Archive for May, 2013

YTH Live conference in San Francisco: April 7-9, 2013

By Susannah Anderson, MPH

I’m usually a late adopter of new technologies.  I (finally) have a Facebook account that I use periodically, but I still haven’t branched out to Twitter or Instagram.  However, my research focuses on how to improve educational, health, and social outcomes for at-risk youth, an age group that adopts and masters new media and technology very quickly.  Because I’m interested in effective ways to communicate prevention messages to youth, the YTH Live conference in San Francisco was a good fit for my research interests and what I still need to learn about social media.

YTH Live, a conference on youth, technology, and sexual health (formerly called Sex::Tech), is held annually in San Francisco with the goal of bringing together researchers, community workers, and youth to share research and programming information to improve sexual health.  It is a relatively small conference compared to APHA, but I appreciated the smaller size, which allowed me to attend more panels and events.

The primary focus of YTH sessions was effective evidence-based prevention programs, rather than secondary data analysis.  It was exciting to hear about one successful program after another, and to hear about how each addressed specific community needs.  I learned about pregnancy prevention programs in Milwaukee and Hennepin County, MN, and about You Geaux Girl, a Tulane program for pregnancy prevention for older teens in New Orleans. Following the controversial subway ad campaign in New York City, this conversation was particularly timely: how a campaign can be attention-getting, while remaining supportive of young women, young people in general, and young parents.  Sessions addressed pregnancy prevention, connecting young people to welcoming healthcare providers, STI diagnosis and treatment, and marketing.

Since the conference focused heavily on social marketing and social media, many sessions discussed how to best reach young audiences.  I learned about targeting Facebook ads to reach young people (rather than just the organizers’ friends and colleagues), constructing and maintaining online communities for young men who have sex with men (MSM) in rural areas, and San Francisco’s partnership between its health department and its school system.

The relatively small size of this conference facilitated meeting people with similar research interests and in different stages of their careers.   Because its focus is youth, health, and technology, YTH worked to attract high school and undergraduate students to the conference, and I enjoyed talking to students who were interested in and excited about public health, at an age when I had barely known that the field existed.

I returned home to New Orleans enthusiastic about what I had learned at YTH.  I attended the conference to present research with Dr. Gretchen Clum on young women who are HIV-positive, but I learned a great deal more about effective communication, public health, and new technology.

Susannah Anderson is a doctoral student in the Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences. Her research interests center around adolescent health and social determinants of health.


May 21, 2013 at 9:28 am Leave a comment

Local Practicum with OPH Bureau of Family Health – apply by May 13

In 2011 the Louisiana Office of Public Health Bureau of Family Health (BFH) merged the child safety/Child Death Review, Pregnancy-Associated Mortality Review and Fetal and Infant Mortality Review programs into one Mortality Surveillance Program resulting in new jobs and new job processes that are still being shaped. For the Mortality Surveillance Program to continue gaining momentum there needs to be more definition in staff positions, administrative flow and, most importantly, program goals and alignment with national models.

This internship will focus on the creation of manual that can serve as an orientation tool for new staff and a resource guide for current staff. Development of this manual will require interviewing agency staff, documenting existing processes and guidelines researching the policies of other agencies, researching national standards, facilitating meetings, and developing evidence-based recommendations.

Through this project the intern will gain a deep understanding of the BFH Mortality Surveillance Program: how it works on a day to day basis both regionally and at the state level, the over arching goals and the impact on the community. In addition, the intern will gain a broad understanding of infant, child and maternal mortality from a national perspective by researching and compiling national resources.

Through this practicum, the student will:

  1. Describe the functions and processes of a state-level mortality surveillance program.
  2. Research national standards of mortality surveillance of children, pregnant women, and infants, and the efforts of other states in conducting this surveillance.
  3. Develop recommendations of how the Bureau of Family health can improve the morality surveillance process.

This practicum will be preceptored by the OPH BFH Mortality Surveillance Coordinator. To apply, please send:

  • a resume
  • cover letter, and
  • your draft learning objectives

to Shokufeh Ramirez ( by Monday, May 13.

This position is open to any Tulane MPH student. Funding is contingent on the following qualifications: enrollment in the GCHB department and US citizen or permanent resident. Preference is given to those in the MCH concentration.


May 2, 2013 at 12:23 pm Leave a comment

Healthy Start New Orleans Practicum – apply by May 13

Healthy Start New Orleans provides services to residents of Orleans Parish who are pregnant or parenting children under the age of two. Healthy Start promotes healthy communities by nurturing healthy pregnancies, healthy babies, and healthy families.

Healthy Start projects address multiple issues, including:

  • Providing adequate prenatal care
  • Promoting positive prenatal health behaviors
  • Meeting basic health needs (nutrition, housing, psychosocial support)
  • Reducing barriers to access
  • Enabling client empowerment

The services offered by Healthy Start New Orleans include:

Case Management: Healthy Start links families to primary medical care, social services agencies such as WIC, DCFS, GED/Higher Education and Job 1, and mental health and counseling services. Support services including one on one education, support groups, and resource and referral assistance.

Health Education: Healthy Start provides prenatal and parenting classes two days a week at two locations in New Orleans.

Outreach: Healthy Start reaches out to women and families who may be eligible for our services through community events, targeting businesses, and door-to-door canvassing.

Best Babies Zone: in partnership with the Hollygrove Community Development Corporation, and the LSU Health Sciences Center, Healthy Start seeks to improve health, education, economic, social and community systems in the Hollygrove neighborhood by identifying community needs and bringing together resources from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to meet those needs.

Teen Program: Healthy Start provides support to expecting teen mothers and fathers during their pregnancy with services such as educational options, summer employment through Job One, WIC services, public assistance and homebound education services. Case Managers provide resources and referrals and support teens in advocating for their children and developing healthy relationships. In addition, we offer support groups on building healthy relationships, peer pressure, teen domestic violence, increasing support systems, learning about community resources and career education.

To carry out these activities, Healthy Start staff should be competent in a range of public health and maternal and child health areas. The practicum student will conduct a needs assessment of staff in these areas.

Through this practicum, the student will:

  1. Describe the functions and processes of a local Healthy Start program
  2. Research national standards and best practices for Healthy Start programs and the efforts of other organizations in meeting the goals of Healthy Start
  3. Develop an assessment tool for local Healthy Start employees
  4. Develop a core orientation program for Healthy Start staff
  5. Develop a list of resources to fill knowledge and skills gaps and a structure within which  to complete them

This practicum will be preceptored by Healthy Start staff. To apply, please send:

  • a resume
  • cover letter, and
  • your draft learning objectives

to Shokufeh Ramirez ( by Monday, May 13.

This position is open to any Tulane MPH student. Funding is contingent on the following qualifications: enrollment in the GCHB department and US citizen or permanent resident. Preference is given to those in the MCH concentration.

May 1, 2013 at 2:39 pm Leave a comment

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