Page 1 of 1

MCH Newsletter 8/5/05

Posted: Mon Aug 08, 2005 07:36 pm
by denise
************************************************************
MCH Alert
Tomorrow's Policy Today
************************************************************

Maternal and Child Health Library

This and past issues of the MCH Alert are available at
http://www.mchlibrary.info/alert/archives.html.

August 5, 2005

1. New Edition of Domestic Violence Knowledge Path Available
2. KIDS COUNT 2005 Data Book and Online Database Released
3. New Field of Research Suggests Wider Universe of Factors to Be
Considered in Understanding Adolescent Sexual Behavior
4. Issue Brief Highlights States' Role in Improving the Quality of Health
and Health Care for Young Children
5. Article Focuses on U.S. Children with Discontinuous Health Insurance
Coverage

************************************************************

1. NEW EDITION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE KNOWLEDGE PATH AVAILABLE

The new edition of Knowledge Path: Domestic Violence is an electronic
guide to recent, high-quality resources and information tools for
identifying and responding to domestic violence within the home and in the
community. Produced by the MCH Library, the knowledge path includes
information on (and links to) Web sites and electronic publications,
databases, and electronic newsletters. It is intended for use by health
professionals, program administrators, policymakers, advocates,
researchers, employers, and individuals who have experienced abuse and
their families. The knowledge path is available at
http://www.mchlibrary.info/KnowledgePat ... lence.html.

MCH Library knowledge paths on other maternal and child health topics are
available at http://www.mchlibrary.info/KnowledgePaths/index.html. The MCH
Library welcomes feedback on the usefulness and value of these knowledge
paths. A feedback form is available at
http://www.mchlibrary.info/KnowledgePaths/feedback.html.

************************************************************

2. KIDS COUNT 2005 DATA BOOK AND ONLINE DATABASE RELEASED

KIDS COUNT 2005 Data Book reports national trends in 10 key areas of child
well-being. The 16th annual data book, published by the Annie E. Casey
Foundation, includes a summary and findings, a U.S. profile, state-level
data, and definitions and data sources. The data book also contains an
essay that examines four employment barriers (substance abuse, domestic
violence, a history of incarceration, and depression) and how policymakers
and others can help families overcome these barriers and achieve financial
success. Data from the 2005 data book are also available as part of an
interactive online database titled State-Level Data Online. The database
allows users to generate custom graphs, maps, ranked lists, and
state-by-state profiles or to download the entire data set as delimited
text files. The data book and database are available at
http://www.aecf.org/kidscount/sld/databook.jsp.

************************************************************

3. NEW FIELD OF RESEARCH SUGGESTS WIDER UNIVERSE OF FACTORS TO BE
CONSIDERED IN UNDERSTANDING ADOLESCENT SEXUAL BEHAVIOR

The Adolescent Brain: A Work in Progress discusses the importance of
neurological development in overall adolescent development and,
specifically, new research on adolescent brain development as a relevant
factor in understanding adolescent sexual behavior and pregnancy. Authored
by international experts in adolescent brain development and published by
the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, the 21-page publication
contains a foreword by National Campaign director Sarah Brown, a brief
summary, a chart of key findings, and the paper itself. Topics include
what we know, how the adolescent brain changes, how such changes take
place, why brain changes during adolescence matter, and implications. The
publication is available at
http://www.teenpregnancy.org/resources/ ... /BRAIN.pdf.

************************************************************

4. ISSUE BRIEF HIGHLIGHTS STATES' ROLE IN IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF HEALTH
AND HEALTH CARE FOR YOUNG CHILDREN

"States today are in the best position -- among all American entities and
organizations -- to influence young children's health and health care,"
states the author of a July 2005 issue brief published by the Commonwealth
Fund. While the health of American children has improved over recent
generations, there is evidence that the quality of children's health care
is inadequate. The issue brief identifies specific strategies that state
policymakers can undertake to improve the quality of health care for
children and illustrates the issues that must be overcome to achieve

improvements in quality.

To achieve improvements in quality of care, the author suggests that state
policymakers and officials consider the following key strategies:

* Develop specific child health quality measures

* Measure and monitor performance

* Make information on quality performance easily available

* Reward superior performance

* Use performance measures in purchasing and program decisions

Significant challenges to improving the quality of health care for young
children addressed by the author include the following:

* Lack of coordination among programs within a state

* Lack of adequate data and information technology

* Tendency of state officials to focus on short-term policy projects

The author concludes that "despite significant challenges in funding,
administration, data and leadership, states can take steps to improve
quality of health care for young children."

