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The Office of Public Health Practice & Training

Student Public Health Practice Awardees

2020 Awards 

Excellence in U.S. Public Health Practice
 

Deepa JoshiDeepa Joshi
Project Title: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and Its Unintentional Barriers to Effective Child Death Review
Partner Organization: Health Resources and Services Administration

The death of a child is a tragic event in any community. Child death review (CDR) is when a multidisciplinary team of stakeholders come together, obtain records from the child’s past, and review the case. The primary goal of CDR is to provide recommendations to prevent future child deaths. Schools are an important public health partner for CDR because they add a broader perspective on the child’s life. However, obtaining school educational records and having schools participate in CDR can be challenging due to a federal privacy law titled the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

FERPA protects the release of students’ educational records and does not contain a public health exception for obtaining records outside an emergency. In this project, we reviewed the FERPA statute, data from the child fatality Case Reporting System and conducted key informant interviews with CDR coordinators, coroners, medical examiners and school officials, as well as explored local, state and federal interventions to address barriers for collaborating with schools and accessing school records.

This practicum was completed at the Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau. Deepa would like to thank her mentors, Sara Kinsman, MD, PhD and Diane Pilkey, RN, MPH, for their guidance; Abby Collier, MS and her team from the National Center for Fatality Review and Prevention for their insights; and also all of the child death review coordinators, medical examiners, coroners, and school representatives across the country that shared their experiences on this important subject.

Excellence in International Public Health Practice
 

Kaley Waring Kaley Marcis Waring
Project Title: Development of a Mental Health Screening Program for Migrant Workers in Singapore
Partner Organization: HealthServe

HealthServe provides medical and social services to thousands of low-wage migrant workers living in Singapore annually. Over the last year, the medical and casework teams mobilized to create a comprehensive mental health program which includes health promotion, screening, and treatment. For her MPH practicum, Kaley Waring compiled the necessary evidence to create an effective, ethical, and culturally appropriate screening program within the larger mental health initiative. Given the legal vulnerabilities of migrant workers, it is especially important that any mental health screening program is confidential, appropriate, and representative of community priorities. Kaley thus aided HealthServe in determining an evidence-based screening workflow and selecting a screening instrument. After pilot testing, it became clear to Kaley and her preceptors that even when adequately translated, common symptom questionnaires did not resonate with the community. Kaley used this information and data from the Johns Hopkins Center for Global Mental Health DIME Program to advocate for the creation of a tailored screening instrument, which would incorporate local idioms and conceptualizations of mental health. The development of this instrument is now underway in partnership with the National University of Singapore. Once the instrument is complete, it will augment the screening program and ensure patients are connected with the most appropriate level of care. Kaley also hopes the instrument can be used in public health research to characterize the burden of disease within the community and inform future migrant health policy.

Excellence in Baltimore Public Health Practice
 

Ainelen RadosevichAinelen Radosevich
Project Title: Develop the Latino Childhood Obesity Action Plan Framework
Partner Organization: Centro SOL

Baltimore has an increasing population from Latin America and they represent a minority facing major challenges. Health and access to health care is one of those challenges, particularly childhood obesity, a condition that over burdens and disproportionately affects Latino children, with rates up to 75% higher when compared to white children.

The US Preventive Service Task Force guidelines on childhood obesity treatment management call for intensive healthcare-based interventions, which are usually limited and unpractical for Latinos given health care access, financial and language barriers. In order to address the gap with the current recommended treatment and advance a patient/family centered weight management proposal that takes into account the ecological determinants of childhood obesity at the community level, the Center for Health and Opportunities for Latinos in Baltimore (Centro SOL), conducted the project ‘The Latino Childhood Healthy Weight Community Action Plan’. Its main proposal is that engaging families and community organizations through a community-based approach rather than healthcare-based approach will lead to effective and practical solutions.

Ainelen’s practicum involvement focused on the development of the action plan, the final product of the project, that aims to be a guide with recommendations that encompass the different levels of childhood obesity determinants and enhance actionable and replicable interventions for health systems, research institutions, community-based organizations and policymakers. The action plan exhibits the results of the project and the current evidence with the extra value that, while community centered, also combined health provision and treatment, key aspects for a successful weight management.

2019 AWARDS

Excellence in U.S. Public Health Practice

Excellence in International Public Health Practice

Excellence in Baltimore Public Health Practice

Click here to read more about each recipient's project.

2018 AWARDS

Excellence in U.S. Public Health Practice

Excellence in International Public Health Practice

Excellence in Baltimore Public Health Practice

Click here to read more about each recipient's project. 

For more information, please reach out to the Office of Public Health Practice and Training at practice@jhu.edu.