News & Announcements
Multicultural Mental Health Outreach through Ministries (posted 3/15)
Posted: March 15, 2010
This recent article from the National Alliance on Mental Illness's (NAMI) Faithnet Newsletter focuses on a program that trains congregations on how to start mental health ministries for diverse communities. The article outines the basic strategies that the Faith-based Mental Health Initiative out of NAMI San Antonio utilizes to train congregations and provides contact information for those wishing to learn more or start this program in their own communities. The article was authored by a member of the NNED's Faith-Based Learning Cluster, Yolanda Ortega. To read the article click here. To learn more about NAMI San Antonio's Faith-based Mental Health Initiative click here.
Data Collection and Reporting on Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Health (posted 3/15)
Posted: March 15, 2010
This document summarizes the recommendations from the very first national convening of the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Health Brain Trust on Data & Research held in Las Vegas, Nevada, April 14-16, 2009. A Call to Action: More Data Collection and Reporting on Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Health to Eliminate Health Disparities was developed by the Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) in response to the urgent need for more baseline data and evidence-based research on the health and healthcare issues of the NHPI population. "There are large data gaps regarding the NHPI population in federally funded surveys or studies. In such studies or surveys the NHPI category is generally nonexistent, lumped together with Asian Americans, or minimally represented in data presentation formats. It is important to utizlize data and research as tools to help ensure access to quality primary and preventive services, especially for communities of color and indigenous peoples such as the NHPI population."
Mental health and substance use disorders were one of the major issues identified in the report for the NHPI community: "Mental health and substance use disorders were also identified as pressing issues since many NHPIs are not accessing needed primary health care nor complying with medical treatment. Native Hawaiian adolescents on the continent have higher risk and rates of suicide than other adolescents in Hawaii. Surveyed teens say that they feel a strong sense of ethnic identity can help protect them from depression and anxiety and boost their levels of self-acceptance."
Ludacris & Jamie Foxx Target Black Youth in Social Media Push on HIV (posted 3/11)
Posted: March 11, 2010
The Centers for Disease Control has launched a new social media campaign aimed at black youth in order to raise awareness about the alarming rate of new HIV infections every year in the black community. The "i know" campaign aims to draw thousands of young people into a conversation about HIV using Facebook, Twitter, and text messages through the iKnow website. The website features two videos of Jamie Foxx and Ludacris talking about the importance of breaking the silence surrounding HIV/AIDS in the black community. “We’re trying to create a movement,” said Dr. Kevin Fenton, director of CDC’s National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention. CDC hopes the effort will transform young black Americans from passive consumers of HIV prevention messages into vocal advocates who will spread the word to others. “i know” is part of the five-year, $45 million “Act Against AIDS” initiative announced last year at the White House. CDC’s Robert Bailey II said AAA’s mission is to “refocus attention on the HIV epidemic here at home” after years of addressing it globally. For more information click here.
Racial/Ethnic Disparities Among Children with Perinatal HIV Infection (posted 3/10)
Posted: March 10, 2010
A new article out of the Centers for Disease Control demonstrates that racial disparities in HIV/AIDS continue to exist, in particular for children diagnosed with perinatal HIV infection. The article titled “Racial/Ethnic Disparities among Children with Diagnoses of Perinatal HIV Infection – 34 States, 2004-2007” was published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) at the beginning of February. The article shows that despite substantial declines in the number of HIV-infected infants in the United States, racial/ethnic minorities, especially African Americans, continue to be most significantly impacted by perinatal transmission. Although black and Hispanic children only accounted for 37 percent of the population under the age of one, these groups represented 85 percent of all perinatal HIV diagnoses. Because the risk of transmission from an HIV-infected mother to her child can be greatly reduced with effective interventions, the authors emphasize it is critical all women – especially African Americans and Latinas – have access to HIV prevention, reproductive health care, prenatal care and, if necessary, HIV treatment. To read the article click here.
Bans on Same-Sex Marriage May Affect Mental Health (posted 3/10)
Posted: March 10, 2010
A new study out of the Journal of Public Health shows that gay, lesbian, and bisexual people living in states with institutional discrimination - such as bans on same-sex marriage - are at increased risk of psychiatric disorders, reports Business Week. Researchers analyzed data from lesbians, gays and bisexuals who were interviewed in 2001-2002 and 2004-2005 for the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions. The participants lived in states that instituted constitutional amendments banning gay marriage following the 2004-2005 elections. The researchers found a significant increase in the prevalence of mood disorders, generalized anxiety disorders and alcohol use disorders among lesbians, gays and bisexuals after the states banned gay marriage. The greatest increase - more than 200 percent - was seen in generalized anxiety disorder. "Before this study, little was known about the impact of institutional discrimination toward lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) individuals in our society," senior author Deborah Hasin, an epidemiologist at Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute, said in a university news release. "The study highlights the importance of abolishing institutional forms of discrimination, including those leading to disparities in the mental health and well-being of LGB individuals." To read the Business Week article click here.
To view the abstract of the study on the website of AJPH click here.
For additional information about the relationship between same-sex marriage bans and the health and wellbeing of LGBT families, go to GLMA’s Marriage Equality Project website, click here.