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The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a report in December of 2012, in which the Co-Chairs lamented that youth exposure to violence is "alarming" in its scale and broad in its reach, impacting "urban, suburban, and rural areas" and affecting "gated communities and tribal lands". 
Health Policy Links

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June 2, 2015 

An investment into men's health is an investment into their families and the women- including wives, sisters, daughters and mothers-in their life. Men are at higher risk for occupational hazards, chronic conditions, premature death and less likely to routinely see a doctor for preventive and other care. Issues concerning men's health prompts policy makers and the healthcare community to think deeply about how to ensure  gender-specific health and social needs in a culturally relevant manner; as many will agree, women too have specific health needs and social challenges. 
Help celebrate Men's Health Month and Men's Health Week, June 15-21, 2015, by supporting healthy lifestyle habits for all men.  Visit the Men's Health Resource Center to learn more.
Regional Spotlight: My Brother's Keeper

In recognition of Men's Health Month we highlight the efforts of My Brother's Keeper (MBK), a White House initiative designed to provide young men of color with opportunities for advancement, that may not have otherwise been provided to them. MBK aims to meet the needs of undeserved populations through transdisciplinary collaboration, policies and a recognition of the social factors that play a vital role in one's life course. Read the My Brother's Keeper Task Force One Year Report, 2015 to find out more about MBKLocal leaders can join the MBK initiatives by following the steps below:

  1. Accept the President's Challenge
  2. Convene a "Local Action Summit" to build an MBK Community
  3. Conduct a policy review and form recommendations for action
  4. Launch a plan of action, next steps and a timetable for review

A continuation of the MBK initiative, the Alliance is committed to "...make the American Dream available to all boys and young men of color by eliminating gaps in their opportunities and outcomes." MBK strives to achieve this by ensuring a quality education, mentors, minimizing violence and providing access to economic opportunities for "disconnected" or "opportunity" youth. Learn more by reading My Brother's Keeper Community Challenge and Opportunity Youth.

Town Highlight:  War, West Virginia

The  City of War , located in McDowell County, WV, is considered WV's most southern city and perhaps one of the most isolated.  War is 94% white and has an average annual household income of $17,083, compared to $40,196 in WV and $53,046 in the U.S . As of 2014, the unemployment rate in War was 10%.  A ccording to the  County Health Rankings , the health of McDowell County residents lags far behind that of other West  Virginians.  McDowell County , represents the amalgam of challenges many rural areas face including substance abuse, rampant poverty and vast unemployment; all of which may create barriers to health and wellness.    The United States Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service has noted that the Appalachia region (WV, Southern PA, eastern KY, western, VA, and parts of NC, TN, MS, AL and GA) perennially deals with severe poverty. While there is much to be appreciated from bucolic towns in America, there are structural barriers to health for many rural Americans ranging from access to healthy foods, quality healthcare and environmental hazards. How can policies improve rural health? Visit HPRC on Facebook and Twitter  to share your thoughts.
Turn This Town Around focuses on two small towns in West
Virginia, Grafton and Matewan. Residents have been rallied to improve the local area through wide-scale community engagement. These engagement efforts allowed organizers to better understand and appeal to the needs and expectations of the local residents. As a result, both towns have successfully launched several community enrichment projects including investing in tourist attractions, local businesses and green spaces. Click the link above to learn more.


The West Virginia Physical Activity Network (WVPAN) aims to increase physical activity in West Virginia.  WVPAN assists communities in creating the culture needed to guide West Virginians into a more physically active lifestyle, to improve health and the quality of life.

The West Virginia Kids and Families Coalition in conjunction with the West Virginia Center for Budget and Policy use regional policy workshops to inform local policies. During these sessions community members gain an appreciation for the policy process by demonstrating how policy impacts education, wages, access to foods and ultimately health.

In the News



Men's Health, Race and Ethnicity 

Gender and race affect health through various processes, as demonstrated by the findings in this 2012 report from the Kaiser Family FoundationPutting Men's Health on the Map. The report found that Hispanic and American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) men had the highest rate of fair or poor self-reported health status; African American men maintain the highest rate of incarceration; White and Hispanic men had the highest binge drinking rates and AI/AN men also lead in diabetes . Overall African American men were found to experience worse health than men of other racial and ethnic groups. In a recent article in the New York Times, it was found that in the United States there are 83 black men for every 100 black women. Approximately 1.5 million black men between the ages of 25 and 54 are missing "largely because of early deaths or because they are behind bars."  Homicide is the leading cause of death for young black men, a group that also has higher rates of heart disease, respiratory disease and accidents. Click here to read more.  


