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Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Air Quality Assessment of Volatile Organic Compounds Near a Concrete Block Plant and Traffic in Bladensburg, Maryland
A concrete block plant located in Bladensburg, Maryland, wants to expand to include a concrete batching plant on the same property. This expansion could further degrade air quality and impact the health of vulnerable residents. The purpose of this study is to provide information on volatile organic compounds (VOCs) levels near residential areas close to commuter traffic and industrial activity associated with the concrete plant. Air quality monitoring was conducted in the community at five sites: (1) Kingdom Missionary Baptist Church, (2) Bladensburg Waterfront Park, (3) Confluence area, (4) Bladensburg Elementary School, and (5) Hillcrest Apartment Complex by using the Atmotube, a wearable, real-time sensor that can measure total VOCs. Sampling was conducted in 30-minute periods to capture morning onpeak, afternoon off-peak, and evening on-peak periods. Traffic counts were also conducted at the sites mentioned earlier to evaluate vehicular activity. Average 30-minute values for cars ranged from 8.33 to 1295.33 cars, whereas mean truck values ranged from 0.00 to 137.67 trucks across all sites. The highest average car count of 1295.33 cars was observed at the confluence area. Mean VOCs concentrations ranged from 0.11 to 0.54 ppm across the monitoring locations. The maximum average VOCs level of 0.54 ppm was observed at Kingdom Missionary Baptist Church on Saturday. Also, the mean VOCs levels observed at the church (0.54 and 0.31 ppm) were higher compared with other locations on Saturday. Our results revealed spatial variations of VOCs levels across all locations. There were higher total VOCs levels at the church, which is the closest location to the concrete block plant.
Located in MPRC People / Sacoby Wilson, Ph.D., M.S. / Sacoby Wilson Publications
Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Air Quality Assessment of Volatile Organic Compounds Near a Concrete Block Plant and Traffic in Bladensburg, Maryland
A concrete block plant located in Bladensburg, Maryland, wants to expand to include a concrete batching plant on the same property. This expansion could further degrade air quality and impact the health of vulnerable residents. The purpose of this study is to provide information on volatile organic compounds (VOCs) levels near residential areas close to commuter traffic and industrial activity associated with the concrete plant. Air quality monitoring was conducted in the community at five sites: (1) Kingdom Missionary Baptist Church, (2) Bladensburg Waterfront Park, (3) Confluence area, (4) Bladensburg Elementary School, and (5) Hillcrest Apartment Complex by using the Atmotube, a wearable, real-time sensor that can measure total VOCs. Sampling was conducted in 30-minute periods to capture morning onpeak, afternoon off-peak, and evening on-peak periods. Traffic counts were also conducted at the sites mentioned earlier to evaluate vehicular activity. Average 30-minute values for cars ranged from 8.33 to 1295.33 cars, whereas mean truck values ranged from 0.00 to 137.67 trucks across all sites. The highest average car count of 1295.33 cars was observed at the confluence area. Mean VOCs concentrations ranged from 0.11 to 0.54 ppm across the monitoring locations. The maximum average VOCs level of 0.54 ppm was observed at Kingdom Missionary Baptist Church on Saturday. Also, the mean VOCs levels observed at the church (0.54 and 0.31 ppm) were higher compared with other locations on Saturday. Our results revealed spatial variations of VOCs levels across all locations. There were higher total VOCs levels at the church, which is the closest location to the concrete block plant.
Located in MPRC People / Devon Payne-Sturges, Dr.P.H. / Devon Payne-Sturges Publications
Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Black–White Disparities in Preterm Birth: Geographic, Social, and Health Determinants
Reducing racial/ethnic disparities in preterm birth is a priority for U.S. public health programs. The study objective was to quantify the relative contribution of geographic, sociodemographic, and health determinants to the black, non-Hispanic and white, non-Hispanic preterm birth disparity. Methods Cross-sectional 2016 U.S. birth certificate data (analyzed in 2018–2019) were used. Black–white differences in covariate distributions and preterm birth and very preterm birth rates were examined. Decomposition methods for nonlinear outcomes based on logistic regression were used to quantify the extent to which black–white differences in covariates contributed to preterm birth and very preterm birth disparities. Results Covariate differences between black and white women were found within each category of geographic, sociodemographic, and health characteristics. However, not all covariates contributed substantially to the disparity. Close to 38% of the preterm birth and 31% of the very preterm birth disparity could be explained by black–white covariate differences. The largest contributors to the disparity included maternal education (preterm birth, 11.3%; very preterm birth, 9.0%), marital status/paternity acknowledgment (preterm birth, 13.8%; very preterm birth, 14.7%), source of payment for delivery (preterm birth, 6.2%; very preterm birth, 3.2%), and hypertension in pregnancy (preterm birth, 9.9%; very preterm birth, 8.3%). Interpregnancy interval contributed a more sizable contribution to the disparity (preterm birth, 6.2%, very preterm birth, 6.0%) in sensitivity analyses restricted to all nonfirstborn births. Conclusions These findings demonstrate that the known portion of the disparity in preterm birth is driven by sociodemographic and preconception/prenatal health factors. Public health programs to enhance social support and preconception care, specifically focused on hypertension, may provide an efficient approach for reducing the racial gap in preterm birth.
