Feb 6 2014

Human Capital News Roundup: Avoiding aneurysms, healthy food, gun safety, and more.

Around the country, print, broadcast, and online media outlets are covering the groundbreaking work of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) leaders, scholars, fellows, alumni, and grantees. Some recent examples:

In a Huffington Post Latino Voices blog, Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program alumna Paloma Toledo, MD, discusses obesity among Hispanic Americans and how parents can influence children’s behavior, particularly regarding physical activity. She also flags influences that impede efforts to improve health for Hispanic youth: “In the U.S., food advertising on Spanish-language television is more likely to promote nutritionally-poor food than English-language advertising, hindering Hispanic children.”

During months when low-income individuals have access to Earned Income Tax Credit benefits, they spend more on healthy food, according to a study by RWJF Scholars in Health Policy Research alumna Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach, PhD. The study suggests that people with low incomes also buy more healthy food when their income increases, reports the Wall Street Journal Real Time Economics blog.

Health care professionals could make a vital contribution to educating children about the dangers of gun-related injuries, according to a study by RWFJ Clinical Scholar John Leventhal, PhD. He told Fox News: “Pediatricians and other health care providers can play an important role in preventing these injuries through counseling about firearm safety, including safe storage.”

A one-time screening for abdominal aortic aneurysms is effective and recommended for men aged 65 to 75 who are current or former smokers, according to a draft recommendation released by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force and reported by HealthDay. Controlling heart disease is key to lowering the odds for this type of aneurysm, said task force member Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, MD, PhD, a Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program alumna.

The Healthcare Economist blog reports on the Interdisciplinary Nursing Quality Research Initiative (INQRI) funded study “Scope-Of-Practice Laws for Nurse Practitioners Limit Cost Savings that Can Be Achieved in Retail Clinics.” The study was co-led by INQRI grantees Joanne Spetz, PhD, FAAN, and Stephen Parente, PhD, MPH, MS.

A study by Alexandra Kalev, PhD, an RWJF Scholars in Health Policy Research alumna, is a “wake-up call” on how corporate downsizing practices can reduce the number of women and minorities in management. Kalev told Cleveland.com and Phys.org that position and tenure, rather than performance evaluations, often are determining factors in downsizing. However, when performance was used as a deciding factor in layoffs, more female and Black managers were retained, the study found.

Tags: Clinical Scholars, Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program, Health Disparities, Human Capital News, Interdisciplinary Nursing Quality Research Initiative, Media Coverage, Nursing, Research & Analysis, Scholars in Health Policy Research