JANUARY/ FEBRUARY 2012POLICY CENTERNotes                                                                                  ...
PUBLICATIONS                                 Brown, Tyson H. 2011. “The Intersection and Accumulation                     ...
Ross LE, Fletcher A, Anderson MC, Meade, SAM, Powe, BD, Howard DL. “Complementary and   Alternative Medicine Use among Men...
EVENTS &                                           Academy Health’s 2012 National Health Policy Conference                ...
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Policy Center Notes January/February 2012


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Policy Center Notes is published bi-monthly by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College. The mission of the RWJF Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College is to provide leadership in health policy education along with research and reform on a national, state and local level while continually supporting the historic mission of Meharry Medical College to improve the health and health care of minority and underserved communities. For more information visit www.meharryhealthpolicy.org

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Policy Center Notes January/February 2012

  1. 1. JANUARY/ FEBRUARY 2012POLICY CENTERNotes Robert Wood Johnson Center for Foundation Health Policy at Meharry Medical CollegeHEALTH POLICYNewsPHYSICIANS’ PRESCRIPTION:ADDRESS UNMET SOCIALNEEDSA recent Robert Wood JohnsonFoundation survey of physiciansindicated that four out of fivephysicians agreed that unmet socialneeds are connected to declining SCHOLAR Spotlighthealth for many Americans. Witha substantial grant from e Physi- Class Matters: Achieving Healthcians Foundation Health Leads, aBoston organization, trained college Equity by Tackling Povertystudent volunteers in five cities to Written by Health Policy Scholars Orville Bignall II, Kevin Blythe, Kenisha Cantrell,“assist” physicians to “prescribe” food, Eleanor Fleming, and Piia Hansonhousing and fuel assistance, or otherresources for their patients – just asthey do medication. Research shows that poverty may have a greater impact on healthView full article here disparities than race. Research continues to point to a declining significance for race and instead suggests class and socioeconomicCOMBATTING OBESITY status as more efficacious determinants of health status within theAMONG LATINO CHILDREN community. Childhood economic status, not race, more directlyIn Texas and across the nation, half correlates with increased risks of chronic medical conditions such asof Latinos born today will developdiabetes. Salud America, e Robert diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Socioeconomic status is a moreWood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) easily defined metric for promoting health equity. It allows for specificResearch Network to Prevent Obesity environmental and social determinants of health to be more directlyamong Latino Children, engaged addressed.more than 1,800 researchers, com-munity leaders, policymakers andother stakeholders to increase the e recent global financial crisis has shed light on America’snumber of researchers and advocates evaporating “middle class” and income inequality has been implicatedseeking environmental and policy as a direct culprit of our nation’s worsening health status. As opposedsolutions to address Latino childhood to race, a new focus on addressing socioeconomic status allows clearlyobesity. identifiable aspects of a community’s infrastructure to be leveragedView full article here. to improve their health outcomes. Further, socioeconomic status CONTINUED ON PAGE 4 CONTINUED ON PAGE 2
  2. 2. PUBLICATIONS Brown, Tyson H. 2011. “The Intersection and Accumulation of Racial and Gender Inequality: Black Women’s Wealth.” The Review of Black Political Economy. Forthcoming. SCHOLAR Spotlight WORTH Noting CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 e Center for Health Policy’s Scholars and Fellows are a dynamic is a more easily measurable group of students from Meharry and Vanderbilt who explore characteristic than the subjective health policy as it relates to their primary fields of study. Read category of race. Race today is more about three Scholars and Fellows below. informed not by the scientific process, but by social politics; it Eleanor Fleming, PhD, DDS, a member of the is an enormously complex and first cohort of Health Policy Scholars, was selected to variable idea, grossly understated serve as an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Of- by the five standard choices often ficer at the Center for Disease Control. Dr. Fleming received a doctoral degree in Political Science from offered. erefore it makes little Vanderbilt University and graduated from Meharry’s clinical sense to base treatment School of Dentistry with a Doctor of Dental Surgery and therapeutic conclusions on a in May 2011. Fleming is the Center’s first scholar to subjective, self-reported variable secure a post graduate position, and most notably, a such as race. position in which she will draw on experiences gained as a Health Policy Scholar. For decades, sociologists such as William Julius Wilson and Piia Hanson, MSPH is among the first group of political scientists such as graduates in the Health Policy Scholars’ Program. Ms. Hanson is now the Women and Infant Health Carol Swain have suggested a Program Manager at the Association of Maternal and declining significance of race and Child Health Programs (AMCHP) in Washington, growing influence of class and D.C. In this new position, Ms. Hanson is respon- socioeconomic status as a way sible for the development, implementation, and of critiquing social policy. By evaluation of program and policy activities related to women’s and infant health and maternal and child shifting our focus to class and the health data and assessment through cooperative effects of poverty, these scholars agreements. have suggested that institutional and structural burdens have Sydney Jones, RWJF/Meharry Health Policy created the stressors that result Fellow is a second year doctoral student in the in the social disparities. It is our Political Science department at Vanderbilt Univer- recommendation that efforts to sity. During the summer of 2011, he experienced the eliminate health disparities focus life of a health policy scholar abroad as an intern in on addressing poverty rather race. the British Parliament in London, England. During his time in Parliament, Mr. Jones shadowed Parlia- ment member Rosie Cooper of the Labor Party and member of the Select Health Committee. e Health Excerpted from Class Matters: Achiev- Committee provides oversight and accountability on ing Health Matters by Tackling Poverty health and health care issues in the United Kingdom. http://www.meharryhealthpolicy.org/wp- content/uploads/Class-Matters1.pdfPOLICY CENTER NOTES JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2012
