MMWR News Synopsis for July 10, 2014
State-Specific Restaurant Menu–Labeling Use Among Adults — 17 States, 2012
CDC Media Relations
Overall almost 6 in 10 adults use menu labeling information when it’s available to make food and beverage choices in restaurants. Overall, 57 percent of adults 18 and older use menu labeling information when it’s available to decide what to order in restaurants, according to a new report from CDC. The report is based on information from respondents in 17 states who participated in the 2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey. In all 17 states, menu labeling use was highest among women, but patterns varied by age and race/ethnicity. Menu labeling can help patrons to select lower calorie options when eating out. Federal law requires restaurants with at least 20 locations nationally to list calorie information on menus and menu boards. To date, regulations to implement this law have not been finalized, but many restaurants have begun to voluntarily post calorie information. Targeted communication strategies may help improve awareness and use of menu labeling to benefit adults who want to make lower calorie choices at restaurants.
Prevalence and Correlates of Cryptococcal Antigen Positivity Among AIDS Patients — United States, 1986–2012
Enrique Rivero, Senior Public Information Officer
University of California, Los Angeles
The prevalence of cryptococcal infection in the United States is high enough (2.9 percent) that screening for cryptococcal antigenemia might be cost effective. Cryptococcal meningitis (CM) is the most common cause of AIDS-related mortality in sub-Saharan Africa, accounting for 33 percent to 63 percent of all adult meningitis in the region and over 500,000 deaths annually. In 2011, the World Health Organization made conditional recommendations for adults with a CD4 T-cell count < 100 cells/μL in areas with high prevalence. However, in the United States , no such screening recommendations exist despite an incidence between two to seven cases per 1,000 persons, and a mortality rate as high as 12 percent. Results from the study indicate a cryptococcal antigenemia prevalence of 2.9 percent in advanced AIDS patients, and within certain subgroups a prevalence as high as 6.4 percent— higher than published cost-effectiveness thresholds for screening in resource-limited countries.
Tobacco Use Among Youths — Argentina, 2007–2012
CDC Media Relations
Despite significant progress, tobacco use remains a threat to the health of Argentinian youths. Nearly a quarter of 13 to 15 year old youth are current smokers and almost half are exposed to secondhand smoke in public places. Additional efforts to reduce secondhand smoke exposure and prevent tobacco use among youths are needed. Results from the Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) indicate that the National Tobacco Control Law enacted in Argentina in 2011 had a significant impact in lowering the rate of tobacco use among Argentinian adolescents during 2007 and 2012. However, the smoking rates remain close to 25 percent. Implementation of comprehensive tobacco control strategies, including increasing the price of tobacco products, as recommended by the World Health Organization’s MPOWER package, could help achieve further declines in youth smoking in Argentina. High rates of exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) among youth underscore the need for continued efforts to educate the public about the dangers of SHS and expand protections from SHS in public places as well as private settings, such as homes and vehicles.