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2020 News Releases

Dr. Felicia Knaul Weighs in on the Importance of Palliative Care in the Time of COVID-19

Felicia Knaul, Ph.D., director of the Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas and professor at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences, has been a long-time advocate for worldwide palliative care. In the time of COVID-19, Dr. Knaul, who is an expert in Latin American health systems and social sectors and an international health economist, weighed in on the importance of palliative care in tackling the pandemic.

April 1, 2020
Mindfulness During Uncertain Times

David J. Lee, Ph.D., professor at the Department of Public Health Sciences and education director for the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, recently recorded two mindfulness practices drawn from a program called Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) – an eight-week evidence-based program. This recording has been released to the University of Miami community, as well as to the general public. Participate from the comfort of your home.

March 30, 2020
African Americans Have a Higher Cancer Mortality Rate than African Immigrants, Experts Find

While Blacks in the U.S. bear a disproportionate cancer mortality burden, race itself is not the primary causal factor of these disparities, according to a study recently published in Cancer Epidemiology.

March 30, 2020
UM Experts to Study the Impacts of COVID-19 on Medical Cannabis Patients 

Medicinal cannabis users – one of the many vulnerable populations that may be disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 – have been advised to prepare for possible delays in health care delivery. Learn more about a new University of Miami-led study that is seeking to leverage epidemiology expertise and collect data on the patterns and trends of this vulnerable population amid the rapidly evolving status of COVID-19. 

March 27, 2020
Department of Public Health Sciences Implements its First Online Course

Public health and healthcare program evaluations are key to a program’s outcome, efficiency, and quality of health care. The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences has launched “Fundamentals of Program Evaluation” – its first asynchronous course, where 27 students are learning how to conduct such evaluations in a public health setting.

March 24, 2020
Study Analyzes Risk Behavior and Syringe Coverage among participants accessing the IDEA Exchange

A study recently published in the International Journal of Drug Policy provides important comparative data on the differences in demographic characteristics, risk behaviors, and syringe coverage among people who inject drugs. The goal of the study was to provide policy considerations based on the IDEA Exchange – the first legal syringe exchange program in the state of Florida – to show the importance of tailored prevention strategies, as well as to show the need for reform to the strict one-for-one syringe exchange policy at the state level.

March 24, 2020
The Miami-Dade Mosquito Control Division Visits the Department of Public Health Sciences
The Miami-Dade Mosquito Control Division gave a lecture at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences, where graduate students also had the opportunity to interact with professionals and learn from their real-world experiences, as well learn more about the challenges to control vector mosquitoes in Miami. Since 2019, the Miami-Dade Mosquito Control Division has had a partnership with the University of Miami.
March 13, 2020
Infectious Disease and Public Health Experts Weigh in on the Coronavirus Disease 2019

Dr. Baracco, an infectious disease specialist at the Miami Veterans Affairs Health System and professor at the Miller School of Medicine, engaged in a Q&A with the Department of Public Health Sciences on the respiratory disease. Dr. José Szapocznik, chair emeritus and professor at the Department of Public Health Sciences, also participated in the Q&A.

This Q&A was originally published on February 27, 2020 and was updated on March 12, 2020. 
University of Miami School of Education and Human Development Leads Panel on Tackling the Opioid Epidemic

The University of Miami School of Education and Human Development invited five key stakeholders and leaders in the field to a panel discussion that addressed the implications for prevention and treatment in tackling the opioid epidemic. 

March 6, 2020
Department of Public Health Sciences More than Doubles in NIH Research Grant Funding

The department received $11.8 million in National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded research grants in Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2019, raising the department from No. 19 in FFY2018 ($5.4 million) to No. 13 in FFY2019 ($11.8 million) – according to the Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research – in public health departments within medical schools. The department also increased four spots since FFY2018 (No. 8), placing it as the fourth-highest NIH-funded department within the Miller School of Medicine. For rankings compared to schools of public health, the department is now No. 20, representing a seven-spot increase from FFY2018 (No. 27).

February 27, 2020
Dr. Hansel Tookes Named as One of the 2020 Herald Influencers

Hansel Tookes, M.D., M.P.H., an alumnus of the Master of Public Health program at the Department of Public Health Sciences, was one of two University of Miami leaders to be selected to the Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald and Bradenton Herald 2020 Florida Influencers series. Dr. Tookes and a group of statewide leaders from a variety of perspectives and industries will assess major challenges in the state of Florida, as well as find solutions for these challenges.

