Category Archives: Course content

C P & R Prompt 1

The area of concern that I chose was the standards for school food. When I was a freshman in high school in 2012, the lunch usually consisted of a slice of pizza that was so greasy it needed to be dabbed with a napkin before consumption, French fries with extra salt, and a drink called “Ice” that had no calories, and therefore contained aspartame. Then, in sophomore year, the slices of pizza were cut in half, the French fries were unsalted, and fruit cups and low-fat milk were offered as alternative options. As my dream job is to help design meal plans for public schools, this article was of great interest to me. As I am no longer attending a public school, I feel protected, however, for those still in grade school, I do not feel the same. Michelle Obama did make some great changes to the public-school systems food including many dietary restrictions, correct portion sizing, and raising the spending limit of each child by 6 cents. However, these changes are too little too late for America. I do know that schools are now required to have cut down on saturated and trans fats and sodium consumption. In the long term this will help, however, it is not a large enough change to bring about substantial impact. I do not know if this change will impact school aged children to the degree that Michelle Obama was planning on. The agency that would be most relevant to learn something about is any of the fifteen nutrition assistance programs put in place by the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Services including the National School Lunch and School Breakfast programs, the Summer Food Service Program, and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, etc. What is most important to share with consumers about this issue is that there are things being done to help combat childhood obesity and disease. However, it is also important to note that the last changes made to the public-school food system were in 2012 and are now half a decade outdated. Consumers are protected in the way that their children are given healthier choices for lunch, however, they are not protected in the fact that these are merely choices. If you were to ask a 12-year-old if they wanted to have pizza and French fries for lunch or a salad and fruit cup, they would choose the pizza almost every time.

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CP & R Prompt One

After reviewing a few articles under the consumer protection & regulations page, I decided to talk about the recall on Toyota vehicles that needed replaced parts for their brakes on certain vehicles. As a consumer, I do feel safe just because many car industries do recall their vehicles to have certain areas fixed on them, and fix them with no charge for you. I did not know that Toyota does not need an approval from the NHTSA to undergo such actions to their vehicles. The NHTSA would be an agency I would learn more about, just because I would like to know more about their involvement in the vehicle industry. This is something I would make all consumers aware of, which can help make certain decisions if needed.

 

Healthcare Prompts:

Prompt 1

I believe the best aspect of the current ACA is the amount of access and coverage that has been added and improved for all Americans, but women and children specifically. With the current ACA, women now have access to all kinds of health and maternity health services that can severely impact the quality of their lives and their families lives in very positive ways. Services offered to women currently no matter their SES, include Family planning, Preventative services (Birth control, Cancer Screenings), Maternity Services, Prescription drug coverage gaps and more. Children can now stay on their parent’s medical coverage until age 26. Through Medicaid, young, uninsured individuals and families can access services that are targeted to improve health and well-being. I believe the best opportunity for improving the way the law works for most ordinary consumers is to make Americans more aware of their options. It is possible that most uninsured individuals are unaware of options and services available to them. If Americans knew what they qualified for they may save themselves a lot of stress and worry. I believe the next step is to improve the number of qualified applicants utilizing these services while they last. They goal is to make sure all Americans have the right to lead happy. healthy lives.

I believe the best thing for a friend to know is that they should always apply for Medicaid or an insurance coverage plan even if THINK they don’t qualify. According to Healthcare.gov, Some states have expanded their Medicaid programs to cover everyone with incomes below a certain level. Other states have yet to do this. So, if you qualify for Medicaid all depends on if your state has expended their program. You can qualify for Medicaid based on factors such as, your income, household size, disability, family status, and other factors. Every state has different eligibility standards. If the state you live in has not expanded their Medicaid, and you believe your income qualifies for Medicaid, make sure to still apply for medical coverage because you may qualify for another coverage plan. If your state did not expand Medicaid and you do not qualify for any standards, you can receive care at a nearby community health center. The health care law has expanded funding to community health centers, which provide primary care for millions of Americans. Long story short, it is a great idea to always apply for medical coverage no matter your status. It is possible you qualify for more than you think! (Medicaid & Chip, Healthcare.gov). If we were to lose Medicaid expansion thousands of individuals and families would lose their coverage and any chance at decent health care (50- State Look at Medicaid Expansion, 2017).