A Closer Look at African American Men and High Blood Pressure Control   

Known as the "silent killer," high blood pressure or "hypertension" is taking an increasing toll on American society.  The rate of hypertension-related deaths increased by 23.1% from 2000 to 2013.  The prevalence of high blood pressure among black males is 30% higher than that of their white counterparts. While lifestyle choices, such as diet and physical activity, can help prevent with blood pressure, there are also important socioeconomic and psycho-social factors that increase the risk of hypertension, including income, employment, racism and stress.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, public health programs that seek to close the gap in hypertension for black males must address these health factors at the systems level - not just at the individual level.  Learn more here   

 Health Innovations
barber-shop-kid-trio.jpgHair and Health Talk

Under a new public health initiative sponsored by the Center for Health Equity at the University of Maryland and Cigna, barbers and hair stylists in DC and Prince George's County, MD are collaborating to close the health gap in cancer facing black men and women. The culturally-savvy project, known as Health Advocates In-Reach and Research or HAIR, is designed to train barbers and hair stylists on how to teach their clientele about colorectal cancer and the importance of screening. Learn more about how barbers and hair stylists are playing a key role in community engagement and health advocacy by clicking here


Diabetes Threatens Latino Men and Families  

According to the CDC, in the year 2000 two million of the 30 million Latinos on the U.S. had been diagnosed with diabetes.  Latinos are nearly twice as likely than whites to have diabetes.  The CDC says, "Diabetes has consistently affected Hispanics and African Americans at higher levels than non-Hispanic whites over the last two and a half decades."  Learn more by clicking here.     


NIMHD Updates 


NIMHD has released the April 27th webcast of the Health Equity Summit: 30 Years of Advancing Health Equity; The Heckler Report: A Force for Ending Health Disparities in America, with special guest Margaret Heckler, former Secretary of Health. Other speakers included: HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, former HHS Secretary Dr. Louis W. Sullivan, former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher and retired Congressman Louis Stokes.


Upcoming Events  

Promising and Innovative Practices for Children of Incarcerated Parents: Arrest through Pre-Adjudication

Date: Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Time: 12:30 p.m. -5:00 p.m., EDT 

Description: The Urban Institute and the National Institute of Corrections has organized a webinar to  provide information about programs that can address the health and social challenges for the children of incarcerated parents. Click   HERE   to register.

Description: Join the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) for their series of webinars designed to educate Americans about the health care law. The dates and time of upcoming virtual events are below.

Special Enrollment Periods and Resources for the Uninsured

Got Coverage? Next Steps in Using Your Health Insurance

Tuesday, June 23, 2015 from 4:00pm-5:00pm, EDT


The Preliminary Plan for the Subdivision and the Detailed Site Plan for Prince George County Regional Hospital

Date: Thursday, June 18, 2015 

Time: 9:00 a.m., EDT

Location: Prince George's County Administration Building 14741 Governor Oden Bowie Drive, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772 (Planning Board Hearing Room, 1st floor.) 

Description: The Prince George's County Planning Board seeks residents' input on planning, zoning and subdivision issues. Residents can also register to testify by clicking HERE or calling or call 301-952-4487 * TTY*: 301-952-4633.


Urban Health Symposium: Re-imagining Health in Cities: New Directions in Urban Health Research and Action

Dates: September 10-11, 2015

Location: Drexel University School of Public Health, Nesbitt Hall, 3215 Market St. Philadelphia, PA 19104.

Click here to submit an abstract. Abstracts are due Friday, June 19th, 2015.

Funding Opportunities
  • HIV/AIDS Community Information Outreach Project 2015. This is a solicitation of quotations from organizations and libraries to design and conduct projects for improving HIV/AIDS information access for patients, affected community, caregivers, and the general public. Deadline is July 20, 2015. 
  • Healthy Eating Research Grants support research that informs environmental and policy strategies which could promote healthy eating among children to prevent childhood obesity. The deadline is June 24, 2015. 

Please feel free to contact the HPRC Team at 301.375.2021 with any questions.

Thank you,

The Health Policy Research Consortium

Disclaimer: The Health Policy Research Consortium (HPRC), a CTIS, Inc. program, is a U54 partnership grant funded by the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD), a subsidiary of the National Institutes of Health. HPRC only provides objective, independent advice, best practices and evidence based-recommendations. HPRC does not lobby on behalf of any private or public corporation, political candidate, advocacy organization or special interest group.
Health Policy Research Consortium
6401 Golden Triangle Drive, Ste. 310
Greenbelt, MD 20770
Phone: (301) 375-2021