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(1/24) Utilization of health care services among adults attending a health fair in South Los Angeles County.

A bilingual survey was developed to collect information regarding socio-demographics, access to medical and dental care, health insurance coverage, perceived health status, and use of folk medicine providers from 70 adults presenting to a health fair in South Los Angeles County. Ninety-seven percent of respondents were foreign-born. Seventy-nine percent reported having no health insurance during the year prior to survey. Of the uninsured, 61 percent lacked a doctor visit and 76 percent lacked a dental visit during the previous year. The high cost of care was the most frequently cited barrier to seeking medical (58 percent) and dental (67 percent) care even when respondents felt it was necessary. Respondents who felt they needed medical attention but did not seek it had a lower perceived health status (7.0 +/- 2.2) than those who did (8.0 +/-2.0). Among respondents perceiving themselves in poor health, only 17 percent were insured. Relatively few respondents (7.2 percent) reported seeing a folk healer during the past year. Our results support the argument that the medically indigent in some localities face serious financial, as well as less salient, barriers to access. These local conditions reflect inadequate enforcement by local governments in correcting the difficult problems indigent populations face in accessing medical and dental care.  (+info)

(2/24) Providing consumer health information in the rural setting: Planetree Health Resource Center's approach.

Both lifestyle and geography make the delivery of consumer health information in the rural setting unique. The Planetree Health Resource Center in The Dalles, Oregon, has served the public in a rural setting for the past eight years. It is a community-based consumer health library, affiliated with a small rural hospital, Mid-Columbia Medical Center. One task of providing consumer health information in rural environments is to be in relationship with individuals in the community. Integration into community life is very important for credibility and sustainability. The resource center takes a proactive approach and employs several different outreach efforts to deepen its relationship with community members. It also works hard to foster partnerships for improved health information delivery with other community organizations, including area schools. This paper describes Planetree Health Resource Center's approach to rural outreach.  (+info)

(3/24) Health care revival renews, rekindles, and revives.

In a Black community in Boston, Mass, a community health center developed a faith-based initiative to improve the health of community residents. In partnership with a steering committee composed of community health advocates, church leaders, and community leaders, the community health center planned and implemented annual Health Care Revival meetings at which screening activities and dissemination of health information are integrated with inspirational singing and scripture readings. The success of the Health Care Revival initiative is demonstrated by an increased use of community health center services after each revival meeting, by participants' evaluations, and by an increase in the number of community health improvement projects begun as a direct result of the Health Care Revival initiative.  (+info)

(4/24) Screening, education, and associated behavioral responses to reduce risk for falls among people over age 65 years attending a community health fair.

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Because of the high risk of falling and the recognition that falling is a "geriatric syndrome," screening for risk of falls has become popular at community health fairs. The purposes of this study were to determine whether health fair screening and educational intervention would result in behaviors that could reduce the risk of falls and to determine whether adoption of risk-reduction behaviors differed between people over age 65 years screened as being at high risk for falls and those screened as being at lower risk for falls. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: The Berg Balance Test was used to classify fall risk in 68 individuals aged 57 to 89 years who were attending a community health fair. A score of 45 or lower led to a categorization of the person being at high risk for falls. All subjects were provided recommendations intended to reduce fall risk. Participants were interviewed by telephone 30 days after the screening to assess implementation of these recommendations. RESULTS: Seventy-two percent of the participants reported implementing at least one risk-reduction behavior. The high-risk group was more likely to implement risk-reduction behaviors than the low-risk group. DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: Screening and education in a health fair setting appear to promote behaviors that could reduce fall risk among elderly people. Future study with a control group that does not receive an educational intervention is needed to draw more definite conclusions about the value of this health promotion activity for fall prevention.  (+info)

(5/24) Health fair screening: the clinical utility of the comprehensive metabolic profile.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Health fairs are a common method used by providers and health care organizations to provide screening tests, including comprehensive metabolic profiles (CMPs), to asymptomatic individuals. No national organizations currently recommend the complete CMP as a screening test for asymptomatic individuals in primary care settings. This study evaluated the value of CMPs in a health fair setting by measuring the ability of a health fair CMP to predict new medical diagnoses among residents of a sparsely populated rural county. METHODS: Volunteer participants submitted fasting blood samples at a health fair conducted by a county health center in a county with 2,531 total residents. CMP values were determined to be "normal" or "abnormal" based on laboratory reference ranges and clinical judgment of the health center physicians. Medical records were reviewed 4 months later to determine if participants with abnormal CMP values had been diagnosed with new medical conditions as a result of the screening tests. Analysis was conducted to evaluate CMP test characteristics and determine whether demographic factors or specific CMP values predicted new medical diagnoses in the participants. RESULTS: Out of 478 health fair participants, 73 individuals had at least one abnormal CMP value. The most frequently occurring abnormal value was an elevated glucose level, with Hispanic participants significantly more likely to have this abnormality than whites. After all evaluation was completed, only about 1% of tested subjects had a new diagnosis as a result of the screening CMP test; most abnormal CMP tests did not result in a new diagnosis. The positive predictive value for an abnormal test resulting in a new medical diagnosis was 0.356. CONCLUSIONS: Comprehensive metabolic profiles have limited value as a screening tool in asymptomatic populations at health fairs.  (+info)

(6/24) Barriers to planning and conducting a screening: prostate cancer.

African American men participated in a screening initiative and completed the 22-item Barriers to Prostate Cancer Screening Checklist. Forty-three men received a digital rectal exam (DRE) and prostate specific antigen (PSA) laboratory test. The age of the males was M = 56.4 (range = 45-76) years; 47% were compliant with the American Cancer Society annual screening guidelines for high-risk individuals. Nineteen men from the screened group completed a 22-item Response to Barriers Checklist. The barrier ranked a "big problem" for not getting a prostate exam, and the highest by 32% (n = 6) of the sample was "Too many things going on in their lives." The lowest ranked problem by 100% of the participants was "Takes too long to get an appointment." Two individuals reported taking the over-the-counter supplement, saw palmetto. It is important that when planning a health screening in the community, both barriers and advantages be evaluated during the planning and before the implementation phase of the project.  (+info)

(7/24) Drive-by readings: a creative strategy for tuberculosis control among immigrants.

OBJECTIVES: We explored an innovative strategy for targeted testing and disease management among immigrant communities at risk for tuberculosis. METHODS: Taxi drivers were recruited at an airport holding lot to undergo tuberculin skin testing (Mantoux). After receiving their test results in a location convenient for them, drivers with positive results were referred for evaluation and treatment. We conducted baseline and follow-up assessments. RESULTS: Of 123 drivers who participated, two thirds (82) were at high risk for tuberculosis. Seventy-eight (63%) of the 123 returned for test readings; 62% of these drivers had positive test results. All drivers with positive results received a complete physician evaluation, but 64% of those evaluated were not treated for latent TB infection. Of the untreated drivers, 37.5% were at high risk. Systemic and physician barriers (e.g., lack of knowledge, erroneous beliefs regarding vaccines) affected adherence to evaluation and treatment. CONCLUSIONS: Targeted testing and treatment are important to the control of tuberculosis. The results of this study highlight the need for an aggressive physician educational campaign to identify latent tuberculosis infection and to tailor service delivery to meet the unique needs of foreign-born communities.  (+info)

(8/24) FDA Science Forum: advancing public health.

You don't have to know the difference between a virus and a bacterium to benefit from the Food and Drug Administration's 2005 Science Forum, an annual event aimed at sharing the science behind the agency's regulatory decisions.  (+info)