February 27, 2020
Study Examines 33-Year Data to Investigate Cancer Risk in over 100,000 Career Florida Firefighters

A new study published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine examined cancer risk in over 100,000 career Florida firefighters, including approximately 5,000 females who were assessed from 1981 to 2014. Researchers from the NCI-designated Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, Department of Public Health Sciences, as well as the Florida Cancer Data System co-authored the study. 

February 27, 2020
Attractive Toxic Sugar Baits Found to be An Effective Mosquito Control Method in Mali, West Africa

In a study recently published in Malaria Journal, researchers found that attractive toxic sugar baits are an effective control method of the Anopheles mosquitoes in Mali, West Africa, where sustained malaria transmission occurs despite the use of other control methods.

February 27, 2020
Global Public Health Protection Against the Spread of Infectious Diseases

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Global Public Health Institute at the University of Miami, in a unique collaboration with the Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences, will engage in global public health policy analysis and research to generate objective evidence that can help guide improvements in public health policy at the global, regional, national and local levels. This collaboration will be led by Dr. Jorge Saavedra, executive director at the AHF Institute, and Dr. José Szapocznik, who is chair emeritus and professor at the Department of Public Health Sciences, on behalf of the University of Miami.

February 27, 2020
Public Health Researchers to Study a Mindfulness-Based Smoking Cessation Smartphone Application for People Living With HIV

Taghrid Asfar, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor in the Division of Epidemiology and Population Health Sciences at the Department of Public Health Sciences, and a group of public health experts are working on a study that will develop a mindfulness smartphone application for smoking cessation, specifically targeting people who live with HIV. The project, funded by the Center for AIDS Research, will adapt an existing mindfulness-based smoking cessation smartphone application – Craving to Quit – for people living with HIV.

February 27, 2020
Upcoming Priority Deadline for Graduate Programs in Public Health at the Department of Public Health Sciences

The priority deadline for various graduate programs in public health at the Miller School of Medicine's Department of Public Health Sciences is March 1, 2020. These programs, all accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health, include the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.), Accelerated M.P.H., Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.), and Bachelor of Science in Public Health/M.P.H. or M.S.P.H. 

February 6, 2020
Upcoming Priority Deadline for Graduate Programs in Biostatistics, Climate and Health, and Prevention Science and Community Health at the Department of Public Health Sciences

The priority deadline for various Master of Science (M.S.) programs in public health at the University of Miami (UM) Miller School of Medicine's Department of Public Health Sciences is March 1, 2020. These programs, all accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health, include the M.S. in Biostatistics, M.S. in Climate and Health, and M.S. in Prevention Science and Community Health.

February 6, 2020
New Public Health Scholarship Program to Launch in Fall 2020

The Department of Public Health Sciences announced a new scholarship program for prospective Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) and Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) students who enroll in the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters. Eligible candidates will receive up to 25 percent in tuition scholarship awards. Students who are awarded the scholarship are required to complete the M.P.H. or M.S.P.H. degree, both of which are 45-credit programs.

January 21, 2020
Journal of Public Health Student Capstones is Now Accepting Submissions

The Journal of Public Health Student Capstones, led by the Miller School of Medicine's Department of Public Health Sciences, is a faculty/practitioner-reviewed journal that is dedicated to publishing scholarly work by students as part of their fieldwork and capstone experiences in public health. The journal is now accepting submissions from graduate and undergraduate students and the first inaugural issue will be published in the summer of 2020.

January 21, 2020
Upcoming Priority Deadline for Graduate Programs in Public Health at the Department of Public Health Sciences

The priority deadline for various graduate programs in public health at the Miller School of Medicine's Department of Public Health Sciences is March 1, 2020. These programs, all accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health, include the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.), Accelerated M.P.H., Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.), and Bachelor of Science in Public Health/M.P.H. or M.S.P.H. 

February 6, 2020
Upcoming Priority Deadline for Graduate Programs in Biostatistics, Climate and Health, and Prevention Science and Community Health at the Department of Public Health Sciences

The priority deadline for various Master of Science (M.S.) programs in public health at the University of Miami (UM) Miller School of Medicine's Department of Public Health Sciences is March 1, 2020. These programs, all accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health, include the M.S. in Biostatistics, M.S. in Climate and Health, and M.S. in Prevention Science and Community Health.

February 6, 2020
New Public Health Scholarship Program to Launch in Fall 2020

The Department of Public Health Sciences announced a new scholarship program for prospective Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) and Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) students who enroll in the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters. Eligible candidates will receive up to 25 percent in tuition scholarship awards. Students who are awarded the scholarship are required to complete the M.P.H. or M.S.P.H. degree, both of which are 45-credit programs.