  3. 3. Ross LE, Fletcher A, Anderson MC, Meade, SAM, Powe, BD, Howard DL. “Complementary and Alternative Medicine Use among Men with a History of Prostate Cancer” Journal of Cultural Diversity: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 18(4), Dec. 2011.DIRECTOR’S DeskAs the Center embarks on its third year, I am delighted to reportthat our objectives have been achieved with tremendous success. ey include: development of a program focused on the recruitment, selection, and matriculation of African American and Hispanic students interested in health policy through collaborative PhD programs in economics, politcal science, and sociology at Vanderbilt University (VU); development of a scholars’ program in health policy that leads to the award of the certificate in health policy for Daniel L. Howard, PhD current MMC students; Executive Director development of a visiting professor program in health Robert Wood Johnson policy that involves nationally-regarded faculty; Foundation Center for implementation of a pilot project mini-grant program Health Policy at that supports health policy research for both MMC and Meharry Medical College VU faculty; establishment of a prominent National Advisory Board. e Center will continue to grow and thrive as we fulfull ourmission to increase the diversity of health policy leaders in thesocial, behavioral, and health sciences, (particularly economics,sociology, and political science) who will one day influence healthpolicy at the national level. To that end, we are committed toadvancing key initiatives such as the new Health Policy ProfessionalDevelopment Program and the Health Policy Alumni Program. ese are student-focused initiatives aiming to develop a newgeneration of national health policy leaders.We invite you to peruse our first edition of Policy Center Notes. is month, we spotlight several Scholars and Fellows who arealready on the path to becoming health policy leaders.We also lookat the impact of class on health disparities. is and all bi-monthlyeditions of Policy Center Notes will highlight opportunities andresources available to health policy enthusiasts.We value your support of the RWJF Center for Health Policy.POLICY CENTER NOTES JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2012
  4. 4. EVENTS & Academy Health’s 2012 National Health Policy Conference The first comprehensive look at year ahead in health policy.Opportunities February 13-14, 2012 in Washington D.C. For information http://www.academyhealth.org/Events2012 Annual Meeting Call for Abstracts Now Open HEALTH POLICY News e American Public Health Association is announcing the Call for Abstracts for the CONTINUED FROM PAGE 12012 Annual Meeting. e theme is Prevention and Wellness Across the Lifespan.Abstracts in all areas of public health are encouraged along with papers that focus SODA TAX WOULD SAVE LIVESon the Annual Meeting theme. All abstracts must be submitted online by February AND BILLIONS6-10, 2012 depending on the Section, SPIG, Caucus or Forum to which the topic Over the past 10 years, Americans drankis focused. All submissions will end at 11:59 pm (PST) on the due date listed on the more sugar-sweetened beverages thanCall for Abstracts. No late submissions will be accepted. APHA membership is not ever—as much as 13 billion gallons arequired for submission, but does imply a commitment to make the presentation at year—making these drinks arguably, thethe annual meeting October 27-31 in San Francisco, CA. single largest dietary factor in the currentTo submit abstract, click here: http://apha.confex.com/apha/140am/oasys.epl obesity epidemic. In a study conducted at Columbia University Medical Center and the University of California, San National Scholars Seminar Series Francisco, researchers estimated that a Leading experts lecture on provocative health and health higher, penny-per-ounce tax would result policy issues. e Seminar Series, a course for RWJF in an approximately 15% reduction in Health Policy Scholars, is also open to the general public. consumption and reduce the prevalence February 1, 2012 12:00-1:30 pm of obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular MMC, Learning Resource Center, Hall 1 disease. View full article here.Camara Phyllis Jones, MD, MPH, PhDResearch Director on Social Determinants of Health andEquity Centers for Disease Control and Prevention DIABETES HURTS YOUTH LEARNING AND EARNING National Scholars Seminar Series Having diabetes can carry many health February 15, 2012 12:00-1:30 pm consequences, but a new study in the MMC, Learning Resource Center, Hall 1 January issue of Health Affairs shows that it also highly influences a young person’s ability to complete high school,Senator William Frist, M.D, Physician & Former US Senator be employed, and earn a living wage.RWJF Center for Health Policy National Advisory Board Member High school dropout rates among young people with diabetes are six percentage points higher than for young peopleAcademy Health’s 2012 National Health Policy Conference without the disease. What’s more, youngFebruary 13-14, 2012 adults with diabetes can expect to earnNow in its 12th year, the National Health Policy Conference is the nation’s first $160,000 less in wages over their work-comprehensive look at the year ahead in health policy, providing an insider’s view ing lives compared to peers withoutinto the nation’s health policy agenda. is conference brings together more than diabetes.800 senior health care decision makers from academia, government, foundations,hospitals and the health care industry. More information can be found here. View full article here.Policy Center Notes is published bi-monthly by the Robert Wood Johnson Founda-tion Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College. e mission of the RWJFCenter for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College is to provide leadership inhealth policy education along with research and reform on a national, state and locallevel while continually supporting the historic mission of Meharry Medical Collegeto improve the health and health care of minority and underserved communities.For more information visit www.meharryhealthpolicy.orgPOLICY CENTER NOTES JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2012