University of Washington School of Public Health

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SPH Stories

Featured stories about SPH people, research and impact.

* Related links: SPH in the News | SPH Research News | SPH Close Up

Researchers partner with Penn to study costs of Alzheimer's and dementia care

Anirban Basu, a professor in the schools of Pharmacy and Public Health at the University of Washington, has received more than $230,000 from the National Institutes of Health to measure the current and future costs of care for people with dementia. The research is part of a sub-grant from the University of Pennsylvania. (December 13, 2018)

Most syringe exchange clients in Washington state say they want help

Researchers from the University of Washington School of Public Health peeked inside syringe exchange sites in Washington state in 2015 – via surveys – to understand people’s interest in stopping or reducing their opioid use. They found that most people wanted help, but weren’t getting it, according to the study, published this month in the Journal of Addiction Medicine. (December 11, 2018)

Biostatistics student recognized for leadership, community service by Seattle's ARCS Foundation

Kelsey Grinde, a doctoral student in the Department of Biostatistics at the UW School of Public Health, is a recipient of the inaugural Dorothy L. Simpson Leadership Award, presented by the Seattle Chapter of Achievement Rewards for College Scientists Foundation. (December 6, 2018)

Alcohol misuse and unsafely-stored firearms could be a dangerous mix for children

In Washington state, an estimated 470,000 children under 18 live in a firearm-owning household. Among them, over half live in a household in which a firearm has not been safely stored by being unloaded and locked up. A new study led by the University of Washington School of Public Health suggests these children are at increased risk of self-harm and interpersonal violence. (November 30, 2018)

Implementation science student wins $100,000 Grand Challenges Grant from Gates Foundation

Samantha Dolan, a doctoral student at the University of Washington School of Public Health, was awarded a $100,000 Grand Challenges Explorations Grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to improve data collection and monitoring of childhood immunizations at Kenyan health facilities by optimizing workflows. (November 30, 2018)

Global climate report warns of serious threats to health, productivity and livelihoods

Hospitals and health systems exist solely to improving people’s health, yet paradoxically they are a top producer of greenhouse gases that exacerbate climate change, putting people at risk. In a new brief on climate change and health in the United States published today, University of Washington and Harvard University researchers say public health and health care systems are key to preventing further dangerous climate impacts. (November 28, 2018)

Close Up: Amy Hagopian

War has profound public health consequences, yet it's entirely preventable, says Amy Hagopian, who has studied the impact of armed conflict on population health for many years. She has estimated mortality in war zones, taught about the role of health professionals in preventing war, and advocated against nuclear weapons and military recruiting in high schools. Now she is on a mission to help shape the emerging field of war and health. (November 26, 2018)

Gates grant helps global health researcher improve economics of food systems, nutrition

Carol Levin, a clinical associate professor of global health at the University of Washington, was recently awarded nearly $2.5 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to improve food systems, nutrition and health. (November 16, 2018)

International study finds genetic risk for chronic inflammation

Genes contributing to immune and metabolic processes may be linked to chronic inflammation, suggests a new study of genomic data from more than 200,000 individuals. Findings were published online Nov. 1 in the American Journal of Human Genetics. (November 14, 2018)

Biostatistician to advise the UN Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation

Jonathan Wakefield, professor of biostatistics at the University of Washington School of Public Health, was invited to be a member of the technical advisory group to the United Nations (UN) Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation. (November 14, 2018)

Modeling study shows PrEP can reduce HIV risk among young, sexual minority males

Adolescent males who identify as gay or bisexual, or are sexually active with other males, are at high risk for HIV infection. Researchers at the University of Washington (UW) say pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) programs can significantly reduce this risk, especially in communities with high HIV burden. (November 13, 2018)

She dreamt of being a military pilot, now she protects their health and well-being

Through a partnership between the UW School of Public Health’s Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences and Madigan Army Medical Center on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Army physicians receive training in public health with specific training in occupational and environmental medicine. (November 9, 2018)

Duchin elected to the board of the Infectious Diseases Society of America

Dr. Jeff Duchin, health officer for Public Health – Seattle & King County, was elected to the Board of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA). Duchin is also a professor of medicine at the University of Washington, adjunct professor of epidemiology at the UW School of Public Health and member of the Northwest Center for Public Health Practice. (November 5, 2018)

SPH students recognized by Washington State Public Health Association for impact

Two students from the University of Washington School of Public Health received Exceptional Student Awards from the Washington State Public Health Association during its annual conference last month in Wenatchee. (November 5, 2018)

Who should be the 2019 graduation speaker?

