Story Ideas 2013
For Cervical Health Awareness Month learn more about the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP)
Through the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides low-income, uninsured, and underserved women access to timely breast and cervical cancer screening and diagnostic services.
To improve access to screening, Congress passed the Breast and Cervical Cancer Mortality Prevention Act of 1990, which guided CDC in creating the NBCCEDP. Currently, the NBCCEDP funds all 50 states, the District of Columbia, 5 U.S. territories, and 11 American Indian/Alaska Native tribes or tribal organizations to provide screening services for breast and cervical cancer. The program helps low-income, uninsured, and underinsured women gain access to breast and cervical cancer screening, diagnostic and treatment services.
In 2000, Congress passed the Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Act, which gives states the option to offer women diagnosed with cancer through the NBCCEDP access to treatment through Medicaid. To date, all 50 states and the District of Columbia have approved this Medicaid option. In 2001, with passage of the Native American Breast and Cervical Cancer Treatment Technical Amendment Act, Congress expanded this option to American Indians/Alaska Natives who are eligible for health services provided by the Indian Health Service or by a tribal organization.
For National Birth Defects Prevention Month educate your readers on managing gestational diabetes
Diabetes is often diagnosed in women during their childbearing years and can affect the health of both the woman and her unborn child. Poor control of diabetes during pregnancy increases the chances for problems for the woman and her baby. Control of blood sugar during pregnancy can help prevent those problems.
Gestational diabetes is first recognized in a pregnant woman who did not have diabetes before pregnancy. It shows up mid-pregnancy; hence testing is usually done at 24–28 weeks of pregnancy. Often gestational diabetes can be controlled through eating healthy foods and regular exercise, butsometimes insulin is needed, too.
To help control gestational diabetes
Eat healthy foods. Eat healthy foods from a meal plan made for a person with diabetes. A dietitian or certified diabetes educator can help you create a healthy meal plan.
Tasty Recipes for People with Diabetes and Their Families »
Exercise regularly. Exercise is another way to keep blood sugar under control. It helps to balance food intake. After checking with your doctor, you can exercise regularly during and after pregnancy.
Learn more about physical activity during pregnancy »
Monitor blood sugar often. Because pregnancy causes the body’s need for energy to change, blood sugar levels can change very quickly. Check your blood sugar often, as directed by your doctor.
Get tested for diabetes after pregnancy. Get tested for diabetes 6 to 12 weeks after your baby is born, and then every 1 to 3 years. Gestational diabetes usually goes away soon after delivery. If not, the diabetes is called type 2 diabetes. Half of all women who had gestational diabetes develop type 2 diabetes later. It's important to continue to exercise and eat a healthy diet after pregnancy to prevent or delay getting type 2 diabetes.
To Find a Dietitian:
American Dietetic Association
www.eatright.org (click on "Find a Nutrition Professional")
What to Know About Heart Attacks?!
A heart attack, also called a myocardial infarction, occurs when a section of the heart muscle dies or gets damaged because of reduced blood supply. Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) occurs when a substance called plaque builds up in the arteries that supply blood to the heart (called coronary arteries). CAD is the main cause of heart attack. The five major symptoms of a heart attack are—
If you believe you or someone are experiencing the symptoms of a heart attack it is important to to call 9-1-1 immediately. Otherwise, further damage to the heart muscle can occur and an irregular heart rhythm may develop.
Bystanders who have been trained to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or use a defibrillator may be able to help the victim until emergency medical personnel arrive. At the hospital, doctors will then perform tests to determine whether a heart attack is occurring and decide on the best treatment.
Remember, it’s important to recognize these symptoms and call for help because the chances of surviving a heart attack are greater when emergency treatment begins quickly.
Visit these Web sites for additional information about heart-related conditions—
Hemophilia Awareness Month
Hemophilia is an inherited bleeding disorder in which the blood does not clot properly. This can lead to spontaneous bleeding as well as bleeding following injuries or surgery. Because the genetic mutation that causes hemophilia is carried in the X chromosome, men are more severely affected. However, some women (referred to as carriers of the hemophilia gene mutation) can also be affected.
Blood contains many proteins called clotting factors that help to stop bleeding. People with hemophilia have low levels of either factor VIII (8) or factor IX (9). Depending on how much clotting factor is in the blood, a person’s hemophilia may be mild, moderate, or severe.
