Health & Society Scholars program alumnus Dominick Frosch, PhD, (’05) and 2006 awardee of the Investigator Awards in Health Policy, published “Persistent Barriers and Strategic Practices: Why (Asking About) the Everyday Matters in Diabetes Care” in the June 14, 2013, issue of The Diabetes Educator. Although the challenges that low-income patients face in managing their diabetes may seem insurmountable at times, there are several ways that health care providers can help reduce the burden of these challenges, including tailoring their recommendations to incorporate the everyday socioeconomic environment of patients and engaging in clear, open communication with them.

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Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College
Damien Cuffie, MPH, (’12) a Health Policy Scholar and dental student at Meharry, along with a team of colleagues, published an article in the May 2013 issue of AIDS Patient Care and STDs. The article, “Linking and Retaining HIV Patients in Care: The Importance of Provider Attitudes and Behaviors,” evaluates patient perceptions of provider attitudes among HIV-infected persons within a statewide public hospital system in Louisiana.

Health Policy Doctoral Fellows Helena Dagadu, MPH, (’10) Erika Leslie, (’11) and Courtney Thomas, (’10) each presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association. The meeting took place August 10­–13, 2013, at the Hilton New York Midtown and Sheraton New York Hotels in New York City. Dagadu’s presentation was titled “Challenges in Addressing Mortality From Communicable and Noncommunicable Diseases in Sub-Saharan Africa.” Leslie presented “Discrimination, Racial Group Identity, and Depressive Symptoms: Consequences of Within-Group Variation Among Black Americans.” Thomas presented “Racial Self-Awareness: Investigating the Effects of Race-Class Identity Conflicts for the Black Middle Class.”

Health Policy Doctoral Fellow Courtney Thomas (’10) presented a paper at the Society for the Study of Social Problems (SSSP) Annual Meeting. The SSSP conference was held August 9–11, 2013, in New York City. The paper, titled “The Black Middle Class: New Insights for the Study of Racial and Ethnic Inequality in the United States,” was presented in the “Identity: Rethinking Ethnicity and Race in the 21st Century-THEMATIC” session.

Clinical Scholars
RWJF/U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Clinical Scholar alumnus Ryan Greysen, MD, (’09) as well as Yale program site Directors Marjorie Rosenthal, MD, MPH, (’03)and Georgina Lucas, MSW, published an article in the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved on improving quality of discharge care for the homeless. Four recent Clinical Scholar alumni, Ryan Greysen, MD (’09, Veterans Affairs Scholar); Adam Richards, MD, MPH, (’08); Sidney Coupet, DO, MPH(’11); and Aasim Padela, MD, MSc (’08); as well as a Yale program site faculty member, Mayur Desai, PhD, MPH, published an article regarding their survey of U.S. physicians and their experiences in global health. The study was published in Globalization and Health.

RWJF/U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Clinical Scholar alumnus Stephen Henry, MD, (’09) published a study, “The Effect of Discussing Pain on Patient-Physician Communication in a Low-Income, Black, Primary Care Patient Population,” in the July 2013 edition of The Journal of Pain. The study found that while patients are uneasy about discussing pain with their doctors, discussions generally do not harm patient-provider rapport.

RWJF/ U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Clinical Scholar alumna Shreya Kangovi, MD, (’10) published a study on low-income patient preference for hospitals over ambulatory care as the July cover story in Health Affairs. Stories related to the study ran in publications including Kaiser Health News, Modern Healthcare, Medscape, the Courier-Journal.

Clinical Scholar alumna Kelly Kyanko, MD, MHS, (’09) and Yale program site Co-Director Leslie Curry published a qualitative study, “Patient Experiences With Involuntary Out-of-Network Charges,” on June 6 in the journal Health Services Research. The study found that about 3 million patients in the United States are hit with unexpected out-of-network charges.

In an Annals of Internal Medicine publication, Clinical Scholar alumna Tara Lagu, MD, (’05) explored how patients in wheelchairs receive less preventive care than those who are not handicapped. Former national advisory committee member Lisa Iezzoni, MD, MSc, published an editorial commenting on the study. The study was also covered in the New York Times.

In a recent Health Affairs article, Clinical Scholar Katherine Neuhausen, MD, (’11) describes her efforts in a grassroots movement led by students and resident physicians that saved a key safety-net hospital in Georgia. Now they are moving to expand Medicaid more broadly through the state under the Affordable Care Act.

Clinical Scholar alumni Anisha Patel, MD, MSPH, MSHS, (’06) and Michael Cabana, MD, MPH, (’97) published a study in the July issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, “Sociodemographic Characteristics and Beverage Intake of Children Who Drink Tap Water.” The study found that sociodemographic disparities in tap water consumption may contribute to disparities in health outcomes, and that improvements in drinking water infrastructure and culturally relevant promotion may help to address these issues.

