Summary of 2008 APHA policies adopted by the Governing Council in October: new policies address issues such as abortion access, health systems, community water fluoridation.THE FOLLOWING are brief descriptions of the 12 policies adopted by the Governing Council at APHA's 136th Annual Meeting in San Diego San Diego (săn dēā`gō), city (1990 pop. 1,110,549), seat of San Diego co., S Calif., on San Diego Bay; inc. 1850. San Diego includes the unincorporated communities of La Jolla and Spring Valley. Coronado is across the bay. . Three of the new policies were latebreakers, meaning they were not open to the same review as the other 2008 policies and will serve as interim policies until they are reviewed by the Governing Council at its 2009 meeting. For more information on any of these policies, e-mail email@example.com.
(Disclaimer: These brief descriptions are not comprehensive and do not include every point, statement or conclusion presented in the policies. For the full 2008 policies, visit www.apha.org/advocacy/policy.)
20081 Vitamin D vitamin D
Any of a group of fat-soluble alcohols important in calcium metabolism in animals to form strong bones and teeth and prevent rickets and osteoporosis. It is formed by ultraviolet radiation (sunlight) of sterols (see steroid) present in the skin. deficiency/insufficiency--Recognizes that vitamin D deficiency Vitamin D Deficiency Definition
Vitamin D deficiency exists when the concentration of 25-hydroxy-vitamin D (25-OH-D) in the blood serum occurs at 12 ng/ml (nanograms/milliliter), or less. and insufficiency are major public health concerns for both children and adults in the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. , leading to muscle weakness, osteoporosis and other health concerns. Notes that black Americans are at highest risk for vitamin D deficiency and that although intoxication intoxication, condition of body tissue affected by a poisonous substance. Poisonous materials, or toxins, are to be found in heavy metals such as lead and mercury, in drugs, in chemicals such as alcohol and carbon tetrachloride, in gases such as carbon monoxide, and with the vitamin is rare, it can cause health problems such as hypercalcemia Hypercalcemia Definition
Hypercalcemia is an abnormally high level of calcium in the blood, usually more than 10.5 milligrams per deciliter of blood. . Calls for more research to determine therapeutic or optimal levels of vitamin D that would help prevent disease, especially in high-risk groups such as the elderly. Calls for research into food fortification Food fortification is the public health policy of adding Micronutrients (essential trace elements and vitamins) to foodstuffs to ensure that minimum dietary requirements are met. and the optimal levels to reduce the chance of toxicity.
20082 Smoking in feature films-Notes that growing literature links adolescents' exposure to viewing smoking in movies to initiation of their own smoking behavior. Urges the Motion Picture Association of America to endorse and initiate efforts to implement the four objectives of the Smoke Free Movies Project: rate new films showing or implying tobacco use as "R," post a certificate in the credits at the end of the movie declaring no payoffs for using or displaying tobacco products, require strong anti-smoking ads before any film with a tobacco presence, and stop identifying tobacco brands in any movie scene. Encourages state attorneys general to endorse and advocate for the implementation of objectives in the Smoke Free Movies Project. Requests that Congress pursue opportunities to regulate the showcasing and use of products with public health consequences, such as tobacco.
20083 Safe, legal abortion access--Urges state lawmakers to repeal or oppose state laws that in any way limit access to safe abortion services, including mandatory delays and information or counseling that is not science-based, bans on specific abortion procedures, parental consent Parental consent laws (also known as parental involvement or parental notification laws) in some countries require that one or more parents consent to or be notified before their minor child can legally engage in certain activities. or notification requirements, targeted regulation of abortion providers, and limits for advanced practice clinicians in providing abortion services. Supports state laws that improve abortion access, including funding for abortion via state Medicaid funds Noun 1. Medicaid funds - public funds used to pay for Medicaid
cash in hand, finances, funds, monetary resource, pecuniary resource - assets in the form of money and protecting health facilities and clinicians that provide abortion services. Also supports state laws that maintain medical decision-making within the patient-health care provider relationship, that strengthen the current federal protection on the right to access abortion under Roe v. Wade Roe v. Wade, case decided in 1973 by the U.S. Supreme Court. Along with Doe v. Bolton, this decision legalized abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy. , and that allow trained advanced practice clinicians to provide medical and aspiration abortions.