Smith VK. 2005. Role of states in improving health and health care for
young children. New York, NY: Commonwealth Fund. Available at
http://www.cmwf.org/usr_doc/States_impr ... ildren.pdf.

************************************************************

5. ARTICLE FOCUSES ON U.S. CHILDREN WITH DISCONTINUOUS HEALTH INSURANCE
COVERAGE

"We have found that on several indicators, children with intermittent
insurance have notable problems," state the authors of an article
published in the July 28, 2005, issue of The New England Journal of
Medicine. Although it has been estimated that more than 40 million people
in the United States are uninsured, this estimate may not include those
with discontinuous coverage, and few studies address the affect of
discontinuity of health insurance coverage for children on access to
ambulatory health care and visits to doctors' offices. The article
addresses the following questions: (1) What characteristics do children
with intermittent insurance coverage have in terms of age, family income,
race or ethnic group, region of residence, citizenship, family structure,
parental employment, and health status that distinguish them from other
children? And (2) How does access to ambulatory care vary among children
who have insurance, children who have discontinuous insurance, and
children who have no insurance at all?

For the study described in this article, the authors used data from the
2000 and 2001 National Health Interview Surveys -- a collection of
information about the demographic characteristics, health status, and
health care use of the U.S. civilian noninstitutionalized population.

The authors found that

* On average, in 2000 and 2001, 6.6% of U.S. children (ages 17 or younger)
had no health insurance during the most recent 12-month period. When
children who were uninsured for part of the year were included, the
percentage increased to 14.3% each year.

* Children who were fully insured with either public or private insurance
had delayed care in less than 2.5% of cases, compared with 15.9% for
children who were uninsured for the full year and 20.2% for those
uninsured for part of the year.

* Independent of age, family income, race or ethnic group, region of
residence, citizenship, family structure, parental employment, and health
status, being uninsured substantially increased the likelihood that
children would have problems with access to and use of ambulatory health
care.

* On several measures, children who were uninsured for part of the year
had problems at rates similar to those for children who were uninsured for
the entire year, whereas children who were fully insured with either
public or private insurance had much lower rates of problems.

The authors conclude that "for policymakers, the findings point to the
need for more encompassing measures of the situation of being uninsured."

Olson LM, Tang SS, Newacheck PW. 2005. Children in the United States with
discontinuous health insurance coverage. The New England Journal of
Medicine 353(4):382-391. Abstract available at
http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/abstract/353/4/382.

Readers: Covering Kids & Families Back-to-School Campaign is a nationwide
effort to enroll eligible children in public health insurance programs
during the back-to-school season. Campaign activities and materials (in
English and Spanish) are available at
http://www.coveringkidsandfamilies.org. More information on child health
insurance and access to care is available from the MCH Library's knowledge
path at http://www.mchlibrary.info/KnowledgePat ... rance.html and
annotated bibliography at
http://www.mchlibrary.info/action.lasso ... ns&-search.

************************************************************

To subscribe to MCH Alert, send an e-mail message to
MCHAlert-request@list.ncemch.org with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line. You
do not need to enter any text in the body of the message.

To unsubscribe from MCH Alert, send an e-mail message to
MCHAlert-request@list.ncemch.org with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line. You
do not need to enter any text in the body of the message.

************************************************************

MCH Alert © 1998-2005 by National Center for Education in Maternal and
Child Health and Georgetown University. MCH Alert is produced by Maternal
and Child Health Library at the National Center for Education in Maternal
and Child Health under its cooperative agreement (U02MC00001) with the
Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Health Resources and Services
Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Maternal
and Child Health Bureau reserves a royalty-free, nonexclusive, and
irrevocable right to use the work for federal purposes and to authorize
others to use the work for federal purposes.

Permission is given to forward MCH Alert to individual colleagues. For all
other uses, requests for permission to duplicate and use all or part of
the information contained in this publication should be sent to
mchalert@ncemch.org.

The editors welcome your submissions, suggestions, and questions. Please
contact us at the address below.

MANAGING EDITOR: Jolene Bertness
CO-EDITOR: Tracy Lopez
COPYEDITOR/WRITER: Ruth Barzel
LIST ADMINISTRATOR: Beth DeFrancis

MCH Alert
Maternal and Child Health Library
Georgetown University
Box 571272
Washington, DC 20057-1272
Phone: (202) 784-9770
Fax: (202) 784-9777
E-mail: MCHAlert@ncemch.org
Web site: http://www.MCHLibrary.info/Alert/default.html

************************************************************

_______________________________________________
MCHAlert mailing list
MCHAlert@list.ncemch.org
http://list.mchgroup.org/mailman/listinfo/mchalert