Concerns About Spread Of COVID Tempers Heat Relief Efforts
Keeping in mind that the coronavirus that can spread indoors, cities and relief organizations are adjusting how they keep people safe in the sweltering summer heat. Also in news on public health, a look at mental health apps, weapons used against protesters, vaccination rates and children's brain development.
Extreme Heat And Covid-19: Experts Fear The Twin Threats Create A Recipe For Danger In Vulnerable Communities
This weekend, as a heat wave bakes huge swaths of the country under triple-digit heat indexes, some fear that the collision of Covid-19 and extreme heat could be a dangerous combination. Extreme heat can threaten anyone, but many of the same groups who are at greatest risk of serious illness from the coronavirus are also the most vulnerable groups to heat exposure. (Kann, 7/24)
New Research Finds A Wide Gulf In Engagement With Mental Health Apps
A first-of-its-kind analysis, conducted in collaboration with researchers at Microsoft, paints a detailed picture of how people do — or don’t — engage with virtual mental health tools, a step toward expanding the use of digital therapeutics. Lackluster engagement has long been a thorn in the health tech industry’s side: As mental health tools proliferate, their uptake and long-term use remain relatively low. That problem has taken on new urgency as the pandemic shunts patients from in-person to online treatment. (Isselbacher, 7/24)
Kaiser Health News and USA Today:
Less-Lethal Weapons Blind, Maim And Kill. Victims Say Enough Is Enough.
There’s a gap in Scott Olsen’s memory for the night of Oct. 25, 2011. The Iraq War vet remembers leaving his tech job in the San Francisco Bay Area and taking a BART train to join an Occupy Oakland protest against economic and social inequality. He remembers standing near protesters who faced off with Oakland police officers bristling with riot gear. He remembers being carried away by other protesters. But not the moment when a “bean bag” round fired from an officer’s 12-gauge shotgun crashed into the left side of his head, fracturing his skull and inflicting a near-fatal brain injury that forced him to relearn how to talk. (Slack, Wagner, Hancock, McCoy, 7/24)
Nearly 60% Of US Parents Say They Won't Vaccinate Their Kids Against HPV
Nearly 60% of the parents of about 4.3 million US children don't intend to have them vaccinated against the highly infectious and sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV), according to survey results published earlier this week in The Lancet Public Health. Researchers at the University of Texas at Houston analyzed the data of parents of 82,297 children 13 to 17 years old from the 2017-18 National Immunization Study. They found even higher vaccine hesitancy rates (higher than 65%) in Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and Utah. (7/23)
The New York Times:
How Play Energizes Your Kid’s Brain
To the untrained eye, play can seem aimless, repetitive, wild or foolish. But play can offer a window into the developing mind. Piaget viewed certain kinds of play as milestones, signs that a child had reached a new stage of development. Studies conducted over the past few decades suggest play serves a more crucial role. Play can help kids learn, plan and even persevere in the face of adversity. (Willyard, 7/21)