Prompt 2

Before now I had no idea what the CBO was. I know now that it stands for the Congressional Budget Office. I also know now that this senate bill will cause many deserving individuals and families to become uninsured and the ability to obtain health coverage will become much more difficult. The view of healthcare will be less of a right. As an aspiring Public Health professional, the future I see is one where everyone can find access to the services and healthcare they need to ensure healthy bodies and well-beings. I see health being a right opposed to a luxury. With a bill like this, more people will feel the bad than the few that will feel the good. We can hope that those who are still uninsured take advantage of all that we currently have before we see things change drastically.

A 50-State Look at Medicaid Expansion. (2017, July). Retrieved October 09, 2017, from http://familiesusa.org/product/50-state-look-medicaid-expansion

How to Qualify For Medicaid and CHIP Health Care Coverage. (n.d.). Retrieved October 09, 2017, from https://www.healthcare.gov/medicaid-chip/getting-medicaid-chip

https://www.healthcare.gov/medicaid-chip/getting-medicaid-chip/

http://www.nationalpartnership.org/research-library/health-care/summary-of-key-provisions.pdf

So – you’re reading and writing, right?

I’m seeing some good posts, and planning to be able to take some extended time to grade them very soon!

If you’re writing, it means you’ve found the post prompts (under the Assignments page, labeled 7 Course Assignments in the menu, with a page for each week’s topical prompts. Also see them at the Estimated Schedule page.)

If you’re reading, and using slides, it means you’ve found the Content Pages – (labeled 6 Content Pages – and with specific content pages organized under that page) and the Course Slides page (labeled 4 Course Slides).

If you haven’t been using those pages, how about starting tonight!

If you’re truly stuck, still, it’s ok. It IS online, after all, and a new modality for many of you. CALL me. Or EMAIL me. Check the syllabus (here) OR my emails to YOU for that info!

Thinking and Discourse Prompt 1

These two questions are essentially asking the same thing; however, they are obviously asking it in different ways. The first question can be interpreted to mean: would you agree that every American deserves health care? However, it fails to mention the costs that may come to the individual if favoring that question. The second question, however, is clearer and goes into more detail to explain the personal costs that will happen if Medicare is expanded to cover everyone, including those who cannot afford it. That is the reason that the percentages of “Favor strongly or favor somewhat” decreased by 16%. When given more information, the consumer was able to make a more informed decision.

This shows that language and wording are very important in everyday life. In consumer health, it is important to be as clear as possible, so that the consumer knows exactly what is going on and what they are getting. For instance, when buying foods, if you look at the label, all of the nutrition facts are listed, however, many people do not understand what they mean. At the very bottom of most nutrition labels the vitamin and mineral percentages are listed. Generally, it will say something along the lines of “Vitamin A 5%” and so on and so forth with different vitamins and minerals. When looking at this with little to no knowledge of how to read a food label, the consumer might think that 5% of vitamin A is low. However, if the percentage of a vitamin is above 20% on a nutrition label, that is considered high. But as many people are not aware of this, they interpret it differently. Not only do consumers need all of the information, but they also need to know how to interpret that information in order to make a fully informed decision.

Thinking and Discourse Prompt 2

The piece of Social Justice vs. Market Justice explores how these two concepts influence ideas which then influence language and actions. As stated in the article, Market Justice has become somewhat of a “default” for the American society. Market Justice is the belief that people earn what they have received in life; for example, if someone were to choose to not attend college, they deserve a lower paying job as they did not put in the effort to obtain a higher paying job. Therefore, those who believe in Market Justice believe that what happens in a person’s life is directly related to the choices that that person has made. Social Justice is the belief that not everyone had the same starting point when they were born, therefore, basic benefits should be assured to level the playing field. For example, if someone could not afford to attend college due to their socioeconomic status growing up, why should they have to live with a lower paying job? They were never even given a chance to go to college without falling in major debt. Social Justice would put community wellbeing before personal wellbeing to bridge the ever-growing economic gap.

