School of Public Health

Epi In the NewsSubscribe to Epi In the News

When older Americans with depression and dementia have access to firearms

Pacific Standard, Monday, April 15, 2019

When it comes to gun violence in America, one solution politicians and citizens often talk about is better mental-health screenings. But a new study suggests there's little being done to mitigate the risks of gun ownership and unsafe gun storage among older Americans who have guns at home and might be especially prone to hurting themselves or others. Lead author Erin Morgan, an Epidemiology PhD student, and others found that more than one in five seniors living with depression in a gun-owning household stored all of their firearms unlocked and loaded.

Air pollution linked to psychotic experiences among teenagers

Bustle, Wednesday, March 27, 2019

A first-of-its-kind study published in JAMA Psychiatry has now found a link between air pollution and psychotic experiences in teens. People living in cities are twice as likely to have psychotic experiences, the researchers said in the study, but there are a lot of factors in cities that could cause these experiences. Although this is the first study to connect air pollution to psychosis, it’s not the first to connect air pollution to mental health. University of Washington researchers, including the Department of Epidemiology's Dr.

Lack of diversity in genetic research could be detrimental to our health

PBS, Thursday, March 21, 2019

Despite people of European descent making up only 16% of the global population, up to 78% of data used in the study of human genetics comes from European descendants. This lack of global, generalized data creates an issue that could result in worsened global health. Dr. Malia Fullerton, a bioethicist and adjunct associate professor at the University of Washington Department of Epidemiology, is referenced in this article.

Study finds inequity in access to healthy foods among marginalized communities in Seattle area

ASPPH Connect, Thursday, March 21, 2019

Seattle neighborhoods that are lower income or that have more Black or Hispanic residents have fewer options for healthy foods, more fast food restaurants and longer travel times to stores that sell produce, according to a new study by the University of Washington School of Public Health. “Lower-income neighborhoods tend to have small stores and convenience stores, which on average offered fewer of the 21 healthy food items we looked for than say, a supermarket,” remarked lead author Dr. Jessica Jones-Smith, an Associate Professor of Epidemiology.

Philadelphia soda tax study corroborates aspects of findings from Seattle's

Route Fifty, Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Philadelphia’s soda tax has not cut down on the average consumption of sweetened beverages among adults or children overall, according to a study of the levy. Furthermore, the researchers noted that retailers in the city are passing the full cost of the tax onto consumers. This particular finding mirrors the results of a study released on Seattle’s sugary drink tax. “Although we weren’t surprised, it wasn’t guaranteed the tax would be passed on,” Jessica Jones-Smith, Associate Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Washington, noted at the time the study was released.

U.S. & Japanese militias convene in Tokyo for 65th Tri-Service Dental Symposium

US Army, Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Dental and orthodontic specialists from the U.S. Army and the Japan Self-Defense Forces recently met for a discussion on current pressing topics in their field and shared best practices during the 65th Tri-Service Dental Symposium. The opening keynote speaker was Dr. Philippe Hujoel, an epidemiologist and professor at UW. "If a patient is suffering from dental cavities a lot, it is key, from an evidence-based perspective, to first and foremost focus on sugar, because that's the prime reason that people get dental cavities," said Dr. Hujoel.

Maryland cannot look at gun control in isolation

Capital Gazette, Sunday, March 17, 2019

Gun violence is a leading cause of death in the United States and a serious public health threat. This article references a research project led by Dr. Ali Rowhani-Rahbar, an epidemiologist at UW, in which dynamics of shooting victims are assessed.

New research suggests that those who contribute most to pollution won't be affected by it

Bustle, Thursday, March 14, 2019

The United States has a major pollution inequity problem. New research suggests that a significant racial gap exists between who creates the most air pollution, and who suffers most from air pollution. The study reveals systemic racial inequities, says Anjum Hajat, professor of epidemiology at the University of Washington. Dr. Hajat proposes the question, “If you're contributing less to the problem, why do you have to suffer more from it?"

Racial gap found between those who pollute air and who breathes it

NPR, Monday, March 11, 2019

Pollution, much like wealth, is not distributed equally in the United States. A new study has found that air pollution is disproportionately caused by white Americans' consumption of goods and services, but disproportionately inhaled by black and Hispanic Americans. "This paper is exciting and really quite novel," says Anjum Hajat, an epidemiologist at the University of Washington. "Inequity in exposure to air pollution is well documented, but this study brings in the consumption angle," Hajat continues.

UW research yields findings that Seattle's minimum wage did not boost supermarket prices

ASPPH, Thursday, March 7, 2019

Seattle's minimum wage increases did not boost supermarket prices in the city in the two years after the policy began, according to new research out of the University of Washington. James Buszkiewicz, doctoral candidate with UW's Department of Epidemiology, acted as lead author of the study.