Thursday, February 24, 2011

New Air Quality Tutorials are Now Available Online!

The Utah Asthma Program in partnership with the Utah Division of Air Quality (DAQ)  have created tutorials to assist Utahns in learning and understanding our air quality.

The three tutorials explain 1) how to use DAQ's website, get the hourly pollution levels 2) how to use the Recess Guidance for Schools: When to schedule indoor recess based on the air quality and 3) how to track the pollution and your symptoms to protect your health.

The tutorials can be found on the Asthma Program Website. Check them out.

If you have any questions concerning the tutorials contact Rebecca Jorgensen at

High Prevalence of Vitamin B12 Deficiency in Bhutanese refugees from Nepal

CDC, in collaboration with several states, is completing analysis from an investigation about reports of high prevalence of Vitamin B12 deficiency among newly arriving Bhutanese refugees.  The causes are to be determined but may be multifactoral.  Because the interim findings do suggest that the rates may be higher in this population, CDC recommends that all health care providers seeing Bhutanese refugees should be alerted to this issue.  At this time it is being recommended that all Bhutanese refugees be supplemented with Vitamin B12 and provided nutrition advice upon arrival in the U.S.  Those with a diet history and symptoms related to the deficiency should be tested, treated with parenteral or appropriate dose of oral supplements, and followed by evaluation of response to therapy.  These are interim recommendations and more information based on analysis of the data available will be forthcoming. However, given the seriousness of neurologic deficits associated with vitamin B12 deficiency, this alert is being distributed early for clinicians’ attention.
Noticed produced by: Heather Burke, Domestic Team
Immigrant, Refugee and Migrant Health Branch, Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, CDC
For more information about symptoms and treatments of Vitamin B12 Deficiency go to CDC Resources for Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms and Treatment.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Have you had your Zoster Vaccination?

Zoster vaccine is recommended to all adults 60 years of age and older.  Zoster is for protection against Shingles. If you or someone you know is uninsured, have no supplemental Medicare part D insurance, or out-of-pocket expense is more than $20, you are eligible for a low-cost Zoster vaccination while supplies last. Contant the following pharmacies for a vaccination appointment:

Fresh Market Pharmacies                                                 
                                              Area code (801)
4530 S. Highland Dr., SLC           278-5388
1638 S.9th E., SLC                       484-8742
2040 S. 23rd E., SLC                   487-1018
5632 S. 900 E., SLC                    262-1025
1825 W. 4700 S., Taylorsville       964-2626
3420 S. 5600 W., WVC               969-2902
1784 W. 12600 S., Riverton         254-0198
898 E. 3300 S., SLC                    485-7986
1212 E. Draper Pkwy., Draper      571-1406

 Smith's Pharmacies
                                                  Area code (801)
1174 W. 600 N., SLC                   363-1047
828 S. 900 W., SLC                      364-2564
455 S. 500 E., SLC                       328-6033
3215 South Valley St., SLC           486-8477
4065 S. Redwood Rd., WVC        972-4945
4643 S. 4000 W., WVC                968-1896
1820 W. 9000 S., West Jordan      562-4993
8055 W. 3500 S., Magna               250-6900

Information provided by Utah Adult Immunization Coalition and Utah Department of Health Immunization Program.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

New Dietary Guidelines for Americans

Because more than one-third of children and more than two-thirds of adults in the United States are overweight or obese, the 7th edition of Dietary Guidelines for Americans places stronger emphasis on reducing calorie consumption and increasing physical activity.

Tips to follow the guidelines include:

• Enjoy your food, but eat less.
• Avoid oversized portions.
• Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
• Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.
• Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals – and choose the foods with lower numbers.
• Drink water instead of sugary drinks.
For the complete guidelines, see

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Literature about Healthcare Access, Obesity and Birth Outcomes

The Center for Multicultural Health (CMH) has completed a literature review to inform efforts to address health problems in minority communities over the next three years.  CMH investigated factors leading to health problems in minority groups and national recommendations to prevent these problems.

The review demonstrated that racism, poverty, language barriers, crime, acculturation, lack of primary care providers and lack of preventive care are all strong factors affecting minority health.  To improve minority health, experts recommended addressing health literacy and cultural competence; informing community members about healthy, inexpensive food choices; improving breastfeeding norms; and promoting preconception family planning and healthcare.

The complete review is available at

While a great deal of local data were available about Hispanics/Latinos and numerous national studies had been completed about Black/African American health disparities, very little information was available about the Pacific Islander population.  For this reason, CMH and other partners at the Utah Department of Health are currently completing randomized telephone study of Utah Pacific Islanders.  CMH is also completing focus groups and snowball-style paper surveys among Utah Hispanics/Latinos, Blacks/African Americans and Pacific Islanders.

Students Investigate Depression among Utah Hispanics

 In the reports, Health Status by Race and Ethnicity 2010 and Moving Forward in 2010, the Center for Multicultural Health (CMH) reported that Utah Hispanics have high rates of major depression.

Based on these data, CMH proposed the following research questions:

Are lifestyles, environmental, and/or cultural factors making Hispanics more susceptible to depression than other Utahns? Or are Hispanics less likely to seek treatment for depression and therefore exhibit the depression symptoms that are captured by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS)?

Students at the Brigham Young University Master of Public Health program have completed a project based on this research concept. Their complete report can be read at: