Health literacy — the ability of people to obtain, process and understand basic health information and health care delivery systems to make appropriate decisions about their well-being — directly affects every person’s ability to live a healthy, productive life. Yet according to a report from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), only 12 percent of American adults possess “proficient” health literacy, and 14 percent exhibit “below basic” health literacy.
Popular perception holds that individual choices dictate a person’s weight: Those who eat well and prioritize fitness are healthy, and those who do not, are not. However, developing research on childhood obesity suggests that obesity levels are not caused by lifestyle choices — they are intimately linked to genetics and poverty rates.
Dean of the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work, Marilyn Flynn, recently published a letter addressing the presidential election results and how important the social work community will be during the next four years.
As coverage of the Zika virus continues to dominate global news cycles, officials are worried that panic is spreading faster than the virus itself. Consequently, top-tier journalists and public health officials are analyzing media responses to the 2014 Ebola scare to develop lessons learned, or at least pinpoint where practices went drastically wrong.
The United States is facing serious mental health challenges. And if resources are not sufficient for the general population, how do minority populations and other underserved groups and communities address emotional and behavioral health needs? A deep dive into the driving forces behind mental health care disparities among minority populations reveals that minorities experience more barriers to accessing quality care.
The 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro raised a lot of questions about public health, including some we may not have expected. Are healthier nations more successful in international athletic competitions? What does it really mean to be healthy? The Human Development Index gives us one possible answer.