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research-and-clinical-trials

U of M study: U.S. rates of uninsured kids on the decline

A new report compiled by the University of Minnesota’s State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) shows the percentage of U.S. children who lack health insurance fell to 7.5 percent in 2012, the most recent year of data available. The percentage of uninsured children nationwide dropped from 9.7 percent in 2008.

The report also shows significant gains in coverage among children who historically have been most likely to be uninsured —including non-white and Hispanic children and kids in low-income families.

The report was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and appears on the SHADAC site.

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expert-perspectives

Health Talk Recommends: Assessing the ACA’s impact on pregnant inmates

Pregnancy can be hard in the best of circumstances. For a pregnant inmate, incarceration opens up a whole new set of challenges faced only by expectant mothers behind bars.

To coincide with the March issue of Health Affairs, which focuses on issues related to incarceration and health, University of Minnesota researchers Katy Kozhimannil, Ph.D. of the School of Public Health and Rebecca Shlafer, Ph.D. of the Medical School wrote about what the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will mean for the 6-10 percent of female prisoners who are pregnant during their incarceration.

“Currently, pregnant inmates have increased rates of complicated and preterm deliveries, and mothers and their babies have more risk factors and worse birth outcomes than similar women who are not incarcerated,” said Kozhimannil.

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research-and-clinical-trials

Active lifestyle: Good for the body and the brain

University of Minnesota researchers have good news for young adults who lead an active lifestyle: By staying active today, you may actually be preserving your memory and thinking skills in middle age.

The findings are most important for the young adults on the low and moderate end of fitness; the people with higher levels of fitness are already doing it right.

“Many studies show the benefits to the brain of good heart health,” said study author David R. Jacobs, Jr., Ph.D., at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. “This is one more important study that should remind young adults of the brain health benefits of cardio fitness activities such as running, swimming, biking or cardio fitness classes.”

Jacobs emphasizes that for those on the lower end of fitness, cardio fitness activities themselves may even not be needed; just moving around in daily life and staying active can improve your future outlook.

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research-and-clinical-trials

U of M study: Walking while working improves health, may boost productivity

According to new research from the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management, walking on a treadmill during the workday not only improves health, it can also potentially boost productivity.

Researchers outfitted 40 workstations at a Twin Cities financial services company with a computer, phone, writing area and treadmill. As subjects worked, they could adjust their walking speed up to two mph. To help gauge workout intensity, each subject was also given an energy expenditure device to be worn during work hours…

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news-and-notes

Game Changer: Bernard Harlow

Bernard Harlow is one of the nation’s leaders in female reproductive health research, looking closely at the relationship between psychiatric disorders and reproductive function. His work is making a big impact in Twin Cities communities and has led to the largest NIH grant of its kind in his subject field.

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research-and-clinical-trials

Research Snapshot: Treatment and survival trends in patients with early laryngeal cancer

Stephanie Misono, M.D. M.P.H., and colleagues within the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and School of Medicine recently released the results of a study examining trends in treatment of people within the early stages of laryngeal cancer.

The objectives of this study were

  • To identify factors associated with treatment differences.
  • Characterize changes in treatment patterns over time.
  • Compare survival rates across treatment types in patients who received treatment.

Using a cancer surveillance database, researchers analyzed rates and trends in patients who were treated from 1995 to 2009. 10,429 adult patients diagnosed with early cancer of the larynx (voicebox) were studied…

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