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Garland calls for action after several local children killed by gun violence

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WTAE - “We as adults are always trying to make programs or projects that we think that the kids need,” said BCHS’s RICHARD GARLAND. “But my strategy has always been going to the source, so I’d like to talk to the kids and see what they really need and what’s really on their mind.” 

Roberts says Medicare pay-for-performance didn’t deliver

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HEALTH LEADERS MEDIA - “As long as these programs do not account adequately for patient differences, which is very difficult to do, they will further deprive practices serving low-income populations of important resources,” said ERIC ROBERTS, assistant professor of health policy and management at Pitt Public Health and lead author of the study. 

Roberts’ study says when parents are on Medicaid, kids get better health care, too

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91.5 WESA - When a parent has health insurance through Medicaid, their child is 29 percent more likely to receive an annual physical exam. That’s according to a new study designed by HPM researcher ERIC T. ROBERTS, who calls this correlation between pediatric care and parental health insurance a spill-over effect. “We can’t look at individuals in isolation,” he explained. “When we help parents, we can help their kids.” 

Chaves-Gnecco receives CATCH Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics

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Alumnus DIEGO CHAVES-GNECCO (MMPH ’00), now associate professor at Pitt’s School of Medicine and founding director of the program SALUD Para Niños at UPMC’s Children’s Hospital, received the F. Edwards Rushton CATCH Award at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) National Conference and Exhibition. Named in honor of F. Edwards Rushton Sr., this award honors pediatricians who collaborate within their communities to increase children’s access to ... 

Van Panhuis on the myth of spacing out kids’s vaccines

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CONSUMER REPORTS - It’s unwise to delay or spread out vaccines, says EPI’s WILBERT VAN PANHUIS. The CDC bases the schedule on disease risks, vaccine effectiveness at specific ages, and the way vaccines may interact with each other. “To start mixing this up is really complicated and actually can be dangerous.” The MMR vaccine, for instance, is timed so that children receive it just as they’ve lost residual immunity from their mothers. And measles,... 

Dodson analysis of Pittsburgh’s open data informs opioid crisis responses

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DATA-SMART CITY SOLUTIONS, HARVARD - Using Pittsburgh’s public safety open data sets, HPM and PHDL’s ZAN DODSON has been advancing the region’s response to the opioid overdose epidemic by sharing his hot-spots research results to public health officials working to coordinate their responses to the crisis. 

Garland grant mobilizes trauma-response team for Thanksgiving Day rollout

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POST-GAZETTE - The second, $160,000 grant was awarded to the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences. RICHARD GARLAND, an assistant professor, is leading that effort and has hired two street outreach workers who are focusing on violence prevention through mediation and by building personal relationships with people in Wilkinsburg, Braddock, Rankin, Duquesne, McKeesport, and Penn Hills. 

Pitt Alumnus’ Eco Soap Bank makes him a CNN Hero

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CNN - Good. Clean. Hope. Pitt alumnus Samir Lakhani has been selected as a 2017 Top 10 CNN Hero for initiating a way to recycle hotel soaps for rural Cambodians, addressing issues of affordability and access to improve hygiene, thwart outbreaks of cholera and impetigo, and provide jobs for local women. This is public health! Click heading to cast your vote for him as Hero Of The Year! 

FDA approved digital pill: Gellad talks about pros and cons

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NPR - While warning of privacy and cost concerns, HPM’s WALID GELLAD explains the upside of the newly FDA-approved “big brother” digital pill. But he warns that there are broader privacy concerns when it comes to sensors that transmit health information. “We’ve seen time and time again that stuff that’s being transmitted ends up in the hands of people it shouldn’t. There are real concerns about data security.” 

2017 Evelyn H Wei Scholarship Winners

The award is based on contribution to public health, with emphasis on scholarship, leadership, and service. The 2017 winners are: ANDREW KROEMER, CHANTELE MITCHELL-MILAND, JENNA NELSON, ASHLEY SIER, BAIYAND SUN, and EMILY WASSON.   

2017 Evelyn H Wei Memorial Travel Scholarship recipients

Open to EPI students in good academic standing seeking travel funding to attend approved scientific meetings or events. 2017 winners are: KATHLEEN CREPPAGE, CHRISTINA CALAVARO, HSIN-HUI HUANG, HEMANT MAHAJAN, MEGAN MARRON, and SHARON WELBURN. Congratulations!   

Gellad on Trump’s pick to lead Department of Health and Human Services

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BLOOMBERG - Azar “is not the pick you would expect from someone who is going around calling the pharmaceutical industry a bunch of murderers,” HPM’s WALID GELLAD, who heads Pitt’s Center for Pharmaceutical Policy and Prescribing, said in a phone interview, referring to Trump’s “Getting away with murder” comment about the industry. 

Castle on when senior-care roommates are the abusers

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STAR TRIBUNE - “It sounds awful to say this, but it’s probably going to take a senator’s mother or father to be involved in an incident like this for policymakers to wake up and take notice,” says HPM’s NICHOLAS CASTLE. “Not a lot of folks realize that the biggest threat to your loved one’s safety…could be sleeping in the room next door.” 

Baumann documentary focuses on hygiene and menstruation for homeless women

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POST-GAZETTE - BCHS student SARAH BAUMANN’s first installment of her documentary series, “Cycle Series,” focuses on how homeless women deal with menstruation needs while on the streets. Costs, logistical issues and mental health issues are often unaddressed. “This is something that happens every month for 40 years of their lives. There’s no reason we should not be talking about this.” 

