AHA, Urban League tackle health disparities

Equity of care

AHA, National Urban League
link up on health equity, diversity

The American Hospital Association and the National Urban League have announced an alliance to advance health equity and diversity in health care leadership in communities across the U.S. “To truly advance health in America, we must improve the quality of care for everybody, in every community,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “These efforts begin by focusing on greater equity of care and more diversity in health care leadership.” The organizations will collaborate on efforts to connect hospital and health system CEOs with local Urban League leaders interested in opportunities to serve on governing boards at hospitals and health systems; develop resources for the field and share best practices on community health worker programs; and promote policy solutions to challenges that affect the health of vulnerable communities. Visit www.aha.org.

Pediatric care

GAO maps out
trauma center availability

An estimated 57 percent of U.S. children live within 30 miles of a Level I or II pediatric trauma center, which can treat all injuries regardless of severity, according to a report released April 26 by the Government Accountability Office. State-level estimates range from zero to more than 90 percent, the GAO said. Pediatric trauma centers have specialized equipment and expertise to care for children. Including both pediatric and adult trauma centers, 80 percent of U.S. children live within 30 miles of a Level I or II center, the GAO said. For more information, visit www.gao.gov.

Public health

CDC adds to guidelines
on flu pandemic planning

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued updated guidance on using nonpharmaceutical interventions to control disease and exposure during a flu pandemic. The guidance incorporates the latest scientific evidence and lessons learned from the 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic, new and updated pandemic assessment and planning tools, and links to pre-pandemic planning guides for different community settings. Categories of nonpharmaceutical interventions include personal protective measures for everyday use; personal protective measures for flu pandemics; community measures; and environmental measures. For more information, visit www.cdc.gov/mmwr.


Groups develop tool to help 
leaders navigate careers

Six organizations, including the AHA’s Institute for Diversity in Health Management, on May 4 released an online resource to help health care leaders from underrepresented groups navigate their career path to senior-level positions. The Executive Diversity Career Navigator offers career development tools and information tailored to the needs and interests of diverse health care executives. The tool will be updated regularly. The tool is available at edcnavigator.org.


Hospital jobs
tick up in April

Employment at the nation's hospitals rose by 0.08 percent in April to a seasonally adjusted 5.1 million people, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in April. That's 4,200 more people than in March and 94,800 more than a year ago. Without the seasonal adjustment, which removes the effect of fluctuations due to seasonal events, hospitals employed 5.09 million people in April — 3,500 fewer than in March and 89,900 more than a year ago. For more information, visit www.bls.gov.

Infectious disease

New hepatitis C cases
surge over 5-year period

The number of new hepatitis C infections reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nearly tripled between 2010 and 2015 to 2,436 a year. Because limited surveillance resources have led to underreporting, the CDC estimates the actual number of new infections is closer to 34,000 a year. While three-quarters of the 3.5 million Americans living with hepatitis C are baby boomers, the agency said, new infections are rising most rapidly among young people, primarily due to injection drug use associated with the opioid epidemic. For more information, visit www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/statistics.