Psychosocial and educational services for female college students with genital human papillomavirus infection.
CONTEXT: College-age women have a high risk of acquiring human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, which may have substantial psychosocial and physical effects. Young women who become infected need information and support from health care professionals, but little is known about providers' attitudes toward or provision of interventions for helping women cope with HPV. METHODS: A survey of 73 nurse practitioners and 70 physicians in college-based health clinics explored their perceptions of the need for psychosocial and educational interventions and their practices regarding such services for HPV patients. Analysis of variance and chi-square testing were used to examine differences by providers' type and gender. RESULTS: At least 86% of providers agree that HPV infection has a variety of psychosocial effects on young women, but only 54% spend at least 10 minutes providing education and counseling to all of their HPV patients. Roughly 80-90% routinely take a sexual history, explain the potential of HPV recurrence and discuss the risk of cancer with HPV patients; however, fewer than half always offer a variety of other interventions that could help patients cope with the diagnosis and promote preventive behaviors. Female providers are more aware of the psychosocial impact of HPV and the need for support than are male providers. However, nurse practitioners provide counseling and educational interventions more frequently than do physicians, even when gender is controlled for. CONCLUSIONS: College-based health providers need to improve the content of the counseling and education they offer to women with HPV, as well as the consistency with which they deliver those interventions. When they are unable to provide services, they should be able to refer patients elsewhere. (+info)
Quality of diabetes care in a university health center in Lebanon.
OBJECTIVE: To assess the quality of care provided to diabetic patients by family physicians in a university health clinic, using measures of glycemic and cardiovascular risk control as well as documentation of and adherence to World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines for diabetes primary care. DESIGN: Chart review of the previous year's medical notes for all identified diabetics in the practice over 2.5 years. RESULTS: Two-hundred and four diabetic patients were identified, with an estimated prevalence of 4.1%. The majority was type II diabetics, on oral hypoglycemic agents. Glycosylated hemoglobin was documented in 39.7% of patients, fasting plasma glucose in 99%, cholesterol in 93.1%, triglycerides in 91.2% and blood pressure in 85.8%; optimal control of these indicators was noted in 28.4%, 17.8%, 34%, 29.6% and 55.4% respectively. Fifty percent of the diabetics were referred for retinal checks. Physicians documented the presence of nephropathy in 46.8% and neuropathy in 59.6%; however, they documented patient instruction on foot care, diet, exercise and diabetes self-care poorly. CONCLUSION: There is a need for interventions to improve management and documentation in diabetes care in order to achieve early detection and prevention of complications. Developing a protocol for the clinic based on standard guidelines, and the use of flow sheets may be helpful in improving these intermediate indicators of quality of care. (+info)
Preventing meningococcal infection in college students.
The incidence of invasive meningococcal disease in adolescents and young adults of high school and college age has recently increased in the United States. Recent studies indicate that certain groups of college students are at increased risk. This has led to the recent Advisory Committee Immunization Practices recommendation that college freshman dormitory residents be provided information about meningococcal infection and the benefits of vaccination. Future studies will need to focus on the potential vaccine prevention of the increased risk of meningococcal infection in persons of high school age, particularly as new conjugate meningococcal vaccines become available. (+info)
The health of students in institutes of higher education: an important and neglected public health problem?
BACKGROUND: A survey of students in three UK higher education establishments was undertaken to obtain information about students' physical and emotional well-being, their attitudes to, and beliefs about health, and the prevalence of risk factors for future ill health. METHODS: Health was measured by the prevalence of longstanding illness and by the SF-36 health status measurement tool. Survey results were compared with equivalent data for 18- to 34-year-olds in the local population. The prevalence of long-standing illness was also compared with two national surveys. RESULTS: The survey achieved a 49 per cent response rate. More than one-third of respondents reported a long-standing illness, a higher prevalence than in all comparison surveys. Students scored significantly worse than their peers in the local population on all eight SF-36 dimensions. The greatest difference was for role limitations as a result of emotional problems. The main sources of emotional distress were study or work problems and money. CONCLUSION: The poor response rate in this survey dictates the need for caution in interpretation of the results. However, they suggest that the health of students is poor relative to that of their peers, and that their emotional health is more of a problem than their physical health. Public health practitioners might want to pay more attention to the health of this important and relatively neglected group. Worries about studies and money appear to be affecting students' academic work, and this should be of concern to higher education establishments. (+info)
Gender-specific health behaviors of German university students predict the interest in campus health promotion.