Jarlenski finds Medicaid expansion linked to smoking cessation

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UPI - “Smoking cessation is notoriously difficult to achieve,” said senior author MARIAN JARLENSKI, HPM. “The sizable increase we found in smoking cessation might lead to significant reductions in death and diseases caused by smoking, and the taxpayer-funded health care expenditures that come with treating them.” Results were published in the December issue of the journal Medical Care . 

Glynn receives Innovation Award for Pittsburgh Fatigability Scale

EPI's NANCY GLYNN won an Innovation Award for the sale of the Pittsburgh Fatigability Scale, a reliable measure of perceived fatigability in older adults that can serve as an adjunct to performance-based fatigability measures for identifying older adults at risk of mobility limitation in clinical and research settings. Congrats, Dr. Glynn!   

Pittsburgh: Best place to retire

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CNBC - Most of our students aren’t thinking about retirement, but the reasons Pittsburgh is a great place to live and study also make it the top city for retirement. Come visit...and stay! 

Gellad: A unique voice in the drug pricing debate

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GENETIC ENGINEERING & BIOTECHNOLOGY NEWS - Health Policy and Management’s WALID GELLAD is a policy researcher, primary care physician, director of Pitt’s Center for Pharmaceutical Policy and Prescribing, music composer(!), and all-around truth-seeker. His broad expertise has made him a go-to resource on the latest health issues. 

University of Pittsburgh architects a versatile HPC system to facilitate breakthrough research

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SCIENTIFIC COMPUTING - With the assistance of Pitt’s high-performance computing (HPC) system, EPI’s ASHLEY NAIMI conducts a randomized trial of 1,200 volunteers to determine if a small, daily dose of aspirin may help women to more easily achieve pregnancy and to carry a baby to term. “Our data-intensive research relies on machine learning algorithms to interpret the data we collect.... With the new processors in place, we can obtain meaningful in... 

Van Nostrand presents big data resources at APHA

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Although studies show that using information technology to analyze big health datasets and guide public health decisions can improve health equity, most community health center staff report receiving little to no training in health informatics. At the American Public Health Association (APHA) 2017 annual meeting, HPM’s ELIZABETH (BJERKE) VAN NOSTRAND shared four free, open-access public health informatics tools to aid public health workers prepar... 

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Simenson, Salerno, Saal-Ridpath selected for future health leaders program 

Simenson, Salerno, Saal-Ridpath selected for future health leaders program

PITT WIRE - Three students from Pitt Public Health were selected for the inaugural class of The Milken Institute’s Future Health Leaders Program. The students, ASHLEY SIMENSON (EPI '19), JESSICA SALERNO (IDM '20), and KAITLYN SAAL-RIDPATH (HPM '20), are among a dozen of fellows selected nationwid... (10/18/2018)
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Aging Institute leadership marches on 

Aging Institute leadership marches on

PITT WIRE - Baby boomers have long been known as one of the largest generations, and now they are living longer and healthier than any generation before, says Epi's ANNE NEWMAN, newly appointed clinical director of the Aging Institute of UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh. “We’re going through a... (10/09/2018)
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YNGBLKPGH. What does Pittsburgh mean to 140 young black professionals? 

YNGBLKPGH. What does Pittsburgh mean to 140 young black professionals?

PITTWIRE -   Pitt alum Brian Burley (BUS ’13G) continues to highlight young black leaders and create community ties through his www.YngBlkPgh.com site. This social enterprise started with his book “YNGBLKPGH” (Young Black Pittsburgh) which features more than 140 African-American professionals und... (07/23/2018)


Featuring the latest research, opportunities, and groundbreaking developments from CEPH-accredited schools and programs of public health. Review theFriday Letter submission guidelines then share your story ideas via publichealth.pitt.edu/share-news or contact phcomm@pitt.edu. 
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Pittsburgh finds current liver allocation system disadvantages children awaiting liver transplants 

Pittsburgh finds current liver allocation system disadvantages children awaiting liver transplants

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Children are at a considerable disadvantage when competing with adults for livers from deceased organ donors in the U.S. allocation system. “Using national, long-term data, our report is the first to demonstrate that the scoring system, on its own, dramatically underestimates ... (09/24/2018)
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Changing dynamics of the drug overdose epidemic in the United States from 1979 through 2016 

Changing dynamics of the drug overdose epidemic in the United States from 1979 through 2016

SCIENCE - In an effort to understand the epidemic dynamics and perhaps predict its future course, Pitt Public Health researchers analyzed records of nearly 600,000 overdose deaths. Dean DONALD BURKE, HPM's HAWRE JALAL, and colleagues concluded that the U.S. drug overdose epidemic has been inexorabl... (09/21/2018)
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Buchanich Finds 70K Opioid-Related Deaths Likely Went Unreported 

Buchanich Finds 70K Opioid-Related Deaths Likely Went Unreported

ASPPH FRIDAY LETTER - Several states are likely dramatically underestimating the effect of opioid-related deaths because of incomplete death certificate reporting, with Pennsylvania leading the pack, according to a new analysis by Pitt Public Health. “Proper allocation of resources for the opioid e... (07/19/2018)
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