The two most common types of hemophilia are:
Hemophilia occurs in about 1 of every 5,000 male births. Currently, about 20,000 U.S. males are living with the disorder. Hemophilia A is about four times as common as hemophilia B and about half of those affected by Hemophilia A have the severe form of the disorder. Hemophilia affects people from all racial and ethnic groups.
The severity of hemophilia that a person has is determined by the level of the clotting factor in the blood. The lower the clotting level, the more likely it is that bleeding will occur that may lead to more serious complications.
Hemophilia can result in:
The best way to treat hemophilia is to replace the missing blood clotting factor so that the blood can clot properly. This is done by infusing (giving medication by injection into a vein) commercially prepared factor concentrates.People with hemophilia can learn how to perform these infusions themselves so that they can stop bleeding episodes. By performing the infusions on a regular basis, people with hemophilia can also prevent most bleeding episodes.
Hemophilia is a complex disorder. Good quality medical care provided by doctors and nurses knowledgable about the disorder can help prevent serious problems. Often the best choice for this care is to visit a comprehensive Hemophilia Treatment Center (HTC). An HTC provides care to address all issues related to the disorder, and also, provides education that helps people with hemophilia stay healthy.
For more information:
TBI: What You Should Know
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a serious public health issue for Americans. Each year, TBI contributes to a substantial number of deaths and permanent disability. A TBI is caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. The severity of a TBI may range from "mild" to "severe".
According to research from CDC, approximately 3.5 million persons have a TBI in the United States. Of these individuals:
Previously referred to as the "Silent Epidemic," individuals with this injury may not have any visible scars, and symptoms may not show up or be noticed until hours or days later. Still, a TBI can cause short or long-term problems se¬riously affecting thinking, learning, memory, and/or emotions. A TBI can affect all aspects of an individual’s life, as well as that of their loved ones. This may include relationships with family and friends, as well as their ability to work or be employed, do household tasks, or drive a car.
The most common causes of TBI are from falls and car crashes. While there is no one-size-fits all solution, there are many ways to reduce the chances of a TBI, including:
- Wearing a seat belt every time you drive or ride in a motor vehicle.
- Never driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Avoiding activities that can distract you while you drive, such as using a cell phone, texting, and eating.
- Wearing a helmet and making sure your children wear helmets while riding a bike.
- Helping prevent falls by:
- Encouraging older adults to improve their balance and coordination by exercising.
- Using safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs to prevent young children from falling.
This March, in recognition of Brain Injury Awareness Month, CDC encourages you to learn more about TBI prevention at:
National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
March 10 is National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, a day to recognize the unique risks HIV and AIDS pose for women and girls, and to raise awareness of the disease's impact on them.
National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is a time each year when organizations and communities across the United States come together to offer support, encourage discussion, and teach women and girls about HIV prevention, the importance of getting tested, and how to live with and manage HIV and AIDS, if they are HIV-infected.
The rate of new HIV infections among black women was 20 times as high as that of white women andnearly 5 times as high as that of Latina women in 2010. The rate of new HIV infections among Latinas was more than 4 times higher than white women. The reasons why black and Latina women are more affected by HIV and AIDS than women of other racial and ethnic groups are not directly related to race or ethnicity, but rather to the circumstances that often place some of these women and girls at greater risk of becoming infected with HIV. These circumstances may include higher rates of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections in communities of color, limited access to high-quality health care, economic disadvantages, stigma, fear, and discrimination.
CDC is committed to ensuring that all women, especially populations that are most heavily affected, are armed with the tools necessary to prevent HIV. For example, Take Charge. Take the Test is a multi-faceted communication campaign designed to increase HIV testing among black/African American women. This effort, which is part of CDC's national Act Against AIDS communication campaign, helps African American women recognize their risk of getting HIV and the need for HIV testing. It also empowers them by providing information, encourages them to get tested, and enables them to take charge of their lives—whatever their HIV test result.
There are several ways you can reduce your risk for getting HIV. Below are a few things you can do to look out for yourself and stay healthy.
- Don't have sex. Abstaining from sex means not having any type of sex at all—oral, anal, or vaginal. Abstinence is 100 percent effective in preventing sexual transmission of HIV.
