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Classmate 1:Hedda: Imagine you are in an elevator with an important funder that wants to fund your public health research. What kind of research do you want to conduct to learn more about your public health issue? Share your elevator speech for a public health topic that you are passionate about and share why it is so important to address this public health issue. Feel free to use first person in your response. Here is my answer below:
I am so pleased that you have expressed interest in funding my research on non-medical exemptions from school immunization requirements. I would like to conduct mixed method research ( that is both qualitative and quantitative research) to take a deep dive into the resurgence of measles in school-aged children. I know that your time is a premium so I wanted to briefly outline how I plan to approach this critical public health issue.
This is the Problem: Non-medical exemptions from school immunization requirements
Why is it important? It is important because of the resurgence of measles which is highly contagious. Non –medical exemptions have been shown to contribute to the the resurgence (Nimblett-Clarke, 2021)
Why now? With the issue of vaccine hesitancy and public distrust in vaccines, this may result in an even greater increase of the hesitancy to have school –aged children vaccinated.
Who is impacted and who cares? Children and their health as well as the health of their peers, school administrators, public health officials and the wider community would be impacted and would be interested in any recrudescence of communicable diseases which were previously eradicated. The impact of measles on unvaccinated children is devastating.
In essence, it is the policy makers who influence the laws that impact children, their families and their schools and with my research in our state, it is important that they see the data supporting the need for vaccination and the experiences of Texas and California. They also need to see the difference in policies in turn influences difference in outcomes.
I’d be happy to set up a time to discuss further and answer any questions you may have.
Han, G., Batra, N., Vallejo, A., Schechter, R., Zipprich, J., & Harriman, K. (2019). Notes from the Field: Measles Outbreak in an Era of Stricter Immunization Requirements – California, March 2018. MMWR. Morbidity and mortality weekly report, 68(8), 201–202. https://doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6808a3 Links to an external site.
Hotez P. J. (2016). Texas and Its Measles Epidemics. PLoS medicine, 13(10), e1002153. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1002153 Links to an external site.
National Conference of State Legislators (Nd), States With Religious and Philosophical Exemptions From School Immunization Requirements, Retrieved from https://www.ncsl.org/research/health/school-immunization-exemption-state-laws.aspx Links to an external site.
Nimblett-Clarke A. (2021). The role of vaccine exemptions in the resurgence of measles. JAAPA : official journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, 34(2), 36–40. https://doi.org/10.1097/01.JAA.0000731512.09853.af
Classmate2: Jessica: The American Cancer Society estimated that in 2022 there will be about 268,490 new cases of prostate cancer and 34,500 deaths from prostate cancer in the United States. With about 1 out of 8 men being diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime, it is important that we educate men on the risk factors and ensure they come in for early screening. I stress to everyone that prostate cancer although it may be the second leading cause of death in American men, it is one that can be prevented with timely screening. If we were able to catch more of these cases of prostate cancer at an earlier stage, we can work to decrease the mortality by initiating treatment before the cancer spreads.
There are three main risk factors for prostate cancer: age, race, and family history. According to the American Cancer Society, 6 out of 10 prostate cancer cases are diagnosed after the age of 65 and it is more likely to develop in non-Hispanic Black men. At the Chicago Prostate Foundation our goal is to further promote public awareness, prevention, detection, and treatment for prostate cancer. I appreciate your interest in our organization and can assure you that your funding will help us expand our current research. We are currently working on a project that takes a closer look at prostate cancer screening and diagnosis amongst union workers including firefighters and policemen. Through our work at the foundation we have found that this subgroup of men have been associated with late diagnosis of prostate cancer with an associated poor prognosis. Our research that is underway focuses on revealing the barriers that keep these men from early screening. Once these are identified we intend to use this information to create a public health program that focuses on increasing education and awareness amongst union workers.
American Cancer Society. (n.d.). Key statistics for prostate cancer: Prostate cancer facts. American Cancer Society. Retrieved November 15, 2022, from https://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostate-cancer/about/key-statistics.html
American Cancer Society. (n.d.). Prostate cancer risk factors. American Cancer Society. Retrieved November 15, 2022, from https://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostate-cancer/causes-risks-prevention/risk-factors.html
Mission. Prostate Cancer Foundation of Chicago. (2022, June 29). Retrieved November 15, 2022, from https://chicagoprostatefoundation.org/about-the-pcfc/mission/
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