Kids Living in ‘Stroke Belt’ Not More Likely to Have Stroke: Study
Children who live in a region of the U.S. known as the “stroke belt” are not more likely to be hospitalized for stroke than those who don’t live there, a new study finds. The finding suggests that the increased risk of stroke death among adults in the stroke belt is due to factors that develop later in life, the researchers concluded. (HealthDay News, 2/12)

Electronic Beats Paper Record in Peds Trauma Resuscitations
Electronic documentation produces more complete records of pediatric trauma resuscitations than paper documentation, according to a study published in the Journal of Emergency Nursing. Researchers compared a random sample of 200 trauma resuscitations documented by paper with a random sample of 200 trauma resuscitations documented electronically. (Physician’s Briefing, 2/13)
Study Finds 1 Million Juvenile Gang Members in U.S.
More than 1 million young people in the U.S. (about two percent of youth) belong to a gang, which is more than three times the number estimated by law enforcement, according to a new study. The researchers found that these young people come from all types of backgrounds and that gang involvement is greatest at age 14. The study aims to challenge many popular demographic stereotypes. (Psych Central, 2/13)
Study evaluates recent sleep trends for U.S. adolescents
Sufficient sleep is critical for adolescent health, yet the number of hours slept per night has decreased among teenagers in the U.S. over the last 20 years. A new study found that female students, racial/ethnic minorities, and students of lower socioeconomic status are particularly affected, with teens in these categories less likely to report regularly getting seven or more hours of sleep each night. (News Medical, 2/16)
Support for sleeping in? Half of parents favor later school start times for teens
Should teenagers be able to hit the snooze button one more time before school? Ask their parents and half say they would support later school start times, according to the new University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health. More schools across the country are exploring delayed school start times as research shows benefits for adolescents’ physical and mental health. (Health Canal, 2/16)
For Teens, Sleep Habits Run in the Family
To understand teenagers’ sleep habits, look at their parents, a study suggests. When parents go to bed, how long they sleep and when they wake up may help to shape their children’s sleep patterns during adolescence, according to the study, in the February issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health. The study involved 336 pairs of teens and parents, ages 15 and 42 years old, on average, respectively. (Wall Street Journal, 2/16)
Study shows that plant-based vegan diet may lower heart disease risk in obese children
Obese children who begin a low-fat, plant-based vegan diet may lower their risk of heart disease through improvements in their weight, blood pressure, body mass index, cholesterol levels, insulin sensitivity, and high-sensitivity C-reactive, according to new  research. The four-week study compared a plant-based vegan diet to the AHA diet in 28 obese children with high cholesterol between the ages of 9 and 18. (News Medical, 2/16)
Racial gaps in diabetes not tied to social, economic status
Social and economic status does not explain the racial gaps in the care and outcomes of kids with type 1 diabetes, according to a new study. The finding suggests researchers look to other factors that may explain the racial gap in type 1 diabetes care, such as the perceptions of doctors and families, write the researchers in the journal Pediatrics. (Reuters, 2/16)
Young Adult Sore Throat Could Be Due to F. Necrophorum
Fusobacterium necrophorum is responsible for one in five sore throats in young adults, a new study suggests. To estimate the prevalence of F. Necrophorum, reearchers studied 312 students who sought treatment for sore throat at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Student Health Clinic and compared them to students who did not have a sore throat. (Physician’s Briefing, 2/17)
Global obesity response is ‘unacceptably slow,’ according to experts
A new six-part series published in The Lancet claims that progress is “unacceptably slow” in tackling the ongoing obesity epidemic and demands new ways of thinking. The series notes that although rates of child obesity have started to level off in certain cities and countries, no country has seen declining rates of obesity on a population-wide level. (Medical News Today, 2/19)
Research Finds No Cancer Link With Pimecrolimus
Pimecrolimus (Elidel) cream used to treat eczema in children does not appear to increase the risk of cancer, according to a new study. Researchers looked at 7,457 children in the U.S. who were given an average of 793 grams of pimecrolimus cream to treat eczema and were followed for 10 years. The research was funded by Montreal-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, the manufacturer of Elidel cream. (Physician’s Briefing, 2/19)              



Has this nasty flu season finally peaked?
Several months into a nasty flu season with one of the least effective vaccines in recent memory, federal health officials say the worst is finally over. “There’s a lot of flu season left, but it’s clear we’re decreasing and that flu season has peaked,” said Dr. Michael Jhung of the CDC. The CDC released its latest data indicating that the epidemic has started to decline nationwide. (CBS News, 2/13)
SGR fix carries $174.5B price tag, CBO says
Replacing Medicare’s sustainable growth rate formula, as proposed in bipartisan legislation last year, would cost $174.5 billion from fiscal year 2015 to fiscal 2025, according to a Congressional Budget Office report. Through the two identical pieces of legislation introduced in the U.S. Senate and House in 2014, lawmakers are attempting to implement a permanent replacement to the SGR. (Becker’s Hospital Review, 2/13)         
Lawmakers introduce ‘vaccines save lives’ resolution
More than 90 members of Congress from both parties introduced a resolution on Friday affirming that vaccines save lives, amid a measles outbreak that has sparked a national debate. The resolution “affirms vaccines and immunizations save lives and are essential to maintain the public health, economic and national security of the people of the United States.” (The Hill, 2/13)

