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Smoking, growing private hospital care for poor and US flu vaccine policies

NEW YORK CITY, May 14 -- Bans on smoking at home may have greater influence on health status than those at work, according to a first-study-of-its kind study published in the May/June 2007 issue of The Journal of Urban Health (JUH), a bi-monthly publication of The New York Academy of Medicine. Also, a community's ethnic diversity can influence on a woman's decision to smoke during pregnancy, according to another study in this JUH issue, which also includes reports on how private hospitals have surpassed public hospitals in caring for Medicaid patients, as well as on the effect of 2004-2005 influenza vaccine shortage on minority groups.

Below are summaries of the four studies. Access to the full table of contents and the 11 peer-reviewed articles within can be found on the JUH web site at http://www.springer.com/west/home/public+health"SGWID=4-40467-70-79373664-0.

Influenza Vaccine Shortage Did Not Results in Racial Disparities in Inner City Health Centers

Despite fears that the 50 percent reduction in available flu vaccines in 2004-2005 would leave those with the greatest flu risk unprotected, that did not happen, according to an analysis by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh's School of Medicine and Graduate School of Public Health. In fact, the researchers conclude, the priority vaccination groups established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) could serve as a model for establishing future priority vaccine groups in anticipation of a possible flu pandemic. The 2004-2005 flu shortage resulted when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and British authorities suspended the license of one of only two manufacturers that provided the U.S. supply of inactivated influenza vaccine. The CDC stepped in and recommended that adults older than 65 and those with chronic health conditions, among other groups,
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Contact: Kathryn Cervino
kcervino@NYAM.ORG
212-822-7285
New York Academy of Medicine
14-May-2007


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