Healthy Communities – February 25, 2016

Aspirations and Strategies for Public Health

This short and inspirational article was published this month by the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Public health is responsible for extraordinary achievements over the past century, such as remarkable gains in life expectancy and substantial decreases in infectious disease mortality, and could make similar critical contributions to health in this century. Public health should be ascendant, but ample evidence suggests that it is on the defensive today, underappreciated, and underfunded. Government actions to improve the health of populations are widely suspect, as illustrated by the controversies involving efforts to curb soda container sizes in New York City, state and federal efforts to limit reproductive health rights, and global efforts to address climate change. Read more about achievements and challenges to public health aspirations in this article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

CDC’s Healthy Aging Program announces The Healthy Brain Initiative: National Partnerships, 2013–2018 Interim Progress Report.

This report highlights the progress that has been made on The Healthy Brain Initiative: The Public Health Road Map for State and National Partnerships, 2013-2018 released in 2013. The Road Map identifies 35 priority action items and provides guidance to state and local public health agencies and their partners to promote cognitive functioning, address cognitive impairment for individuals living in the community, and meet the needs of care partners.

Public health agencies and private, non-profit, and governmental partners at the national, state, and local levels are encouraged to work together on the actions identified in the Road Map that best fit their missions, needs, interests, and capabilities. This Dissemination Guide can be a helpful tool for promoting the Healthy Brain Initiative.healthy brain

 Comprehensive Cancer Control – Collaborating to Conquer Cancer

George Washington University (GW) Cancer Institute has released its Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month Social Media Toolkit (March 2016). This toolkit features resources to help public health professionals establish a social media strategy for Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month in March.

With nearly 75% of adults using social networking sites, comprehensive cancer control programs should leverage their social media presence to raise awareness about colorectal cancer prevention, screening, and survivorship. This toolkit can help public health professionals:

  • understand the functions and benefits of social media
  • establish a Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month social media strategy with appropriate messaging
  • manage social media accounts, as well as implement Facebook and Twitter best practices, and
  • evaluate social media efforts

Click on the link to download the toolkit.  Get your toolkit today!

For additional information and other technical assistance, contract Aubrey Van Kirk Villalobos, Director, Comprehensive Cancer Control; Avillalobos@gwmail.gwu.edu or (202) 994-2680.CRC

 New CDC Resources on Breastfeeding

Community-based strategies are an effective way to promote and provide support for breastfeeding initiation, duration, and exclusivity. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity recently developed a fact sheet on community-based support for breastfeeding. The fact sheet outlines program successes and lessons learned from the CDC Breastfeeding Supplement grant. Grantees and breastfeeding practitioners can use this document when implementing community-based breastfeeding programs or strategies.

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