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February 2013 E-NEWS

Table of Contents

UPHA Public Health Webinar

UPHA Annual Conference Apr 9-10, 2013

UPHA Cancer Pre-Conference: Women's Health

An Open Message to All UPHA/APHA Members from President Joyce Gauffin

UPHA Call for Resolutions

UPHA Call for Nominations

What sequestration means for Utah

Utah Public Health Association Day at the Legislature

UPHA Board Member Spotlight: Heather Borski

Student Spotlight: Coach Alba Project

Save the Dates!

   
 
 

UPHA Public Health Webinar

On February 15, the Utah Public Health Association offered the first in a series of informational webinars for public health practitioners and students throughout the state of Utah. Legislative experts, Deb Turner and Kathy Froerer, discussed the must current legislative priorities up on Utah's Capitol Hill. Valuable advice was given to help public health practitioners learn how to advocate for public health programs and services and how to effectively engage in the this important process.

Please join us in celebrating Public Health Week participating in our next webinar "Mastering Public Health: Essentials for Leadership Development, scheduled for April 5, at 10:00am.

Space is limited. Reserve your Webinar seat now at: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/307776738

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UPHA Annual Conference Apr 9-10, 2013

Join your colleagues and our industry’s leaders at the 2013 Public Health Conference for Utah, April 9-10 (preconference April 8) at the Ogden Eccles Conference Center in Ogden.

This year's theme is “Embrace the Future—Renew Public Health” and features keynote presentations from Dr. Regina Benjamin, Surgeon General of the United States; Dr. Jon Fielding, Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health; Dr. Pamela S. Perlich, Senior Research Economist at the University of Utah; as well as Joyce Gaufin, president-elect for APHA and Utah Governor Gary Herbert.

From continuing education opportunities to professional networking and development, the 2013 UPHA conference is your key to continued success in your field! For more information or to register, visit the conference website at www.upha.org/conference.


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UPHA Cancer Pre-Conference: Women's Health

This UCCP Annual Conference is held as a Pre-Conference in association with the Utah Public Health Association (UPHA) Conference. On-line registration opening soon!

Plan on being there to hear Donna Costa, DHS, OTR/L, FAOTA professor in the Division of Occupational Therapy at the University of Utah present on Mindfulness-Based Interventions for Depression, Stress and Mental Health. She will share how the mind and the body are intimately connected and that thoughts, beliefs, emotions and stress all have a great impact on health and illness. Come to hear how you can help your clients face the stresses of their own lives and have better health.

Date: Monday April 8, 2013
Location: Ogden Eccles Conference Center, 2415 Washington Blvd, Ogden UT 84401
Time: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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An Open Message to All UPHA/APHA Members from President Joyce Gauffin

If you have ever wanted to become more involved or engaged in the American Public Health Association, consider nominating yourself to serve on one of the many APHA standing committees and boards. Each year, the President-elect and Executive Director make "Leadership Appointments" to fill open positions on the Action Board, Science Board, Education Board, and a variety of committees including : Awards Committee, The Nation's Health Advisory Committee, Committee on Membership, Annual Program Planning Committee (at-large member) and more. Go to http://www.apha.org/about/gov/leadership/, and follow the links for General Considerations and Full List of 2013 Open Positions to learn more about the process and to see current openings. You can apply by clicking on 2013 Leadership Recommendation Form. The deadline for submitting your electronic nomination form is March 29, 2013. Individuals appointed this year will begin service at the end of the 2013 Annual Meeting in Boston. You must be a member of APHA to qualify for these appointments.

Another avenue to leadership service is to run for an elected office in APHA. Information on this process is available at: http://www.apha.org/about/gov/nominations/. Click on Position Descriptions or Nomination Form to see what is involved. Three people will be elected to four-year Board Member terms, and another candidate will also be elected to serve a one-year term that was created when I was elected last fall. If you choose to run for a position, please be sure to seek the support of UPHA—it makes a difference in the nomination process as well as helping with your campaign. The deadline to apply is March 29, 2013. If you have questions or would like more information, please contact me at gaufin646@gmail.com.

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UPHA Call for Resolutions

The dictionary defines resolution as a formal expression of opinion or intention made, usually after voting, by a formal organization, a legislature, a club, or other group.

Now is your opportunity to propose resolutions to be considered by the UPHA membership at our annual business meeting. If you have a resolution you would like the membership to consider, please send a draft to Eric Edwards no later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 1. An example of a previously passed resolution is attached below.

A spokes person for the resolution has to be a current paid member of UPHA and will be expected to present the resolution during the annual business meeting.

Please contact Eric Edwards if you have any questions: 801-851-7097.


