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Prevalence of Self-Reported Postpartum Depressive Symptoms — 17 U.S. States, Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS), 2004–2005

PRESS CONTACT: National Center for Health Statistics
Office of Communication
(301) 458-4800

Postpartum depression is an important and prevalent public health issue. Health care providers should screen women for postpartum depressive symptoms through the first year after delivery. Screening for postpartum depressive symptoms should be incorporated into other established public health programs and clinical encounters that serve women during the postpartum period. During 2004–2005, the prevalence of self-reported postpartum depressive symptoms (PDS) in 17 U.S. states ranged from 11.7 percent (Maine) to 20.4 percent (New Mexico). However, certain groups of women had rates that were substantially higher. Younger women, women with lower educational attainment, and women who received Medicaid benefits for their delivery were more likely to report PDS. State and local health departments should evaluate the effectiveness of targeting mental health services to these mothers. Given that the prevalence of PDS among women who were physically abused before or during pregnancy ranged from 30.8 percent (Minnesota) to 52.7 percent (South Carolina), targeted screening and interventions for PPD could also be directed at these women and incorporated into existing public health programs that address women who were physically abused.

Preliminary FoodNet Data on the Incidence of Infection with Pathogens Transmitted Commonly Through Food — 10 States, United States, 2007

Division of Media Relations
(404) 639-3286

Although there have been significant declines in the incidence of some pathogens since 1996, these declines all occurred before 2004, indicating that further measures are needed to prevent foodborne illness and achieve the national health objectives. Foodborne illnesses are a substantial health burden in the United States. The Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet) quantifies and monitors the incidence of infections transmitted commonly through food by conducting active, population-based surveillance for laboratory-confirmed illnesses in 10 U.S. states. This report describes preliminary surveillance data and compares them with data for previous years. In 2007, the estimated incidence of infections caused by Campylobacter, Listeria, Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 (STEC O157), Salmonella, Shigella, Vibrio, and Yersinia did not change significantly, and Cryptosporidium increased compared with the previous 3 years. While there has been progress towards the 2010 national health objectives for the incidence of foodborne infections, this occurred before 2004 and none of the objectives were met in 2007.

Malnutrition and Micronutrient Deficiencies Among Bhutanese Refugee Children — Nepal, 2007

Division of Media Relations
(404) 639-3286

In long term camps, such as those in Nepal, the prevalence micronutrient deficiencies may be high even if the levels of acute malnutrition are low due to the lack of variety of nutrient rich foods. In a long term refugee camp situation providing calorically adequate rations to families is not enough. Approximately 106,000 Bhutanese refugees have been living in 7 camps in south-eastern Nepal since 1993. Previous surveys identified important micronutrient deficiencies and nutrition needs. At the request of UN agencies, we completed a survey in the camps to evaluate current situation. We collected data from 497 children and 413 mothers. We found 4.2 percent of children (6-59 months of age) with acute malnutrition and 78.8 percent (6-24 months of age) with anemia. The prevalence of acute malnutrition appears to be under control; however, given this is such a stable environment the high levels of anemia and stunting were concerning. These findings further support the need for micronutrient deficiencies to be monitored and addressed in long-term refugee settings.

Automated Detection and Reporting of Notifiable Diseases Using Electronic Medical Records Versus Passive Surveillance — Massachusetts, June 2006–July 2007

PRESS CONTACT: Dr. Richard Platt
Professor and Chair of the Department of Ambulatory Care and Prevention
Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
(617) 509-9971

Boston researchers created and piloted a computer program that automatically analyzes electronic medical records to detect contagious illnesses and report them to public health departments. The "Electronic Medical Record Support for Public Health" system, or "ESP," improves speed and accuracy of reporting diseases like tuberculosis and viral hepatitis and can replace the traditional system of reporting that required clinicians to complete forms and send them to health authorities. The ESP was installed at Atrius Health, a large health care organization in Boston, in January, 2007. Since then, ESP increased the number of reported infections, reporting 40 percent more cases of Chlamydia and 50 percent more cases of gonorrhea. It improved reporting whether the infected patient was pregnant and prescribed correct antibiotics. ESP currently reports on active tuberculosis, acute hepatitis A, B, and C, Chlamydia, gonorrhea, and pelvic inflammatory disease. ESP was sponsored by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



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