January 21, 2020
Journal of Public Health Student Capstones is Now Accepting Submissions

The Journal of Public Health Student Capstones, led by the Miller School of Medicine's Department of Public Health Sciences, is a faculty/practitioner-reviewed journal that is dedicated to publishing scholarly work by students as part of their fieldwork and capstone experiences in public health. The journal is now accepting submissions from graduate and undergraduate students and the first inaugural issue will be published in the summer of 2020.

January 21, 2020
HIV Prevention and Care Interventions are Cost-Effective or Cost-Saving Across Four U.S. Cities, Researchers Find

Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), a Florida Drug Administration-approved medication that can prevent HIV if taken daily, for example, was cost-saving in Miami and cost-effective in Atlanta, Baltimore, and Los Angeles, specifically for high-risk men who have sex with men. They found that interventions made to improve antiretroviral therapy initiation, such as PrEP, gave greater value than other treatment engagement interventions. No single intervention, however, was projected to reduce HIV incidence by more than 10.1 percent in any city.

January 21, 2020
Researchers Report on Invasive Alien Mosquito Species in America and Europe

Miller School of Medicine’s Andre Wilke, Ph.D., a post-doctoral associate, John Beier, Sc.D., professor and director of the Division of Environment and Public Health, as well as University of Pisa’s Giovanni Benelli, Ph.D., a senior research entomologist at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment, co-authored a viewpoint paper on the A. albopictus in Europe and C. coronator Dyar and Knab in America – two highly invasive mosquito species. In the paper, which was published in Plos One, they shed light on key biological, ecological, and epidemiological issues that urgently need further attention at the forefront of vector biology and control research and provide suggestions for future research on the development of control strategies.

January 21, 2020
Network-Based Interventions Can Have Positive Effects on HIV Prevention and Treatment Outcomes for Latinos, Study Finds

A study, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, found significant changes in cognitive factors, such as in HIV knowledge, condom use self-efficacy, and adequate knowledge of condom use, behavioral factors, such as condom use, female condom use, and HIV testing, and communication factors, such as talking with friends about HIV prevention and intention to negotiate safe sex with male partners.

January 21, 2020
Researchers Report on the Double Environmental Injustice of Climate Change in the Bahamas

In the paper, public health experts noted that socioeconomically disadvantaged and marginalized populations are experiencing disproportionate harm and loss as more hazardous storms are worsening conditions. While small-island states, which are populations that are most vulnerable to Atlantic hurricanes, contribute nearly nothing to climate change, they are also most exposed to risks that are worsened by the carbon emissions from higher-income countries.

January 21, 2020
A Renewed Focus on Epidemiology Education

Epidemiology is evolving in its concepts and principles. As the scientific foundation of public health, epidemiology education should be continually examined to ensure that learners receive appropriate training. To gather insight, Dr. WayWay M. Hlaing, professor at the Miller School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences, collected doctoral-level epidemiology competencies from relevant leaders and directors of Ph.D. in epidemiology programs from accredited schools and programs of public health, as well as other pertinent information.

January 21, 2020
Department of Public Health Sciences Alumni Conduct Research on Racial Disparities Among American Film Celebrities

Alumni of the M.S.P.H. program in the department, as well as two public health professors, investigated the survival differences between black and white film celebrities in a paper published in the Interactive Journal of Medical Research.

January 21, 2020 
Researchers Address the Mental Health Needs of Hurricane Maria Survivors in Central Florida

After Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico in September 2017, an estimated 100,000 Puerto Ricans fled to Florida, the state with the largest Puerto Rican population in mainland United States. Central Florida, which encompasses Orlando and the surrounding areas, received the most Hurricane Maria survivors. Today, displaced families continue to face challenges as they rebuild their lives. Dr. Seth Schwartz, professor, and Dr. Adriane Gelpi, assistant professor, both from the Department of Public Health Sciences, examined the mental health needs of adolescent Hurricane Maria survivors in Central Florida.

January 21, 2020
Researchers Examine Whether Racial Discrimination in Medical Settings is Protective for Blacks Against Opioid Pain Reliever Misuse

Dr. Samuel Swift, an alumnus of the Ph.D. in Epidemiology and Population Health program in the department, served as the lead author on a study that examined whether racial discrimination in medical settings is protective for blacks against opioid pain reliever misuse.

January 21, 2020