Increasing Baby Your Baby/Medicaid Eligibility Levels for Pregnant Women

Submitted by:  Stephen P. McDonald, MSS

WHEREAS, women who receive prenatal care are more likely to have access to screening and diagnosis tests that can help to identify problems early; services to manage developing and existing problems; and education, counseling, and referral to reduce risky behaviors like substance use and poor nutrition. Such care may thus help improve the health of both mothers and infants
WHEREAS, timing and entry into prenatal care often reflects factors also associated with low birthweight, including poverty, maternal age, education, and marital status.
WHEREAS, in 2006, 78.0 percent of Utah women received early prenatal care, which is below the Healthy People 2010 objective of 90 percent, and 3.9 percent of women had late (3rd trimester) or no prenatal care at all.
WHEREAS, lack of insurance is a barrier to prenatal care
WHEREAS, one in six women aged 18 to 49 in Utah – 98,000 – reported being uninsured in 2006. Of these women, 40 percent had family incomes below 200 percent of poverty.
WHEREAS, uninsured women receive fewer prenatal services and report greater difficulty in obtaining needed care than women with insurance, an Institute of Medicine study concluded
WHEREAS, Medicaid is the major public source of financing health care services provided to pregnant women, infants, and children
WHEREAS, Utah has the lowest income eligibility level for pregnant women (133% of Federal Poverty Level) in the nation (tied with Alabama, Idaho, South Dakota, North Dakota and Wyoming) and forty-one states and the District of Columbia have eligibility thresholds at 185 percent or higher, 20 of which have rates at 200 percent or higher.
WHEREAS, by raising the eligibility threshold for pregnant women from 133 percent to 185 percent it is estimated that an additional 5,000 pregnant women could be eligible for BYB and Medicaid.

BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT:
The Utah Public Health Association supports increasing Medicaid’s eligibility level for pregnant women in Utah.
The Utah Public Health Association encourages its members to support efforts to increase the Medicaid/Baby Your Baby eligibility levels for pregnant women.


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UPHA Call for Nominations

Have you ever wanted to know the inner workings of UPHA? Interested in leadership opportunities with UPHA? Consider running for election this April!

UPHA is seeking members who would be interested in running for the following board member/officer positions (one vacancy each):

Vice President - This is a four year term advancing from Vice President, President-Elect, President, and Immediate Past President (1 year terms for each).

Treasurer - Perform accounting and budgeting functions, including managing income and expenditures, preparing financial reports and assisting in budget preparation. This is a two year term.

Communications - The Communications Management Unit is responsible for sharing current public health information with members, the media and the public via monthly E-News, the association's website and National Public Health Week.

Fiscal - The Fiscal Management Unit is responsible for auditing UPHA revenues and expenses, preparing the association budget and identifying new and additional funding sources.

Policy - The Policy Management Unit is responsible for UPHA advocacy efforts, including advancing sound public health policy.

Terms for communications, fiscal and policy positions are three years.

Additionally, we seek three members for the newly formed Awards Committee.

For more information about each of these positions, please visit: http://www.upha.org/board.html
If you have questions about any of the positions, please contact a current member or any of the UPHA leadership.

If you are interested in running, please contact one of the nominations committee members:

Laurie Baksh, lbaksh@utah.gov, 801-538-9146
Brian Bennion, bbennion@slco.org, 385-468-4119
Lynne Nilson, lpnilson@utah.gov, 801-538-7049

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What sequestration means for Utah:

As Congress abandons all effort to avert the sequester, public health programs begin the process of anticipating cuts to their 2013 funding.   The APHA reports that most federally funded public health programs will see their 2013 funding decrease by a minimum of 5%.  Given grantees are many months into their grant year, the cut’s severity is increased as the full impact is squeezed into the remaining grant periods – for many programs 12 months of cuts will be squeezed into seven.

Since 2010, 70% of Americans have already been negatively affected and 15% of the public health workforce already lost by reduced funding.  These cuts will result in a further weakening of the public health safety net.  The following are some examples of additional impacts that the sequester cuts will have on the citizens of Utah:

Public Health: Utah will lose approximately $264,000 in funds to help upgrade its ability to respond to public health threats including infectious diseases, natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiological events. In addition, Utah will lose about $850,000 in grants to help prevent and treat substance abuse, resulting in around 800 fewer admissions to substance abuse programs. And the Utah State Department of Health will lose about $46,000 resulting in around 1,100 fewer HIV tests.

Vaccines for Children: In Utah around 1,230 fewer children will receive vaccines for diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, whooping cough, influenza, and Hepatitis B due to reduced funding for vaccinations of about $84,000.

Protections for Clean Air and Clean Water: Utah would lose about $1,289,000 in environmental funding to ensure clean water and air quality, as well as prevent pollution from pesticides and hazardous waste.

[Source: The Whitehouse 3/1/2013]

Anticipate the attention of Congress to now move to the March 27th expiration of the continuing resolution enacted to avoid a government shutdown due to Congress’s impasse regarding the 2013 budget, by enacting an additional continuing resolution to fund the government through September and continuing the sequester.

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Utah Public Health Association Day at the Legislature

On March 4th, UPHA sponsored the morning breaks for both houses of the Utah Legislature. Nearly every Senator dropped by for healthy yogurt, fruit and granola bars, speaking to UPHA representatives and learning of the incredible depth of expertise available within our membership. The house was no exception with several anxious house members asking for UPHA's opinions on several pieces of key legislation.

Thanks to our UPHA President Darrin Sluga who met with the House leaders accompanied by student caucus member Steven Hanson and to UPHA President Elect Dr. George White who strengthened his many friendships with many in the Senate with student caucus member Constance Westmoreland.

