Public health officials encourage seniors to walk the mall

Shopping malls’ level surfaces, good lighting, climate control, and access to water fountains and rest rooms make them ideal for seniors who want to exercise by walking, says nursing school professor Basia Belza, who co-wrote a CDC resource guide on mall walking. Mall-walking clubs have been around for decades but are usually not well publicized. Some are partnerships of the mall, health care providers, hospitals and community groups, and may offer health screenings and nutrition talks. Kaiser Health News (4/20)

Aggressive care after mini-stroke cuts secondary stroke risk, study finds

Aggressive treatment following a transient ischemic attack can substantially cut the likelihood of another stroke or death, researchers report in the New England Journal of Medicine. Patients who received the most aggressive care available after a mini-stroke had only a 3.7% risk of recurrent stroke or cardiovascular event 90 days after the treatment, well below the expected 12% to 20% risk seen in previous studies. The international study analyzed data from 4,789 patients from 61 sites. United Press International (4/21)

Study: EHR use tied to success in population health management processes

Patient-centered medical homes and accountable care organizations that used EHRs in 2012 were 15% more likely to engage in population health management processes and 25% more likely to have effective communications with patients than non-users, according to ONC and CDC researchers. The findings in the American Journal of Managed Care also showed physicians who joined an ACO or adopted a patient-centered medical home model were more likely to participate in EHR-driven patient management activities. Health IT Analytics (4/18)

Managing chronic conditions is difficult for patients, physicians

People with multiple chronic conditions often have trouble managing their health care, but the HHS last month released a free training curriculum to help practitioners with such patients. Dr. John Piette at the University of Michigan’s Center for Managing Chronic Disease said medication conflicts and physicians not talking with each other are big problems. He said electronic health records can help track patient care, and patients can write down information during physician visits and encourage their doctors to communicate about their care. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (8/10)

CDC: 197 of 4,534 travelers tested positive for Zika

The CDC reported on Friday that 197 travelers out of 4,534 who were tested were found to be positive for the Zika virus. The travelers screened from January to March had been to areas where the virus was spreading, and 3,335 of them were pregnant women, of whom 28 were positive for Zika. Beginning in February, the CDC called for testing of asymptomatic pregnant women who travel from areas where Zika is endemic. CNN (4/16)