a slower pace. The report indicates that while jobs in health care continue to be a vital part of New York’s economy and have been steadily growing, that job growth appears to be slowing for a variety of reasons. “Health care appears to be recession-resistant but not recession-proof,” said Ms. Jean M. Moore, director of the Center and a lead author of The Health Care Workforce in New York, 2009: Trends in the Supply and Demand for Health Workers. To read the story, click here.

Increased Risk of Gastoresophageal Reflux Disease After Attacks on the World Trade Center

picFollowing the 9/11 terrorist attacks, gastoresophageal reflux disease (GERD) was reported by rescue and recovery workers as well as lower-Manhattan residents and local workers. While there is considerable evidence that asthma and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) were caused by WTC exposures, researchers at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, also establish that disaster-related environmental exposures may contribute to the independent development of gastroesophageal reflux symptoms (GERS). The findings are reported online this week in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

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New Lead in the Department of Health Policy at GW School of Public Health and Health Services

picDr. Paula Lantz, used to think that a career in academia meant a life disconnected from “the real world.” As a graduate student working full-time as an epidemiologist for a state health department, she imagined a future engaged in public policy research and a job at a think tank or a government agency like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Faculty & Staff Honors
LSU’s Moody Thomas Receives American Cancer Society’s Spirit Award

picDr. Sarah Moody Thomas, professor and director of the Behavioral and Community Health Sciences program at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center School of Public Health, received the Spirit Award at the August 20, 2011, at the American Cancer Society’s Hope Gala in New Orleans. The Spirit Award recognizes health care professionals and community members for their significant contributions to the fight against cancer.

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UNC’s Oberlander Calls for Controlling Health Care Costs

The new wave of fiscal conservatives voted into Congress during the 2010 elections are resetting the national agenda, and this rise of "austerity politics" has important implications for health policy, according Dr. Jon Oberlander, professor of health policy and management at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health and professor of social medicine in the UNC School of Medicine.

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Georgia Southern’s Peace Center Honored by Boys and Girls Club

The Boys and Girls Club of Bulloch County, Georgia recently dedicated the Karl E. Peace Center for Academic Achievement. The club created the center in recognition of Dr. Peace's contributions to the club, particularly to its academic programs.

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East Tennessee’s Hillhouse Wins University-wide Distinguished Faculty Award in Research

picDr. Joel Hillhouse, professor of community health, was recognized at the annual faculty convocation with the receipt of the 2011 Distinguished Faculty Award in Research. The award, which includes a medallion, a plaque, and a check for $5,000, is given to the outstanding faculty researcher at East Tennessee State University College of Public Health.

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New Faculty Appointments at University of Michigan SPH

picEffective July 1, 2011 Dr. Kyle Grazier, was named chair of the Department of Health Management and Policy at University of Michigan School of Public Health for a three-year term. Dr. Rich Hirth will serve as associate chair.

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Robins Named Director of Global Public Health

picEffective September 1, 2011, Dr. Thomas Robins became the Director of Global Public Health at the University of Michigan School of Public Health.  This new position reflects the importance of University of Michigan’s School of Public Health, and further contributes to the solution of global public health challenges that affect the well-being of a substantial fraction of the world’s population.

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UMass Amherst’s van Emmerik to be Inducted into the National Academy of Kinesiology

picDr. Richard van Emmerik, professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst’s School of Public Health and Health Sciences, will be inducted into the National Academy of Kinesiology (NAK) at the annual meeting, September 14-17, 2011, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Dr. van Emmerik joins professors Clarkson, Hamill, Kamen, Kent-Braun and Freedson as UMass Amherst members of the academy.

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ASPH Partners in Public Health
NIH Awards UTexas Professor to Study West Nile Virus

picDr. Kristy Murray, associate professor of epidemiology at The University of Texas School of Public Health, has been awarded a $1.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the effects of chronic West Nile Virus (WNV) infection on the kidneys and central nervous system.

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Public Health Resources
CDC and Partners Launch Chronic Disease GIS Exchange Resource

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention, in collaboration with the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors and Duke University, has developed the Chronic Disease GIS Exchange. This resource provides a community forum to share maps and mapping techniques. Visitors can use maps to document geographic disparities at the local level, inform policy and program development, enhance partnerships, and facilitate collaboration within agencies. Content is regularly updated with new maps and resources.

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E-Newsletter Resource

ASPH regularly provides members and Friday Letter readers with links to other electronic newsletters that may be of interest to the public health community. Links to e-newsletters will be added to a web page found at This week’s additions include:

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Upcoming Events
Emory HIV Prevention Program Focuses on Gay Male Couples

picA new HIV testing and counseling service developed by researchers at Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health supported by the MAC AIDS Fund kicks off on September 1 in Atlanta and Chicago.

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APHA National Student Assembly Meeting – October 29

The National Student Meeting (NSM), sponsored by the American Public Health Association (APHA)-Student Assembly, will be held on October 29 from 12:15-5:30 p.m. This free event provides attendees the opportunity to network with fellow public health students from across the country; hear directly from leaders in the field, such as Dr. Adewale Troutman and Dr. Janet Collins; and participate in a speed mentoring session

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"Public Health Reports"
Volume 126, Issue No. 5 September/October 2011

PHR CoverNew!
Volume 126
Issue 5
September/October 2011


Public Health Reports (PHR) is an informative and accessible resource for practitioners, teachers and students of public health. The journal provides important research and key discussions on the major issues confronting the public health community. Subscribe Today! Click here to advertise in the journal.

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Volume 126, Supplement 3: Data Systems and Social Determinants of Health

PHR SupplementNew!
Volume 126
Supplement 3
Data Systems and Social Determinants of Health


This supplement of Public Health Reports (PHR) focuses on data systems and their use in addressing social determinants of health (SDH)—the underlying economic and social conditions that influence the health of individuals and communities as a whole. Subscribe to PHR today! Click here to advertise in the journal.

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