20084 Ban on lead use in paints, consumer products--Urges a worldwide ban on the continued use of residential lead-based paint, the removal of lead content in all paint and children's products, and the elimination of all nonessential non·es·sen·tial
Being a substance required for normal functioning but not needed in the diet because the body can synthesize it. uses of lead in all consumer products. Urges all trade agreements include provisions that formally and effectively ban the use of lead in residential paint and children's products as well as nonessential use of lead in consumer products. Urges the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the American Society for Testing and Materials International to quickly complete a lead-in-vinyl standard. Calls for agencies of the U.S. federal government to enforce a ban on the manufacture, import, distribution and sale of all children's and consumer products containing nonessential lead, and to devise and implement an effective monitoring, quality control and quality assurance program.
20085 Routine removal of wisdom teeth--Recommends that public information about the removal of third molars be based on evidence of diagnosed pathology or demonstrable need. Opposes prophylactic prophylactic /pro·phy·lac·tic/ (pro?-fi-lak´tik)
1. tending to ward off disease; pertaining to prophylaxis.
2. an agent that tends to ward off disease.
n. removal of third molars. Recommends that the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality,
n.pr formerly known as the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, this agency researches the quality of medical care and health services. , the National Institutes of Health and other independent researchers call for convening an expert panel that considers evidence-based research on the effectiveness and appropriateness of prophylactic removal of third molars and generates a consensus statement. Recommends that oral health researchers and funding agencies include in their research agendas support for the application of evidence-based dental practice Noun 1. dental practice - the practice of dentistry
practice - the exercise of a profession; "the practice of the law"; "I took over his practice when he retired" . Urges all public health agencies and dental professional organizations to disseminate information explaining why prophylactic removal of third molars is not recommended.
20086 Patients rights to death with dignity--Supports allowing a mentally competent, terminally ill Terminally Ill
When a person is not expected to live more than 12 months.
Any gifts given out by the afflicted person at this time may be considered as a dispersion of the estate rather than a gift. adult to obtain prescriptions for medication that the person could self-administer to control the time, place and manner of her or his impending im·pend
intr.v. im·pend·ed, im·pend·ing, im·pends
1. To be about to occur: Her retirement is impending.
2. death, whereas safeguards equivalent to those in the Oregon Death with Dignity Act Ballot Measure 16 of 1994 established the U.S. state of Oregon's Death with Dignity Act (ORS 127.800-995), which legalizes physician-assisted dying with certain restrictions. Passage of this initiative made Oregon the first U.S. are in place. Encourages that where such option is available to vulnerable populations, including people with a disability that existed prior to the terminal illness, data be collected on the incidence when vulnerable populations and people whose disabilities are independent of their terminal illness choose to hasten their death. Supports provision of information about the full range of end-of-life care options to terminally ill patients permitted by law in the state in which the patient is receiving care.
20087 Community water fluoridation--Reiterates a strong endorsement and recommendation for the fluoridation fluoridation (flr'ĭdā`shən), process of adding a fluoride to the water supply of a community to preserve the teeth of the inhabitants. of all community water systems as a safe and effective public health measure for the prevention of tooth decay Tooth Decay Definition
Tooth decay, which is also called dental cavities or dental caries, is the destruction of the outer surface (enamel) of a tooth. . Recommends that federal, state and local agencies and organizations in the United States promote water fluoridation Water fluoridation is the practice of adding fluoride compounds to water with the intended purpose of reducing tooth decay in the general population. Many North American and Australian municipalities fluoridate their water supplies in the belief that this practice will reduce tooth as the foundation for better oral health. Recommends promotion and increased support by federal, state and local entities for adequate public health infrastructure to assure safe and effective water fluoridation practices, including monitoring, training, technical and financial assistance. Recommends increased federal support for continued research on the safety and effectiveness of water fluoridation and other measures to deliver fluoride to communities and individuals. Supports education efforts on community water fluoridation and other appropriate uses of fluoride to prevent tooth decay.