U.S. agency fixes problem hampering Obamacare applications
A day before the open enrollment deadline for private health coverage under Obamacare, some consumers were unable to submit applications because of “intermittent issues” with income verification, HHS said on Saturday. The agency, which announced the problem in a statement on Saturday afternoon, said nearly six hours later that it had been resolved ahead of the February 15 deadline. (Reuters, 2/14)
Legislation introduced to extend CHIP funding
With funding for CHIP set to lapse in September, legislation has been introduced that would extend funding for the program through 2019. In the House, U.S. Reps. Gene Green (D-Texas) and Frank Pallone Jr. (D-N.J.) introduced the CHIP Extension and Improvement Act, which would extend funding for the program through 2019 and make a number of program improvements aimed at increasing state flexibility with CHIP. (Becker’s Hospital CFO, 2/16)
The Challenges of Palliative Care for Children
Palliative care is increasingly used to help seriously ill adults and seniors. Now medical centers are creating teams that specialize in a more challenging task: delivering palliative care for young children. Palliative-care teams complement the usual array of physicians, specialists and clinicians, helping patients by managing pain, treating symptoms and ensuring that they have the best possible quality of life. (Wall Street Journal, 2/16)
Measles Cases Continue to Rise Across the United States
The number of measles cases in the United States has reached 141 patients in 17 states and DC, federal health officials reported. The majority of people who’ve gotten measles in the current outbreak were unvaccinated, the agency said. Most of the cases -- 113 cases, or 80 percent -- have been linked to the outbreak that started at the Disney parks in California, officials said. (HealthDay News, 2/17)

California health officials urge measles vaccine before spring travel
California public health officials, grappling with a measles outbreak that has already sickened 113 people statewide, urged residents to vaccinate themselves and their children before traveling internationally over spring school break. More than 150 people have been diagnosed with measles across the U.S., many of them linked to an outbreak that authorities believe began when an infected person visited Disneyland. (Reuters, 2/17)
Some 11.4 million Americans have enrolled in Obamacare: White House
Some 11.4 million Americans enrolled in private health insurance through Obamacare during the open enrollment period, the White House said in a tweet. “The Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, is working. It’s working better than we anticipated, certainly working a lot better than many of the critics talked about early on,” President Barack Obama said in a video linked to the White House tweet. (Reuters, 2/17)

California measles outbreak possibly linked to Philippines, officials say
A measles outbreak that has sickened at least 113 people in California after surfacing at a Disneyland resort involves a virus strain that also caused an outbreak in the Philippines, but it is too early to tell if the two waves of illness are related, health officials said. California Department of Public Health researchers, in a report to federal officials, said the source of the illness has not been identified. (Reuters, 2/18)



International health groups say AIDS No. 1 killer of adolescents in Africa and 2nd globally
Global health organizations said Tuesday that AIDS is now the leading cause of death for adolescents in Africa, and the second leading cause of death among adolescents globally. Road accidents and injury are the number one killer of adolescents globally. About 120,000 people aged between 10-19 years died of AIDS-related illnesses in 2013, the eight international organizations said. (US News and World Report, 2/17)
Africa: Youth Must Be Central to New Campaign to End Aids
Leaders from around the world met in Nairobi on 17 February, to launch a new global campaign to tackle adolescent AIDS, the second leading cause of death among teens globally. The ‘All In’ to end adolescent AIDS campaign, led by UNAIDS, UNICEF and partners seeks to address the fact that rates of HIV are declining in all other age groups, but adolescents are being left behind. (All Africa, 2/18)
South Africa: Strategy to Deal With Youth’s Sexual Health
The cabinet has approved the National Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Framework Strategy, says Minister in the Presidency for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Jeff Radebe. The policy focuses on advancing and promoting health outcomes, especially the sexual and reproductive health of young people. (All Africa, 2/19)
Ghana: Parliament urges improved pediatric cancer care
Parliament on Wednesday called for the establishment of pediatric cancer centers across the country and the increase in the capacity of specialist physicians in view of the rising incidence and mortality of childhood cancer cases. They have also urged government to consider including pediatric cancer treatment to the National Health Insurance Authority’s essential medicines and treatment list. (Vibe Ghana, 2/19)



AHRQ Online Continuing Education Available for Wide Range of Health Professionals
AHRQ Online CME/CE provides inter-professional accreditation and CE awards focusing on patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR) for physicians, physician assistants, pharmacists, nurse practitioners, nurses, case managers, health education specialists and medical assistants. New modules are in video and monograph formats. (AHRQ, 2/17)


Register for SAHM annual meeting today
Join the adolescent health community in Los Angeles in March 2015, for SAHM’s annual meeting. The program offers innovative research, clinical workshops and discussion forums for attendees of diverse disciplines. View the meeting program and registration information.


STDs in Space? STD Prevention Science Series Webinar
Maps are a straightforward surveillance tool, helping us to identify areas with the greatest disease burden. But can maps and related spatial methods do more for us? Can these tools provide insights into the underlying epidemiology of STDs and provide guidance for intervention? Join this CDC webinar with William C. Miller, MD, PhD, MPH on March 12, 2015: 11:00am – 12:00pm ET. (CDC, 2/19)
The Time is Now - Adolescent Friendly Reproductive Health Care
Join NYPATH and Physicians for Reproductive Health for a webinar on providing adolescent friendly sexual and reproductive healthcare.  This updated module is designed for medical providers serving adolescents and provides key evidence-based information about providing streamlined health services to adolescents.  The webinar will be held on March 13, 2015 from 12:00 – 1:00 PM EST.  CME credits available. (NYPATH, 2/17)


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