A large health area of concern for me is nutrition. I am fully aware that not everyone is able to afford healthy food all the time, nor does everyone have the time to make healthy food. For instance, a prepackaged salad at Fred Meyer costs $3 to $4 for one serving, whereas a frozen pizza costs about the same, but contains two to four servings. In Market Justice, it would be argued that those who choose the salad are opting for a healthy lifestyle and therefore are choosing the health benefits that come along with that. If someone is unable to afford the salad due to their economic status, that is also on them as they have chosen their career and how much they are paid. Those who are choosing the pizza are opting for an unhealthy lifestyle and deserve the health problems that come with that.

In contrast, in Social Justice, it is recognized that for some, this is not a choice. For some, it is not possible to spend $4 on one person’s meal, so they must choose the pizza for economic reasons only. If this leads to health problems, then so be it, there was no choice to be made. Social Justice would argue that economic status cannot always be determined by an individual. Based on the earnings of the parents, some people may have to start working at an early age to help their parents afford basic necessities, therefore they may neglect school, and may not be able to attend college. This can be traced back several generations. In 1865 to 1867 when slavery was abolished, former slaves were not given much, if anything, to live on, so they had to work and were only able to afford basic necessities, therefore, their children had to work and were also poor, and so on and so forth. So, according to Social Justice, why should people now have to live with the choices, or forced choices, of their ancestors?

I will be able to use this knowledge of Market Justice vs. Social Justice in my future career as a Registered Dietitian from an economic standpoint. If a client is unable to afford healthier foods, I should be able to make suggestions of foods that are commonly carried at a food bank, and point them in that direction so that they are able to make healthier choices without too much strain on their income. In nutrition it is very easy to get in the mindset of “you have chosen to eat poorly and now you have poor health.” However, it must be recognized that health is a combination of factors, one of which being genetics. So again, why should someone have to live with the choice, or forced choices, or their ancestors? In Market Justice terms, the answer would be that it is the individual’s problem to fix any health issues afflicting them; in Social Justice terms, the individual does not always get the opportunity to fix their health issues, but they should be given one.

Thinking and Discourse Prompts

The difference between question one and question two is question two is more specific in what it is asking. Also, its clearer for the consumer because the language being used helps the consumer understand the question better. These questions show me that the importance of language in consumer health is very important. It can affect the results at the end and helps consumers correctly answer what they actually believe in.

 

The Social Justice vs. Market Justice helps me understand that market justice is more selfish, in a sense because it doesn’t see or hear or care at all. Whereas social justice is more for the well-being of a community than an individual. I could use this understanding to help encourage better consumer decisions in the health area of having free medical or single-payer medical for all. Market justice seems really negative about the way people live. It basically means that if you’re poor or having any sort of difficulties, it is because that person has placed themselves in that situation and therefore have no one to blame except themselves. I don’t agree with this way of thinking. Some people, I’m sure do place themselves in difficult situations however a lot of people can be born into a working-class family or just may not have the same advantages as other people do; and that’s not their fault. According to social justice, if we would have free medical for all people, that would take care of communities of people and create a better functioning society as well as equal.

 

The slide set that is found in the overview slides, the slideshow “The New Consumer Health-An Overview” provides good concepts. A concept that is important for me is what consumer health is. It connects to me by having the awareness of facts as a consumer. For example, reading about the market justice benefits companies when it comes to less regulations. It connects to me as a consumer because if I go to a clinic or hospital I would expect them to be able to give me facts and not deceive me or give me misinformation or anything of the sort (Slide 2).

 

Another concept is the example of a quote that says, “Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.” This can be seen in two different perspectives. In a good way, we see that small acts multiplied can better the world in several ways. In a bad way, it can make the world cruel place. This connects with me because when we look at market justice it basically means that every is on their own or that everyone has their own agenda. However, if we look at it in a social justice perspective, we see that little acts can transform a community. This connects to me as consumer because people are able to support and donate good causes to help others in the states or well as give aid internationally (Slide 11).