20088 Interprofessional education--Calls on health professions education programs and schools of public health to incorporate coursework and clinical training emphasizing cross-disciplinary and interprofessional interactions including the development of an interdisciplinary curriculum. Calls upon those programs and schools to evaluate the impact of interprofessional education Interprofessional education (also known as inter-professional education) refers to the teaching and learning of students from different professions together during all or part of their professional training in order to promote collaborative working in their professional practice. on professional practice and health care outcomes as well as to evaluate curricular changes to assess differences in students' and graduates' communication skills, knowledge, attitudes and understanding of the roles of different members of the interprofessional health care team. Encourages providers of continuing professional education to offer training and courses in interprofessional care featuring a multidisciplinary faculty from different disciplines and health care fields. Urges the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and other agencies to fund research on the effectiveness of interprofessional health care education.
20089 Health systems in developing countries--Encourages the U.S. government to support and finance initiatives that are explicitly aimed at building the capacity of health systems in developing countries to address prevention, promotion and curative health care needs. Urges international nongovernmental agencies to sign on to the Code of Conduct for Health System Strengthening in Developing Countries. Recommends that international nongovernmental organizations include capacity building and strengthening of national and local health systems in their projects to ensure long-term sustainability after the project period ends. Urges the International Monetary Fund to alter its policies that have prevented developing country governments from adequately expanding health system capacity and national health work forces. Recommends the U.S. government and other donors increase the resources dedicated to strengthening primary health care in developing countries.
LB-08-01 Global food crisis-Encourages the U.S. government to support and finance initiatives that are explicitly aimed at improving food security and developing long-term and sustainable food production and supply systems around the world to prevent any further acute food crisis and its related consequences. Urges governments and international organizations to provide solutions that will stabilize food production and distribution to meet the global demand for nutritious, adequate and affordable food. Encourages genuine partnerships with affected countries to strengthen food security and join policy development and implementation. Urges those involved in the food and agricultural sectors to be mindful of the environment and climate change when developing food security policies and programs. Recommends the United States revise its food and agriculture policies to decrease shipping and processing costs of food aid.
LB-08-02 Legal U.S. drinking age--Recognizes that research shows that as states lowered the legal drinking age The legal drinking age is a limit assigned by governments to restrict the access of children and youth to alcoholic beverages. In most countries the legal age to purchase alcohol is at least 18, but there are notable exceptions. during the 1970s, there was an increase in alcohol use, traffic crashes and other alcohol-related problems among individuals younger than 21 and that when the drinking age Noun 1. drinking age - the age at which is legal for a person to buy alcoholic beverages
eld, age - a time of life (usually defined in years) at which some particular qualification or power arises; "she was now of school age"; "tall for his eld" was increased to age 21, consumption and alcohol-related problems decreased. Recognizes that the effectiveness of 21 as the legal drinking age is acknowledged by national agencies and organizations such as the National Resource Council, the Institute of Medicine and the American Medical Association American Medical Association (AMA), professional physicians' organization (founded 1847). Its goals are to protect the interests of American physicians, advance public health, and support the growth of medical science. . Urges Congress and the states to maintain and enforce the current drinking age of 21 across all states and resist any efforts to lower the minimum drinking age.
LB-08-03 Health inequities and transportation--Resolves that transportation and land policies need to include consideration of the impacts on social determinants of health Social determinants of health are the economic and social conditions under which people live which determine their health. Virtually all major diseases are primarily determined by specific exposures to these conditions. and equity, such as access to health services health services Managed care The benefits covered under a health contract , healthy food, safe physical activity resources, education and employment. Urges transportation and land-use policies and programs to consider and address disproportionate impacts on vulnerable populations. Recommends that public health students and professionals be trained on the linkages between transportation and land-use systems and policies and their relation to public health. Calls for federal incentives, mandates and regulations to promote state expansion of programs that have been proven to improve traffic injury prevention. Calls for additional research to document the adverse and beneficial health impacts of various elements of the built environment related to transportation and land-use patterns.