Hello and welcome back to the not yet Pulitzer nominated (it’ll happen) Community Health Roundup: your source for the latest in health news and information. This week I only have three articles, but they are so chockfull of information you will think I posted five. The articles this week cover the potential lack of primary care physicians in the coming years and the possible solution, why you should get up and move around throughout your day, and finally, how an app is improving women’s health in rural America.
Here’s a statistic: By 2025, America will need between 15,000 to 35,000 more primary care physicians. The problem through is there isn’t likely going to be 15,000 to 35,000 more PCPs before that date. So what are we going to do, give up trying to see the doctor and just remain sick forever? First off, no, don’t be so dramatic. The answer we seek may come in the form of eighteen letters strung together (with one space) to form two words: Nurse Practitioners. A new study out by the Journal of Health Economics found that when nurse practitioners gained independence to practice and prescribe medicine, health care access and outcomes improved for patients. Read more about the study here.
Very important question that may just help improve your health: Have you taken a walk today? Even just a two minute stroll around the garden, cubicles, neighborhood, or convenience store? Well if you haven’t, you should consider getting up RIGHT NOW (by right now I mean after you finish reading this post of course) because a new study found that being physically active drastically cuts down your risk of pre-mature death. And the best part? You don’t even have to take 2 hour walks or do 50 pushups, 35 sit ups, and 180 jumping jacks to get the benefit. It was found that even the little movements we do (walk to someone’s cubicle, walk to your car, walk around the grocery store, etc.) add up over the course of the day. So, read more about this at The New York Times and then get up, stand up, stand up for your health!
A new phone application (or app, as the kids call them) is providing a much needed service for women living in rural areas: access to birth control. The app is called NURX and it has become a huge hit in Texas where access to birth control is difficult for low-income women who do not live near a low-cost health clinic. Read more about this app here.
William Jacob Amadeus Pinnock is a Research Coordinator at OCHIN where he assists with the creation, execution, and dissemination of research projects. He graduated with an MS in Communication from Portland State University where he focused on health communication, rural mass media, and qualitative research methods. He has experience working in commercial health insurance, healthcare research, and radio broadcasting. In his spare time, he is an Adjunct Instructor at Portland State University helping students master the art of public speaking.