Hanson Hutchings Sluga

UPHA President Darrin Sluga, UPHA Student Caucus member Steve Hanson with Representative Eric Hutchings

Thatcher White

UPHA President Elect Dr. George White with Senator Daniel Thatcher's sister.

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Adult Medicaid Expansion

Efforts to consider a Utah Medicaid expansion to 131,000 uninsured low income adults stalled in the legislature as a feasibility study by the Public Consulting Group (PCG) was delayed.   H.B. 153 to resume the expansion discussion during the interim session once the PCG study becomes available moves out of the House Business and Labor Committee with a unanimous vote.   Also clearing the House Business and Labor Committee is H.B. 391 forbidding Utah from expanding Medicaid.   The Governor has advocated that the legislature take a thoughtful approach and not to prematurely decide the expansion question prior to the data in the PCG study becoming available to law makers.  As a data driven movement, public health commends the Governor’s approach to weigh all the available evidence prior to making a determination. 

The UPHA membership as public health leaders should advocate that our law makers legislate based on sound data.  Please become personally informed about this important issue and be ready to act, should the legislature move to decide the Medicaid expansion prior to having all the facts. 

The following links provide additional information regarding the Medicaid expansion:

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Board Member Spotlight:

HeatherBorski Heather Borski, MPH, MCHES
Director, Bureau of Health Promotion, Utah Department of Health
UPHA Policy Committee, 2nd year position

This month’s Board Member Spotlight is Heather Borski. Heather is the director of the Bureau of Health Promotion at the Utah Department of Health. Heather originally came to Utah from Colorado to become a professional ballet dancer.  She received a scholarship to the University of Utah’s Ballet program but, due to chronic injuries and other factors, ballet didn’t work out.  Because of her ballet experience, she was interested in Nutrition.  The University of Utah didn’t have an undergraduate nutrition program, so she decided to get an undergrad degree in Health Ed, then get a graduate degree in nutrition.  During her undergraduate program, she landed an internship with the Tobacco Prevention and Control Program.  She loved the topic so much, she scrapped her plans and got a Masters in Public Health instead and stayed on the public health track.  Of the career path change she says “I have no regrets!”

Heather has been instrumental in numerous public health projects but she says the one that stands out as being the “most rewarding project” she has worked on was developing the first iteration of the Ending Nicotine Dependence Program. This is a tobacco cessation program for teens that is still used statewide.

In her spare time, Heather likes to travel.,read, hike, play with her dog and spend time with her family. Her favorite vacation spot is Santa Fe, New Mexico. She is a morning person, and is up by 5AM to hit the gym before work! She says that if she could eat only one food for the rest of her life, it would definitely be pasta! And one of the most memorable things she has done in her life was to volunteer for the 2002 Olympics!

As she finishes out her second year on the Policy Committee of UPHA, Heather encourages people to get involved with UPHA for the opportunity to network with great people!

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Student Spotlights

BYU and UVU students are working with a local company to take social technology and public health to the next level. With their new product, Coach Alba, communities can now utilize social media and text messaging to fight obesity rates in Utah. Founded in 2010, Coach Alba uses evidence-based research with Web and mobile technologies to help people through crucial moments when they are most likely to give in to temptation and overeat.

In 2012, Coach Alba launched its flagship product, an adaptive, personalized SMS messaging platform designed to offer meaningful and timely support to users as they work toward personal improvement goals. The platform’s use of SMS texting makes it more widely available than a mobile app and more able to reach users during their individual crucial moments of vulnerability. Already, Coach Alba has already helped people make lasting changes to their lifestyle, including Coach Alba's founder, Vincent Han, who lost 55 pounds using the program!

“I love working at Coach Alba because our work environment is one that allows each of the employees to really thrive and feel a part of something important. It is exciting to be working for such an innovative company. Since my background is in public health, I really enjoy the opportunity to work for a company so focused on helping people enjoy a better lifestyle by focusing on important behavior change principles.” - Sarah Van Wagenen, BYU student

Coach ALBA

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Save the Dates!

Don't forget to mark your calendars, and share these events with your colleagues!

Free Webinar -- Mastering Public Health: Essential Skills for Effective Practice
Friday,April 5th
Time: 10am
Dr. Barry Levy and Joyce Gaufin -- coauthors of Mastering Public Health: Essential Skills for Effective Practice -- will share insights to public health practitioners and students. Stay tuned for details.

2013 UPHA Conference
April 8-10, 2013
Location: Ogden Eccles Center
If anyone has suggestions for fabulous keynote speakers, the planning committee would love to hear your ideas! Send your suggestions to Audrey Stevenson at AStevenson@slco.org. More details coming soon at www.upha.org/conference/index.htm.

Public Health Grand Rounds and Global Public Health Grand Rounds are held at the University of Utah on the 2nd Tuesday of the Month.
Public Health Grand Rounds 8:00 AM – 9:00 AM
Global Health Grand Rounds: 5:30 PM – 6:30 PM
More information available at: http://medicine.utah.edu/dfpm/DivisionPH/news-events.htm

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