The UW School of Public Health will celebrate its next graduating class on Sunday, June 16, 2019, at the Alaska Airlines Arena. Graduation speaker nominations are now being accepted. (November 2, 2018)

Health care leader joins SPH's health administration program

Robert Malte, former chief executive officer (CEO) for EvergreenHealth in Kirkland, Washington, joined the University of Washington School of Public Health on Oct. 1 as the Master of Health Administration (MHA) program’s practitioner-in-residence and clinical associate professor of health services. (October 31, 2018)

Michael Gale Jr. named 2019 Distinguished Alumni Award Winner

Michale Gale Jr. (PhD, Pathobiology, '94) has been named the UW School of Public Health's Distinguished Alumni Award winner for his innovative research, profound impact on global health and dedication to mentoring. (October 26, 2018)

HPV vaccine is safe, effective method of protection for HIV-positive youth in Africa

In a new study, researchers at the University of Washington tested the safety and efficacy of the HPV vaccine on HIV-positive African youth and found a robust immune response to the vaccine. (October 23, 2018)

SPH Endowed Fellow: Manahil Siddiqi

Every year, 12 million girls are married before they are 18 – threatening their health, education, safety and future. Manahil Siddiqi aims to put a stop to it. (October 16, 2018)

SPH Endowed Fellow: Maayan Simckes

Maayan Simckes fell in love with public health at 16, when she traveled to a small mining town in the Peruvian Andes as an environmental sampler for a lead exposure study. Since then, the PhD candidate has been devoted to public health efforts with real-time impact on community health and resilience. (October 16, 2018)

Health care leader joins MHA program

Robert Malte, former chief executive officer for EvergreenHealth, is the new practitioner-in-residence for the Master of Health Administration program at the University of Washington School of Public Health, effective Oct. 1. (October 16, 2018)

Faculty support that fosters collaboration

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Ross Prentice Endowed Professorship for Biostatistical Collaboration. The Prentice Endowed Professorship was established in 1998 by the University of Washington and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center to honor the continuing service and collaborative spirit of Dr. Prentice to both institutions. (October 16, 2018)

Options within the Public Health - Global Health Major

The School’s popular public health major has evolved into the Public Health – Global Health Major to better reflect its domestic and global competencies. (October 16, 2018)

Alumni profile: Salima Alibhai

While visiting rural villages in Pakistan in 2015, Salima Alibhai (Executive MPH ’13) was stunned to see children, sometimes as young as 5 years, with red-stained teeth. (October 16, 2018)

Food systems, nutrition and health

The world faces food problems on multiple fronts: Obesity is skyrocketing in some countries, yet millions of people don’t get the nutrients they need. Climate change and conflict, meanwhile, are compounding our ability to feed the world’s growing population. At the same time, about a third of food produced ends up in the trash.

Undergraduates at the University of Washington School of Public Health will grapple with these issues in a new major on Food Systems, Nutrition and Health. (October 16, 2018)

2018-19 Grayston-Day Endowed Fellows

The Grayston-Day awards seek to increase the number of health professionals from diverse communities by funding the education of underrepresented students in the public health field. (October 17, 2018)

Updates on Equity Diversity and Inclusion October 2018

Student travel awards, a summer program that serves as a pipeline for potential public health students, and faculty-of-color gatherings. Read more about updates on equity, diversity and inclusion. (October 15, 2018)

Ask Dean Hilary Godwin

We invited new and returning students to pose questions to Hilary Godwin, who joined the SPH as our new dean in July. Here is a sampling of their queries, and Dean Godwin’s answers. (October 10, 2018)

Hagopian to receive prestigious peace award from the APHA

Amy Hagopian of the University of Washington School of Public Health will receive the Victor Sidel and Barry Levy Award for Peace from the American Public Health Association (APHA) at the APHA Annual Meeting & Expo in San Diego on Nov. 13. (October 10, 2018)

Park facilities encourage longer bouts of physical activity, study finds

Researchers from the University of Washington School of Public Health watched 225 Seattle residents during their visits to public parks – through GPS devices, activity trackers and travel diaries – and found that they were active for longer at parks that had a greater variety of recreational facilities. (October 9, 2018)

Researchers win $680,000 NIH grant to develop mHealth tool to improve HIV care

Brandon Guthrie and Keshet Ronen from the University of Washington School of Public Health were awarded a three-year, nearly $680,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to develop a mobile health tool to support youth transitioning from pediatric to adult HIV care in Kenya. (September 14, 2018)

Breakthrough study identifies 535 genes that influence blood pressure

Researchers have newly identified more than 500 genetic regions that influence people’s blood pressure in the largest global genetic study of blood pressure to date. (September 28, 2018)