- Practice mutual monogamy. Being sexually active with only one person who has agreed to be sexually active only with you is one of the best ways to protect yourself from HIV. Your chances of getting HIV will also be lower if both of you have recently tested negative for HIV. Also, talk to your partner about sex and HIV. Learn as much as you can about their past behavior (sex and drug use) and consider the risks to your health before you have sex.
- Use a condom. Using a latex condom every time you have oral, anal, or vaginal sex reduces your risk of HIV. Other forms of birth control don't protect you from getting HIV. Male and female condoms are the only effective form of birth control that also helps reduce the risk of transmission for HIV and most other STDs. If you do have sex, use a latex condom every time.
- Don't share certain items. Don't share needles, syringes and related works or anything else that might bring you into contact with someone else's blood or bodily fluids. HIV is not transmitted by casual contact, so it's ok to shake hands or share dishes with someone who is living with HIV.
- Don't use drugs or alcohol with sex. Don't have sex when you are taking drugs or drinking alcohol because being high or intoxicated can make you more likely to make unsafe sexual decisions.
- Get tested for STDs. If you think you may have been exposed to another STD such as gonorrhea, syphilis, or chlamydia, get tested. Studies show that STDs can facilitate both transmission and acquisition of HIV. So get tested (and treated, if necessary) for STDs. Find an STD testing site near you by typing your zip code into the testing site locator.
Make National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day a day to get the facts about HIV—to learn how HIV is spread, if you are at risk, and how to protect yourself and your loved ones. Take this opportunity to also get tested. HIV testing is the first critical step to knowing your status and protecting your health as well as protecting your partner. In fact, CDC recommends that all adults and adolescents be tested at least once in their lifetime and frequent testing for those individuals who practice more risky behaviors. And start talking openly about HIV. Speak to everyone you know about HIV – friends and family, coworkers and neighbors, at work and at places of worship. Have ongoing and open discussions with your partners about HIV testing and risk behaviors.
For more information:
World Immunization Week: CDC Working 24/7 Worldwide
Every 20 seconds, a child dies from a disease that could be prevented with a safe and effective vaccine. Millions more children survive, but are left severely disabled. Vaccines have the power not only to save, but also transform lives by protecting against disease – giving children a chance to grow up healthy, go to school, and improve their lives. Vaccination campaigns sometimes provide the only contact with health care services that children receive in their early years of life.
Immunization is one of the most successful and cost-effective health interventions—it currently averts an estimated 2 to 3 million deaths every year in all age groups from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), and measles.
Immunization is a global health priority at CDC focusing on polio eradication, reducing measles deaths, and strengthening immunization systems. CDC works closely with a wide variety of partners in more than 60 countries to vaccinate children and provide technical assistance to ministries of health to strengthen and expand countries’ abilities to create, carry out, and evaluate their national immunization programs.
Too few people realize that the health of Americans and the health of people around the world are inextricably linked. Viruses don’t respect borders, so they travel easily within countries and across continents. By helping to stop vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs) globally, CDC is also helping to protect people in the United States against importations of VPDs from other countries.
For example, in 2011, there were 220 reported cases of measles in the United States—200 of the 220 cases were brought into the U.S. from other countries with measles outbreaks.
The most effective and least expensive way to protect Americans from diseases and other health threats that begin overseas is to stop them before they spread to our shores. CDC works 24/7 to protect the American people from disease both in the United States and overseas. CDC has dedicated and caring experts in over 60 countries. They detect and control outbreaks at their source, saving lives and reducing healthcare costs. In 2012, CDC responded to over 200 outbreaks around the world, preventing disease spread to the U.S.
CDC's global health activities protect Americans at home and save lives abroad. They reduce the need for U.S. assistance and create goodwill and good relationships with global neighbors.
To learn more visit:
Binge Drinking: A Serious, Under-Recognized Problem among Women and Girls
April marks Alcohol Awareness Month, a nationwide campaign intended to raise awareness of the health and social problems that excessive alcohol consumption can cause for individuals, their families, and their communities. Excessive drinking is a dangerous behavior for both men and women. This year, CDC is drawing attention to the risks to women's health from binge drinking, the most common type of excessive alcohol consumption by adults.