RWJF/U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Clinical Scholar Matt Press, MD, (’08) was lead author on a study in the June issue of Health Affairs titled “Limits of Readmission Rates in Measuring Hospital Quality Suggest the Need for Added Metrics,” and was senior author on a Viewpoint in the June 12 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association titled “Encouraging Patients To Ask Questions: How To Overcome ‘White-Coat Silence.’

Investigator Carol Ashton, MD, MPH, (’07) and Health Policy Fellows alumna (’94) and 2007 awardee of the Investigator Awards in Health Policy Research program Nelda Wray, MD, MPH, have a new book published by Oxford University Press titled, Comparative Effectiveness Research: Evidence, Medicine, and Policy. According to the authors, this is the first book to examine the science underlying a major component of the Affordable Care Act of 2010.

Investigator Awards in Health Policy Research
Investigator Sara Rosenbaum, JD, (’00) published a Perspectives piece in the July 4 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine titled “Using Medicaid To Buy Private Health Insurance: The Great New Experiment?”

Investigator Susan Wolf, JD, (’11) published a Point/Counterpoint in Science titled “Patient Autonomy and Incidental Findings in Clinical Genomics.”

Health & Society Scholars
Jason Block, MD, (’07) published a study in the May 23, 2013, issue of the British Medical Journal titled Consumers' Estimation of Calorie Content at Fast Food Restaurants: A Cross-Sectional Observational Study.” The study investigated the estimation of calorie (energy) content of fast food meals by adults, adolescents, and school-age children. The study concluded that people eating at fast food restaurants underestimate the calorie content of meals, especially large meals.

Alison Buttenheim, PhD, (’09) published a study in the May/June 2013 issue of Nursing Research: “Underestimation of Adolescent Obesity.” This study assesses the implications of selective nonresponse in self-reported height and weight. Findings of the study suggest that adolescent obesity surveillance and prevention efforts must take into account selective nonresponse for self-reported height and weight, particularly for younger teens. Results should be replicated in a nationally representative sample.

Carolyn Cannuscio, ScD, ScM, (’05) published a study in the June 2013 issue of Preventing Chronic Disease: “Community-Generated Recommendations Regarding the Urban Nutrition and Tobacco Environments: A Photo-Elicitation Study in Philadelphia.” Overweight, obesity, and tobacco use are major preventable causes of disability, disease, and death. In conclusion, participants were well-versed in the relevance of nutrition and physical activity to health, and the need for multilevel interventions. Their responses suggested community readiness for change. In contrast, participants’ more limited comments regarding tobacco suggested that prevention and control of tobacco use were perceived as less salient public health concerns.

Natalie Crawford, PhD, (’11) published a study, “The Relationship Between Discrimination and High-Risk Social Ties by Race/Ethnicity: Examining Social Pathways of HIV Risk,” in the Journal of Urban Health (June 8, 2013). High-risk social ties portend differences in opportunity for HIV exposures and may contribute to racial/ethnic disparities in HIV transmission. Discrimination may affect the formation of high-risk sex and drug ties and has not been explored as a possible explanation for these persistent disparities. Discrimination is associated with high-risk social ties among all racial/ethnic groups. Crawford and colleagues found that different forms of discrimination within racial/ethnic groups are associated with risky social ties. This is a relatively unusual angle on the topic of health disparities.

Michelle Frisco, PhD, MA, (’03) and Jason Houle, PhD, (’11) published a study, “Weight Change and Depression Among U.S. Young Women During the Transition to Adulthood,” in the June 9, 2013, issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology. Their findings indicated that respondents who experienced significant weight gain were at risk of depression onset. The study concluded that weight gain and obesity are risk factors for depression onset during the transition to adulthood. Policies prioritizing healthy weight maintenance may help improve young women’s mental health as they begin their adult lives.

Laura Gottlieb, MD, MPH, (’09) published a study, “Collecting and Applying Data on Social Determinants of Health in Health Care Settings,” in the April 29, 2013, issue of JAMA Internal Medicine. Gottlieb proposes a framework for how social determinants interventions in the health care system can be construed across three tiers—patient, institution, and broader population—and describes ways to collect data and target interventions at these levels.

Jennifer Karas Montez, PhD, (’11) published “Explaining the Widening Education Gap in Mortality Among U.S. White Women” in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior (June 2013, published on May 30). Over the past half-century, the gap in mortality across education levels has grown in the United States, and since the mid-1980s, the growth has been especially pronounced among White women. The reasons for the growth among White women are unclear. The authors investigated three possible explanations—social-psychological factors, economic circumstances, and health behaviors—for the widening education gap in mortality from 1997 to 2006 among White women ages 45 to 84, using data from the National Health Interview Survey Linked Mortality File (N=46,744; 4,053 deaths).