This cross-sectional study aimed to provide an assessment of the needs for health promotion in university freshmen, based on lifestyle variables and the interest in health-promoting activities. A questionnaire survey was performed using a sample of 288 male and 362 female university freshmen from 19 to 33 years of age. Male students were significantly more likely to engage in drug-taking behaviors, referring to alcohol and cannabis use, and had a higher body mass index. No gender difference was noted in the numbers of regular smokers. Preventive behaviors with respect to healthy nutrition and dental hygiene were reported more often in females, whereas the duration of physical activity per week and the use of condoms with a new sexual partner showed no gender difference. There was a strong demand for group health-oriented programs (79.5% of respondents). Substantial proportions of students had a high interest in individual counseling aiming at stress management (24.5%), healthy nutrition (19.3%) and prevention of sexually transmitted diseases (18.2%). Women expressed a greater interest in most programs than men. Multivariate regression analyses showed that a disposition for alcohol abuse was the strongest predictor of interest in health counseling in male students (p < 0.001), while psychosocial stress was the most important predictor in female students (p < 0.001). From the prevalence of health risks and the students' interest in health promotion programs it was concluded that there is a strong need for health promotion in the university setting in Germany. Results suggested that individuals at risk would probably benefit most from an individual counseling program. (+info)
Effects of a brief, theory-based STD-prevention program for female college students.
PURPOSE: To evaluate a brief, theoretically guided sexually transmitted disease (STD) risk-reduction intervention tailored to college-aged women. METHODS: The participants were 78 undergraduate females (M = 20 years; 76% European-American) who reported inconsistent condom use or multiple sexual partners. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three groups: (a) a one-session intervention based on the information-motivation-behavioral skills (IMB) model, (b) a one-session information-only intervention (INFO), or (c) a wait-list control (WLC) group. Consistent with Fisher and Fisher's (1992) IMB model, we predicted that risk reduction would be greater when information about HIV was supplemented with motivational enhancement strategies and skills training. To evaluate this hypothesis, groups were compared at the post-intervention assessment and at a 2-month follow-up using analyses of covariance and log odds ratios. RESULTS: At the post-intervention assessment, the IMB and INFO groups demonstrated increased STD-related knowledge. At 2-month follow-up, the IMB and INFO groups showed sustained STD-related knowledge, and the IMB group showed reductions in number of sexual partners compared to the WLC group. CONCLUSIONS: These results provide partial support for the hypothesis that an IMB model-based intervention leads to reductions in sexual risk behavior and suggest directions for future research. (+info)
Outbreak of bacterial conjunctivitis at a college--New Hampshire, January-March, 2002.
During February 1-14, 2002, approximately 100 students presented to a New Hampshire college's student health service with clinical signs of conjunctivitis (Figure 1). The cause of conjunctivitis was initially thought to be viral. However, because of the high number of cases, eye cultures were collected from 12 consecutive students; Streptococcus pneumoniae was isolated from cultures of all 12 students. The medical director of the student health service notified the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services about the outbreak and on February 22, the state health department requested assistance from CDC. This report summarizes preliminary results of the investigation of this outbreak, which indicate that an uncommon strain of pneumococcus caused this outbreak and that health-care providers should consider pneumococcus as a cause of conjunctivitis among college students. (+info)
Guidelines for school programs to prevent skin cancer.
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States. Since 1973, new cases of the most serious form of skin cancer, melanoma, have increased approximately 150%. During the same period, deaths from melanoma have increased approximately 44%. Approximately 65%-90% of melanomas are caused by ultraviolet (UV) radiation. More than one half of a persons lifetime UV exposure occurs during childhood and adolescence because of more opportunities and time for exposure. Exposure to UV radiation during childhood plays a role in the future development of skin cancer. Persons with a history of > or = 1 blistering sunburns during childhood or adolescence are two times as likely to develop melanoma than those who did not have such exposures. Studies indicate that protection from UV exposure during childhood and adolescence reduces the risk for skin cancer. These studies support the need to protect young persons from the sun beginning at an early age. School staff can play a major role in protecting children and adolescents from UV exposure and the future development of skin cancer by instituting policies, environmental changes, and educational programs that can reduce skin cancer risks among young persons. This report reviews scientific literature regarding the rates, trends, causes, and prevention of skin cancer and presents guidelines for schools to implement a comprehensive approach to preventing skin cancer. Based on a review of research, theory, and current practice, these guidelines were developed by CDC in collaboration with specialists in dermatology, pediatrics, public health, and education; national, federal, state, and voluntary agencies; schools; and other organizations. Recommendations are included for schools to reduce skin cancer risks through policies; creation of physical, social, and organizational environments that facilitate protection from UV rays; education of young persons; professional development of staff involvement of families; health services; and program evaluation. (+info)