The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) now has free, accurate information about different neurological disorders in Spanish. The information can be found online at http://espanol.ninds.nih.gov/. The site includes information on stroke, Parkinson’s Disease, autism, and epilepsy.
NINDS site in Spanish
NLM’s new Drug Information Portal
Last week, the National Library of Medicine announced a new online resource for researchers, healthcare professionals, and the general public, called the NLM Drug Information Portal. Like other “federated” search tools, the idea is a one-stop, simple search interface that pulls together results from a wide variety of disparate databases. In this case, the user is presented with a single search box to enter the name of the drug (generic or commercial) — but the results are returned from a wide variety of federal government sources, including:
- MedlinePlus (Drug information & consumer health information)
- AIDSinfo (HIV/AIDS treatment)
- LactMed (Effect on breastfeeding)
- HSDB (Reviewed biological and physical data)
- Dietary Supplements Labels Database (Ingredients and label information)
- Medline/PubMed (References from scientific journals)
- TOXLINE (References from toxicological journals)
- DailyMed (Manufacturers drug label)
- ClinicalTrials.gov (Clinical trials)
- PubChem (Biological activities and chemical structures)
- NIAID ChemDB (Biological activities against HIV/AIDS and other viruses)
- ChemIDplus (Toxicological and chemical resources)
- Drugs@FDA (Information from the US Food & Drug Administration)
- DEA (Information from the US Drug Enforcement Administration)
- USA.gov (Other government resources)
Now, that’s a fine collection of resources to be able to search all at once! Thanks, NLM — and thanks to our colleagues over at the EBM & Clinical Support Blog for the tip about the new site.
Oral Longevity Site
The American Dental Association (ADA) and GlaxoSmithKline have partnered to create an initiative called Oral Longevity. The initiative has been designed to create awareness about the oral health needs of older americans. There are consumer health resources and dental resources for the dental health professionals. You can also request a DVD and download the brochure by going here: http://www.ada.org/ada/orallongevity/brochure.asp
Presidential Proclamation – National Health Information Technology Week
President Barack Obama has declared the week of September 11-16, 2011 as National Health Information Technology Week. See the official proclamation at Presidential Proclamation – National Health Information Technology Week. In addition, the 2008 Federal Strategic Health IT Plan has been updated to meet the new realities for health IT and IT policies. See more on the Federal Strategic Health IT Plan: 2011-2015 at the Health IT Buzz Blog Post.
Public and Medical Library Team Up for Consumer Health Information
Working in partnership with the Alamo Area Library System (AALS), the UT Health Science Center Briscoe Library recently provided a health information presentation for the Universal City Public Library. Promoting the use of public libraries for consumer health information is part of an effort to address the information needs of growing numbers of Texas residents who are being diagnosed with diabetes. National Library of Medicine resources such as MedlinePlus and NIHSenior Health were demonstrated for attendees as examples of reliable sources of diabetes information.
Responding to the Epidemic: Strategies for Improving Diabetes Care in Texas
An alarming rate of increase is projected for the incidence of diabetes in Texas over the next 30 years. Based on statistics from the Office of the State Demographer, Texas will see an increase of 156,000 new cases of diabetes each year. A newly released report from the Texas Health Institute (THI) recommends a plan of action to curtail these predictions. According to the report, “The State Demographer projects a quadrupling of the number of adult Texans with diabetes from approximately 2.2 million in 2010 to almost 8 million by 2040.” Counties in the Texas border region are expected to be particularly hard hit. Given that rates of diabetes in Hispanic populations are higher than the national average, “There are a large number of Hispanic residents at high-risk of developing diabetes, particularly in South Texas, where obesity rates are very high and insurance coverage is very low.”
Return of the “Health Lotería” #13: El cantarito
First of all, your humble blogger and “lotería caller” wishes to ask your indulgence for the long and unexpected break in the “Health Lotería;” a series of conflicts and technical problems interfered with the lotería for a while. The good thing is that we’re back — and hopefully for a good while this time.
This week — from 19 to 25 October 2008 — is National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week. The image of the “cantarito” from the lotería reminds us that toxic lead can not only reach us in work materials, old pipes or house paint, but also in clay or ceramic containers like some handcrafts for sale in Mexico and along the border, as well as home remedies such as “greta” and “azarcón”. Lead is a silent poison — high levels of lead in the blood do not show obvious symptoms until they are already causing permanent damage in the brain and body. Children run an even greater risk from lead because they can be affected by smaller quantities of lead than adults.
Please read the following documents to understand what are the possible sources of lead that could affect you and your family. If you believe that it’s possible that you or a member of your family could have been exposed to lead, it’s very important that you or your family member goes to the doctor and gets tested for the level of lead in the blood.
- From MedlinePlus: Lead poisoning (summary and medical encyclopedia)
- From the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency): A video program (6 min 38 sec)
- From the DSHS (Department of State Health Services): “Lead in Your Food and Home Remedies.”
- From the TCEQ (Texas Commission on Enviromental Quality): Lead Poisoning: What are the Sources? What are the Risks?
Spanish-Language Health Resources
The Maternal and Child Health Library at Georgetown recently announced a new knowledge path with links to Spanish-language resources, including web sites, publications and health hot-lines.
Spot the Block
Some of the more recent efforts in the promotion of health literacy focus on the use of food labels for nutritional information. This would seem to be a simple method for consumers to make informed nutritional decisions. Consumers, however, often do not or cannot use food lables to full advantage. For some ‘food for thought’, check out the newly redesigned website for the National Agricultural Library’s Food Nutrition Center (FNIC). The site has a wealth of information and visual aids to assist consumers in getting the most out of reading food labels. The site also features a program to promote food label reading called Spot the Block. Although aimed at teens, the program and materials could be adapted for other ages as well.
There is even a health literacy assessment tool, available in English and Spanish, based on an ice cream nutrition label. Named the Newest Vital Sign (NVS), the tool poses six questions that test the ability of an individual to read and use the information on the label to make health related nutritional decisions. Take the test and see what you think!
State Rankings of Health
The report America’s Health Rankings 2008 is now available from the United Health Foundation. It reports that Texas is now ranked 46th in the nation – dropping from 37 in 2007. Only Tennessee, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Louisiana ranked lower than Texas. According to the report, Texas faces challenges due to limited access to primary care, a high rate of uninsured population, a high percentage of children in poverty, and a high incidence of infectious disease.
The complete national report or state-by-state reports can be downloaded from http://www.americashealthrankings.org/2008/index.html.