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expert-perspectives

Breastfeeding at Work: Challenges and Opportunities for Minnesota’s Mothers

Editor’s note: This post was developed by Alexis Russell, M.P.H., a 2015 graduate of the Public Health Administration and Policy Program, Division of Health Policy and Management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health and Katy Kozhimannil, Ph.D., M.P.A., associate professor, Division of Health Policy and Management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health.

August is National Breastfeeding Month. It’s also the “Back-to-school” time of year, when students and teachers prepare for the upcoming school year. It’s a time of great excitement, but, it’s also a particularly challenging time for teachers who also happen to be mothers who are breastfeeding.

In 2011, fewer than 1 in 4 Minnesota infants were breastfed to the recommended length of time. Employed mothers are one subgroup of women that struggle to meet recommendations for breastfeeding, due in part to barriers they experience as part of their day-to-day schedules and obligations at work.

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in-the-news

In the News: Drug manufacturers fail to report serious side effects within 15-day time period

Drug manufacturers are required to disclose serious side effects and unexpected adverse events to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) within 15 days of being notified by a patient. However, a recent study at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health in collaboration with Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Carlson School of Management, found 1 in 10 companies fail to comply with these regulations.

The research, referenced in a recent Star Tribune article, analyzed 1.6 million reports from drug manufacturers between 2004 and 2014. Results showed the companies were less likely to disclose the reports to the FDA if the side effects were fatal.

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in-the-news

In the News: HPV vaccine has slow entry into public health policy

It’s been nearly a decade since the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination was introduced, yet vaccination rates are still very low. A recent JAMA report showed the HPV vaccine has had a more difficult time making its way into public health policy than other vaccinations.

According to recent data from the CDC, only 37.6 percent of American teenage girls have received the series of HPV vaccinations, and only 13.9 percent of teenage boys. Only two states, Virginia and, as of next month, Rhode Island, require the vaccination for middle school enrollment.

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expert-perspectives

Coming to a beach near you: The ‘dad bod’

Sometimes it’s hard to fathom how or why some trends ever gain momentum or become popular. The selfie stick? Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge? #YOLO?

Now, a new body image trend known as the ‘dad bod’ is making its way around the Internet and social media. What makes up this unique physical trait?

According to this MSN article, the dad bod is “a nice balance between a beer gut and working out.” And while this trend seems relatively harmless and all in good fun, a recent study in JAMA Internal Medicine found 67.6 million American adults aged 25 and older are obese and an additional 65.2 million are overweight.

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expert-perspectives

With summer break ahead, U of M expert shares what foods parents should keep in the fridge and pantry

Summer break is just around the corner and many parents are hoping to keep the fridge stocked with healthy and convenient options – especially for kids.

Health Talk spoke with Jamie Stang, Ph.D., M.P.H, director of the Leadership Education and Training Program in Maternal and Child Health Nutrition and associate professor in the School of Public Health, to learn how parents can still provide healthy food options this summer even if they’re not at home.

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research-and-clinical-trials

Research snapshot: Inhaler ban increases costs for asthma patients

Over 25 million people in the U.S. rely on respiratory inhalers to relieve wheezing, shortness of breath, coughing and additional asthma-related symptoms. In an attempt to reduce their environmental footprint, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) placed a ban on the production of ozone-depleting inhalers.

This 2008 ban changed the type of albuterol inhalers available to asthma patients, and eliminated the use of inhalers with chlorofluorocarbon (CFC). These generic medications were replaced by the more expensive alternative that uses hydrofluoroalkane (HFA), a more environmentally friendly inhaler.

A recent JAMA Internal Medicine study found that this inhaler ban has been more costly, as the average asthma patient is paying twice as much for their medication. Health Talk turned to co-author of the study, Pinar Karaca-Mandic, Ph.D., from the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota to help explain the ban and its costly impacts on asthma patients.

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