Hedwig Lee, PhD, (’09) and Margaret Hicken, PhD, (’10) published a study, “Cumulative Social Risk and Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Obesity During the Transition to Adulthood,” in the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Undeserved. As the causes of the stark racial/ethnic disparities in adolescent obesity in the United States are largely unknown, Lee and Hicken examine the role of social risk in racial/ethnic disparities in obesity.

Briana Mezuk, PhD, (’07) co-authored a study, “Depression, Neighborhood Deprivation, and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes,” which was published in the May 22, 2013, issue of the Health and Place journal. Neighborhood characteristics have been associated with both depression and diabetes, but little attention has been paid to whether the association between depression and diabetes varies across different types of neighborhoods.

Scholar Selena Ortiz (’13) published a study, “Race/Ethnicity and the Relationship Between Home Ownership and Health,” in the American Journal of Public Health (April 2013). Ortiz and colleagues investigated whether race/ethnicity moderates the association between home ownership and health, and whether this association is the same for racial/ethnic minorities as for non-Latino Whites. The results show that race/ethnicity significantly moderates the effect of home ownership on self-perceived health status, incidence of general health conditions, and health trade-offs, including delays in accessing medical care and obtaining prescription medication.

Aric Prather, PhD, (’10) published a study in the Journal of Psychiatric Research titled “Gender Differences in the Prospective Associations of Self-Reported Sleep Quality With Biomarkers of Systemic Inflammation and Coagulation: Findings From the Heart and Soul Study.” As systemic inflammation is proposed as a putative mechanism underlying the link between poor sleep and cardiovascular disease, the aim of the study was to investigate associations of self-reported sleep quality with biomarkers of inflammation and coagulation implicated in coronary heart disease, and to explore whether these associations differ between men and women.

Laura Wherry, PhD, (’12) published a study in the July 18, 2013, issue of the American Journal of Public Health. The study, “Medicaid Family Planning Expansions and Related Preventive Care,” found that the expansions increased the proportion of low-income women receiving a Pap test by 2.8 percentage points and a clinical breast exam by 1.6 percentage points, each within the last year. On their own, these numbers may not sound high, but when combined with estimates of participation in Medicaid family planning services under the expansions, they imply a 19–percent increase in Pap test receipt and a nearly 11–percent increase in clinical breast examinations among women enrolled in the programs.

New Connections
New Connections will be well-represented at the 2013 American Psychological Association’s Annual Convention in Honolulu, Hawaii, from July 31–August 4, 2013. Alumni Thema Bryant-Davis, PhD, (’07) Annie Belcourt, PhD, (’07) and Kevin Nadal, PhD, (’10) as well as Deputy Director Edith Arrington, PhD, will present the session, “New Directions in Ethnic Minority Research: Perspectives From the RWJF New Connections Program.” Alumnus Enrique Neblett, PhD, (’10) will present the session, “Masculinity, Purpose, and Personal Growth Among Urban-Residing African American Men,” as well as three poster presentations. Current New Connections grantee Amanda Sullivan, PhD, (’11) will present the session, “Straight Talk About Faculty Careers: Perspectives From Early Career Trainers,” as well as three poster sessions.

Public Health Law Research-New Connections grantee Kimani Paul-Emile, PhD, (’11) presented a session at the Law and Society Annual Conference, which was held May 30–June 2, 2013. Paul-Emile presented on the panel session, “Race, Science, and Law.”

Nurse Faculty Scholars
Jodi Ford, PhD, RN, (’10) assistant professor in the College of Nursing and faculty associate for the Initiative in Population Research at Ohio State University, co-authored “Neighborhoods and Infectious Disease Risk: Acquisition of Chlamydia During the Transition to Young Adulthood” published in the March 2013 issue of Urban Health.

In “The Orb Speaks for Infants” published on July 1, featured a device used to assess pain in premature infants developed by Martin Schiavenato, PhD, RN, (’09) associate professor at the Washington State University College of Nursing in Spokane.

Scholars in Health Policy Research
Julie Berry Cullen, PhD, (’99) published “What Can Be Done To Improve Struggling High Schools?” in the Spring 2013 edition of the Journal of Economic Perspectives.

Hilary Levey Friedman, PhD, (’09) published “Pediatric Sports Injuries” in the American Journal of Sports Medicine in June 2013.

Christopher Parker, (’05) co-authored a book, Change They Can’t Believe In: The Tea Party and Reactionary Politics in America, published by Princeton University Press. The book rigorously examines the motivations and political implications associated with today’s Tea Party, arguing that this isn’t the first time a segment of American society has perceived the American way of life as under siege.