Volume 6 (2013)
Cornish & Troutman: What Works in Sexual Health Promotion? An Analysis of Sex Education in Germany and the United States
Authors: Adrianna Cornish and Michele Troutman
Abstract: Sexual health education and promotion require a holistic approach incorporating media, familial, and governmental efforts. Promotion has proven to be a conscious effort that aims to improve health behavior and educate the public to promote informed decision-making. The two countries that offer the best comparison are the United States and Germany. Germany’s media mirror the liberal views of the population whereas the U.S. has a “cultivated effect,” emphasizing an unrealistic view of sex. Print materials and television efforts both have been utilized in the two countries to supplement health education to the masses. Germany has designated $5 million to sex education over the airways and has allocated a three-month timeframe to redistribute updated sexual health promotional material. The United States’ media approach is less consistent with its educational resources, with a large percentage of Internet- based information, which is often inaccurate. Another differing aspect is the array of policies that provide the foundation for sexual health promotion. Whereas German national policy lends support to prevention and developmental phases, the United States divides its financial support among several programs. Their commonality lies in that both countries developing national standards for topics covered. In recognizing the limitations of time and money, we developed recommendations that enforce a highly regulated implementation system that increases the quality of health education promotion.
McDermott: Interdisciplinary Teaching and Research in the Environmental and Health Sciences: A Dialogue for the 21st Century
Author: Robert J. McDermott
Abstract: The Sixth Winter Meeting of the International Consortium for Interdisciplinary Education about Health and the Environment was held under the auspices of the University of Cologne’s Institute of Biology and its Didactics December 8-9, 2012 in Cologne, Germany. Several presentations with follow-up discussions ensued. This paper reiterates the purpose and philosophy of the Consortium and the need for interdisciplinary thinking about the linkages between the environment and health and the persons who study these entities.
Nickelson: Childhood Obesity: A Social Ecological Approach to Understanding Determinants
Author: Jen Nickelson
Abstract: The prevalence of obesity among youth and adults in the United States has become a major public health concern, but is a problem on a global scale as well. Whereas obesity is most notably associated with physical health problems, the psychosocial problems associated with this condition cannot be ignored. Because of the great physical, psychosocial, and economic consequences of obesity, there is a need to identify and address the causes of this disorder. This paper describes potential determinants of childhood obesity using individual, interpersonal, institutional, and community level factors consistent with a social ecological framework.
Nothwehr: Childhood Obesity in the United States and Germany: Trends, Risk Factors, and Initiatives
Author: Ann Nothwehr
Abstract: Obesity in childhood has become a public health problem in the United States and elsewhere. The prevalence of childhood obesity in Germany has lagged somewhat behind that of the U.S. but still threatens health at numerous levels. This paper examines initiatives in both countries and reports on challenges and progress in altering the course of this epidemic.
Ritzel et al.: Water, Heat, Drought, and Public Health in the Midwest USA - 2012
Authors: Dale O. Ritzel, Yuba Gautam, Maria Alexandrova, and Dhitinut Ratnapradipa
Abstract: The year 2012 was the hottest year on record in the United States and the second worst "extreme" weather year with respect to severe weather. Each of the contiguous 48 states had above-average temperatures, with 19 setting record high temperatures. This paper reviews these conditions and effects they had on the environment and people's health.
Prax: Depression and Anxiety in Transnational Migrants - A Public Health Opportunity
Author: Chelsea Rae Prax
Abstract: Transnational migrants often enter Germany and the United States to work. They revitalize aging populations and challenge cultural expectations. Mental illness plagues migrants, specifically anxiety and depression. Among all of Germany’s migrants, Turks experience the highest degree of anxiety and depression symptoms, and demonstrate a higher likelihood for developing depression. Across the Atlantic, despite the “Hispanic Paradox,” some studies declare that a majority of all Mexican migrants to the U.S. experience anxiety and depression. Researchers cite several possible causes for increased risk, including disrupted social support, poverty, discrimination, poor health care access, inadequate language skills, personality traits and cultural clashes. Myriad explanatory frameworks motivate patchwork responses. Both Germany and the U.S. marginalize and exclude, expel and segregate their migrants. This paper argues for integrative policy as a clear solution for both nations. While meeting human rights and public health imperatives, integration also reduces the negative impact of acculturation and ultimately lays a foundation for healthy social evolution.
Ruhe: Making a Child's Environment Safer
Author: Inke Ruhe
Abstract: Starting with the first year of life, unintentional injuries are the biggest health risk for children. About 1.7 million children per year suffer injuries so severe that they need medical treatment. Although these numbers point out the political relevance of unintentional injuries, there is insufficient awareness of the problem among the public. Furthermore, the problem does not occupy a prominent space on the national health agenda. For example, over the past decades effective progress has been made in other public safety initiatives, such as preventing traffic injuries. However, injuries occurring at home and during leisure time have received little attention even though the injury rates are higher. This is especially striking because 60% of all injuries involving children could be prevented. The Federal Association SAFE KIDS Germany is the national umbrella organization for the prevention of childhood injuries at home and in the leisure time. The Federal Association initiates, coordinates and supports preventive activities.
Schlüter: An Action-oriented Way to Learn Classical Genetics – Part I
Author: Kirsten Schlüter
Abstract: The model described enables learners to access knowledge in classical genetics in an action-oriented way. Several key constructs are covered by this model. The structure of a set of chromosomes, the simplified process of the meiosis, gender inheritance as wells as the recombination diversity of chromosomes during “offspring procreation” are highlighted in this paper.
Schlüter: An Action-oriented Way to Learn Classical Genetics – Part II
Author: Kirsten Schlüter
Abstract: This article describes how to enable an action-oriented introduction of learners to classical genetics using the cotton reel model. In concrete terms, it deals with getting to know and understand Mendel‘s laws as well as the particularities of sex-linked inheritance.