 

The last concept is the discussion of what hegemonic is. It connects with something I’ve read in class because it says that hegemonic is when you buy something that is not good for you (one of four definitions). We can see this when we eat junk food or fast food. We know its’ not good for us, yet because it is cheap or simply because we like it we eat it.  As a consumer, it connects to me because I love to eat candy. I know it’s bad for me, but I have a sweet tooth and I consumer it a lot (Slide 16).

Intro Post

Hello! My name is Erika B. (I just now figured out how to post on here.. hence all of the editing..) I am a transfer student from Wenatchee Valley College starting on my Junior year and am planning to major in Public Health. This is my first quarter taking public health courses which means I am slightly unfamiliar with the concepts but I can’t wait to learn! Ideally, I would like to receive my masters in Epidemiology.

I would consider my current consumer health status ‘okay’ or healthy. I don’t exercise as much as I would like to or use to, and I do try to eat healthy. I’ve taken nutrition courses that have helped in getting a general understanding of portion control and what portions of food I should be eating a day rather than just eating the first thing I see when I’m hungry. I walk to school everyday and take the stairs instead of the elevator. I am definitely a homebody, and this is my first time away from home so I am still adjusting to the new environment and being away from my parents for the first time.

A couple of values that I hold are: effort and respect. The outcome is solely reliant on the amount of effort you put into something, whether it’s doing your job right for the hundredth time or studying for an exam in a new subject. It is also important to always respect others opinions and views even when you disagree.

One right we have as American’s is the right to vote. Another important one is freedom of speech. We are free to post whatever we’d like on social media. One right that I believe we should have is equal treatment between the different social classes. Another right I believe we should have is tax-free women’s hygiene products.

Staying on Track – Resources to help you!

Hi everyone –

I have just completed a page, Estimated Schedule and Staying on Track, that should clarify all the deadlines and help you indeed stay on track with PUBH 209 work.

Please review it carefully, and note that the clickable parts take you out to post prompt options, the Guidelines and Deadlines page, etc.

Let me know if you have questions and I do look forward to seeing your ongoing development as an engaged, informed, and empowered consumer!  –Dr. P

Help from Dr. P – and a great end to our first week!

Hi everyone –

Let me just say “Woo hoo!” because I’ve had some great chats with several of you and I see that folks are really getting started.

Again, reading my “Guide” WILL help you. I promise. Otherwise, once you’ve accepted the invitation and logged in, just click on the pencil “Write” icon at the top right of your screen, choose Consuming Health Matters at the LEFT, and start your post!

If you’re mostly concerned about getting started with readings and assignments, no worries! Note that (as explained in the syllabus) there are two deadlines, discussed below.

One deadline is “Perfect World” on Fridays, every week at 10pm. The second is “Last Chance” on Sundays at 11:59pm. Please try to have your Intro post up for THIS week’s Last Chance deadline, if not today’s Perfect World deadline, ok? Once you get the hang of things, you’ll be posting like a pro. And remember – choose “Intros” as your category, and be sure to add your username as a tag.

You can have the course blog open in one window, and be writing your post in another window. See what I mean? Visit the front page of the blog, here, and then open it again if you want to and then click the pencil/”Write” icon.

This “1-2-3” list should help you get started and feel relieved. Keep reading…

  1. Visit the intro post instructions here: 1 Getting Started in PUBH 209 work
  2. Then go out and read the first content page, A Page to Start with: Thinking and Discourse Matters, here. (Be sure to click the clickable items in it so that you are ACTUALLY reading this important piece of introductory course content and understanding my “basics” of consumer health!)
  3. Next go view the Overview slides here: 4 Course Slides
  4. Now you’re getting ready to write your first “real” post, the Thinking and Discourse post, which you will find here. Remember, you are responsible for ONE prompt each week. The Thinking and Discourse prompt is due NEXT Friday (PW deadline) or NEXT Sunday (LC deadline). PLEASE NOTE: You’ll find three Thinking and Discourse prompts, meaning you have options. It also means that, if you want to, you can start on Extra Credit/Extra Learning (explained in the syllabus) this very week!

Ok, get started. We’ll talk soon, especially if you’re still SO lost that you can’t log in and start writing. –Dr. P