According to a new Vital Signs report, more than 14 million U.S. women binge drink about 3 times a month, and consume an average of 6 drinks per binge. Drinking too much, including binge drinking (defined for women as consuming 4 or more drinks on an occasion) results in about 23,000 deaths in women and girls each year and increases the chances of breast cancer, heart disease, sexually transmitted diseases, unintended pregnancy, and many other health problems.
Despite these risks, about 1 in 8 adult women and 1 in 5 high school girls binge drink. Binge drinking is a problem for all women and girls, but it is most common in high school girls and young women, whites and Hispanics, and among women with household incomes of $75,000 or more. Half of all high school girls who drink alcohol report binge drinking.
For more information visit:
Hepatitis Awareness Month
CDC is leading a national education campaign initiative called Know More Hepatitis. The campaign aims to decrease the burden of chronic viral hepatitis by increasing awareness about this hidden epidemic and encouraging baby boomers (people born 1945-1965) to get tested.
Know More Hepatitis is being featured in May as part of Hepatitis Awareness Month. This year, May 19th will serve as the second Hepatitis Testing Day in the United States. Since chronic hepatitis often does not cause any symptoms until serious liver damage has been done, testing for hepatitis is crucial. Find out if you are at risk by taking a 5 minute online Hepatitis Risk Assessment.
This online assessment is designed to determine an individual’s risk for viral hepatitis by asking questions based on CDC’s guidelines for testing and vaccination. The Assessment allows individuals to answer questions privately and print their recommendations to discuss with their doctor.
The word "hepatitis" means inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis is most often caused by one of several viruses, which is why it is often called viral hepatitis. In the United States, the most common types of viral hepatitis are Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C.
Unlike Hepatitis A, which does not cause a long-term infection, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C can become chronic, life-long infections. Chronic viral hepatitis can lead to serious liver problems including liver cancer. More than 1 million Americans are living with chronic Hepatitis B and 3 million with chronic Hepatitis C in the United States but most do not know they are infected. The vast majority of those infected with hepatitis C are baby boomers, or those born from 1945 through 1965. CDC recommends that everyone born during these years be tested for hepatitis C.
Both Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C can cause liver cancer and have contributed to the increase in rates of liver cancer in recent decades. Hepatitis C is a leading cause of liver cancer, which is the fastest-rising cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S., as well as the most common indication for liver transplants. Hepatitis C is also responsible for more than 15,000 deaths each year (a number that has nearly doubled over the past decade).
With early detection, many people can get lifesaving care and treatment that can limit disease progression, and prevent cancer deaths. To find out if you should be tested take the Hepatitis Risk Assessment.
In addition, this month’s issue of Vital Signs focuses on hepatitis C testing, and suggests that only half of those with hepatitis C receive complete testing for the virus. For more information on the release, please visit the CDC Newsroom.
For more information:
National Asthma Awareness Month
Asthma is one of the most common lifelong chronic diseases. There are almost 26 million people living with asthma. The disease affects the lungs, causing repeated episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and coughing. Although asthma cannot be cured, it is possible to manage asthma successfully to reduce and prevent asthma attacks, also called episodes. Successful asthma management includes knowing the warning signs of an attack, avoiding things that may trigger an attack, and following the advice of your healthcare provider. Using what you know about managing your asthma can give you control over this chronic disease. When you control your asthma, you will breathe better, be as active as you would like, sleep well, stay out of the hospital, and be free from coughing and wheezing. To learn more about how you can control your asthma, visit CDC's asthma site.
Asthma affects people of all ages and backgrounds. In most cases, we don't know what causes asthma, and we don't know how to cure it. Certain factors may make it more likely for one person to have asthma than another. If someone in your family has asthma, you are more likely to have it. Regular physical exams that include checking your lung function and checking for allergies can help your healthcare provider make the right diagnosis. With your healthcare provider's help, you can make your own asthma management plan so that you know what to do based on your own symptoms. Use your asthma medicine as prescribed and be aware of common triggers in the environment known to bring on asthma symptoms, including smoke (including second-hand and third-hand cigarette smoke), household pets, dust mites, and pollen. Limit or avoid exposure to these and other triggers whenever possible. The important thing to remember is that you can control your asthma.
For more information:
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