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Research Activities

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June 2006, No. 310


About Research Activities

Feature Story

Use of ACE inhibitors during the first trimester of pregnancy is related to an increased risk of birth defects

Pharmaceutical Research

National survey of community pharmacies examines workload, available technology, and perceptions of drug alert systems

Disparities/Minority Health

Limited health care access impairs blood sugar control among low-income urban blacks with type 2 diabetes
Blacks are more likely than whites and Hispanics to die following cardiovascular procedures, despite hospital experience
More data are needed to better identify health care disparities among American Indians and Alaska Natives
Disadvantaged blacks differ from disadvantaged whites in beliefs about genetic testing

Child/Adolescent Health

Antidepressant use doubled among adolescents from 1997 to 2002, with no change among children younger than 13 years
A simple pocket card that assesses the symptoms and severity of a child's acute ear infection can aid treatment decisions

Patient Safety and Quality

Hospital patient safety systems show moderate progress in meeting Institute of Medicine recommendations

Women's Health

Primary care assessment of intimate partner violence and referrals may prevent its recurrence
A year after leaving jail, half of women lack health insurance or use primary care
Half of postpartum depression cases are not recognized
Increasing cervical cancer screening intervals is cost-effective for women with three consecutive normal Pap smears
Menopausal hormone therapy declined after published WHI trial results

Emergency Medicine

Clinical criteria can identify children with blunt head trauma who are unlikely to need CT scans

Outcomes/Effectiveness Research

Interventions for primary care providers improve management of diabetes
Interventions that improve asthma outcomes in clinical trials may not translate to the practice level
Even modest rates of physical activity can improve the functioning of middle-age adults with arthritis
Delaying surgery and watchful waiting for inguinal hernias is safe in men with minimal symptoms

Elderly/Long-term Care

Adverse incident reporting system improves documentation of falls in nursing homes to guide prevention of future falls

Primary Care Research

Clinicians may need to balance recommendations with patient preferences for anticoagulant medication to treat atrial fibrillation
Diagnosis of a seriously ill patient misses the link between a type of hepatitis and Hodgkin's disease
Primary care physician and health care system characteristics influence the likelihood of referral to specialists
Communication between primary care patients and their doctors does not necessarily result in shared decisionmaking
A practice-based research cohort of patients may have advantages over the traditional PBRN model

Health Care Costs and Financing

Medicaid spending on outpatient drugs more than doubled in recent years
Insuring adults in late middle age may reduce the costs of paying for health problems later

Public Health Preparedness

Better defining the role of public health nurses can improve disease surveillance necessary for bioterrorism preparedness

Agency News and Notes

New MEPS publication identifies trends in health care expenditures
New MEPS chartbook reports on expenditures for outpatient prescription drugs in 2003
New HCUP reports detail characteristics of hospitalizations in 2003


Study finds no clinically significant difference in effectiveness of drugs for managing anemia in patients undergoing cancer treatment
Research Briefs

Current as of June 2006
AHRQ Publication No. 06-0052

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