UW SPH Dean Urges Emergency Shelter for Region's Homeless

Providing emergency shelter to the region’s homeless before bad weather hits could save lives and protect the health of the community, UW School of Public Health Dean Hilary Godwin told the King County Board of Health. (September 21, 2018)

Projecting heat-related deaths in a warming climate

Large parts of the world could experience dramatic increases in heat-related deaths under scenarios of greater climate change, according to a paper published September 13 in the journal Climate Change. Researchers argue that the world needs to keep global temperatures in check by meeting the goals set out in the Paris Agreement. (September 18, 2018)

Dengue vaccine development taps new approach

Vaccine strategy focuses on specific amino acid sequences in virus' outer shell protein and on improving effectiveness in young children. (September 14, 2018)

HIV care in the US sees big gains, but disparities remain

Improved treatment has nearly tripled viral suppression rates among people living with HIV in the United States over the past two decades, but disparities still exist for younger and African-American patients, according to a new study from the University of Washington. (September 5, 2018)

Testing strategies to combat the opioid epidemic

A research team at the University of Washington School of Public Health will receive a $5 million funding award from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to study strategies to prevent unsafe opioid prescribing in workers’ compensation programs in two states. (September 5, 2018)

Close Up: Irene Njuguna

Irene Njuguna was on a path to becoming a pediatrician when she realized there were gaps in the health care system that she could not heal. She eventually found her place in HIV research, where she tests inventive strategies to find some of the world's most vulnerable children, those with HIV. She's been published 13 times, all while raising two kids of her own. (August 27, 2018)

UW deans oppose EPA 'secret science' rule

Two University of Washington deans and a prominent UW researcher are urging the US Environmental Protection Agency to withdraw a proposed rule that would limit scientific research the agency could use when evaluating threats to public health and the environment. (August 22, 2018)

Center wins 2018 APEX award for action guide about dementia

The Healthy Brain Research Network (HBRN) within the Health Promotion Research Center in the University of Washington School of Public Health has won a 2018 APEX Grand Award for Publication Excellence. (August 17, 2018)

National panel of experts says limit low-calorie sodas, stick to water instead

A group of leading nutritionists, doctors and researchers caution against the regular and long-term consumption of diet beverages, especially for children. In a science advisory published July 30 in Circulation, the group recommends that people should drink more plain or carbonated water instead. (August 13, 2018)

Researchers Win $2.7 Million NIH Grant to Reduce Child Mortality in Mozambique

A project by the University of Washington, in partnership with the Ministry of Health in Mozambique, has received a five-year, $2.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health/Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development to jump-start stalled declines in child mortality by improving interventions delivered at or near the time of birth. (August 7, 2018)

Biostatistics professor receives 2018 Simons Investigator Award

Daniela Witten, a professor of biostatistics at the University of Washington School of Public Health, has been named a 2018 Simons Investigator in Mathematical Modeling of Living Systems by the New York-based Simons Foundation. (August 1, 2018)

Biostatistics students win at 2018 WNAR student paper competition

Four students from the Department of Biostatistics at the University of Washington School of Public Health took home top honors last month at the 2018 student paper competition hosted by the Western North American Region (WNAR) of the International Biometric Society. (August 1, 2018)

Reducing obesity among public housing residents

A new study led by a University of Washington health promotion researcher shows that an intervention in public housing communities has the potential to reduce obesity among residents. (August 1, 2018)

UW SPH launches new major in food systems, nutrition and health

The University of Washington will offer a new major this year to undergraduate students interested in the connections between food systems, nutrition and health. A Bachelor of Arts in Food Systems, Nutrition and Health (FSNH) was approved in July by UW President Ana Mari Cauce and by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. (July 30, 2018)

Public health major evolves into 'Public Health Global Health' degree

The University of Washington School of Public Health’s popular public health major has been renamed the “Public Health—Global Health Major” to better reflect its domestic and global competencies. The change, approved recently by UW President Ana Mari Cauce, takes effect immediately. (July 23, 2018)

Students push public transit policy

Students from the University of Washington School of Public Health met with the Seattle City Council’s Sustainability & Transportation Committee last month to discuss ways to expand access to public transit benefits for low-income and small business workers. (July 20, 2018)

Shaping the future of research and action on war and health

Scholars from the UW School of Public Health were among 20 experts invited by The Lancet to Beirut, Lebanon, last month to discuss ways to advance the academic field of “war and health.” (July 18, 2018)

11 faculty promoted, 4 receive tenure

Eleven core faculty members in the UW School of Public Health were promoted and four were conferred tenure, effective July 1. (July 17, 2018)

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