Located in MPRC People / Marie Thoma, Ph.D. / Marie Thoma Publications
Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Sex-Specific Associations Between Area-Level Poverty and Cardiometabolic Dysfunction Among US Adolescents
Objective: Cardiometabolic disease is the leading cause of mortality in the United States. Cardiometabolic function during adolescence predicts future cardiometabolic disease, yet few studies have examined early determinants of cardiometabolic function. Informed by evidence of sex differences in the prevalence and severity of cardiometabolic disorders and evidence of sexual dimorphism in the stress response, we examined sex differences in the association between living in poverty and cardiometabolic function during adolescence, a precursor of later cardiometabolic disorders. Methods: We linked data from 10 415 adolescents aged 12-19 in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1999-2012) with US Census–tract data on area-level poverty (percentage of the population living in poverty, grouped into quartiles). We parameterized cardiometabolic dysfunction by summing the z scores of 6 cardiometabolic biomarkers, grouped into quintiles. Hierarchical ordinal models estimated associations. Results: Compared with residents in low-poverty areas, residents in high-poverty areas had elevated odds of cardiometabolic dysfunction (highest quartile of poverty odds ratio [OR] = 1.27; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.08-1.50). This association was more pronounced among boys than girls (highest quartile of poverty for boys: OR = 1.36; 95% CI, 1.10-1.70; highest quartile of poverty for girls: OR = 1.17; 95% CI, 0.94-1.47). Conclusion: Our study supports the existence of sex-specific associations. These results highlight the potential for community-based programs, such as housing assistance, to improve population health.
Located in MPRC People / Edmond Shenassa, Ph.D. / Edmond Shenassa Publications
Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Inequalities in the distribution of childhood adversity from birth to 11 years
Objective Exposure to early adversity carries long term harmful consequences for children's health and development. This study aims to 1) estimate the prevalence of childhood adversity for Australian children from infancy to 10-11 years, and 2) document inequalities in the distribution of adversity according to socioeconomic position (SEP), Indigenous status, and ethnicity. Methods Adversity was assessed every two years from 0-1 to 10-11 years in the nationally representative birth cohort of the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (N=5,107). Adversity included legal problems; family violence; household mental illness; household substance abuse; harsh parenting; parental separation/divorce; unsafe neighborhood; family member death; and bullying (from 4-5 years). Adversities were examined individually and summed for a measure of multiple adversity (2+ adverse experiences). Results By 10-11 years, 52.8% (95% CI 51.0-54.7) of children had been exposed to two or more adversities. When combined with low SEP, children from ethnic minority and from Indigenous backgrounds had four to eight times the odds of exposure to two or more adversities than children from higher SEP Anglo-Euro backgrounds, respectively (OR 4.3, 95% CI 2.8-6.6 and OR 8.1, 95% CI 4.4-14.8). Ethnic minority and Indigenous children from higher SEP backgrounds had increased odds of exposure to multiple adversity than similarly advantaged Anglo-Euro children (OR 1.8, 95% CI 1.4-2.3 and OR 2.3, 95% CI 1.3-4.3, respectively). Conclusions Addressing early adversity is a significant opportunity to promote health over the life course, and reduce health inequalities experienced by marginalized groups of children.
Located in MPRC People / Natalie Slopen, Sc.D. / Natalie Slopen Publications
Article ReferenceAssessing the Role of Health Behaviors, Socioeconomic Status, and Cumulative Stress for Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Obesity
Objective: This study aimed to examine the explanatory role of health behaviors, socioeconomic position (SEP), and psychosocial stressors on racial/ethnic obesity disparities in a multiethnic and multiracial sample of adults. Methods: Using data from the Chicago Community Adult Health Study (2001-2003), Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition analysis was conducted to quantify the extent to which health behaviors (fruit and vegetable consumption and physical activity), SEP, and cumulative stressors (e.g., perceived discrimination, financial strain) each explained differences in obesity prevalence in Black, US-born Hispanic, and non-US-born Hispanic compared with non-Hispanic White participants. Results: SEP and health behaviors did not explain obesity differences between racial/ethnic minorities and White individuals. Having high levels of stress in four or more domains explained 4.46% of the differences between Black and White individuals, whereas having high levels of stress in three domains significantly explained 14.13% of differences between US-born Hispanic and White. Together, the predictors explained less than 20% of differences between any racial/ethnic minority group and White individuals. Conclusions: Exposure to stressors may play a role in obesity disparities, particularly among Black and US-born Hispanic individuals. Other obesity-related risk factors need to be examined to understand the underlying mechanisms explaining obesity disparities.
Located in MPRC People / Natalie Slopen, Sc.D. / Natalie Slopen Publications
Amir Sapkota, Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health, School of Public Health
Climate Change and Impaired Population Health – Perspectives From Countries on Opposite Ends of the Economic Spectrum
Located in Coming Up
Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Racial discrimination and telomere shortening among African Americans: The Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Study
OBJECTIVE: Telomeres are protective sequences of DNA capping the ends of chromosomes that shorten over time. Leukocyte telomere length (LTL) is posited to reflect the replicative history of cells and general systemic aging of the organism. Chronic stress exposure leads to accelerated LTL shortening, which has been linked to increased susceptibility to and faster progression of aging-related diseases. This study examined longitudinal associations between LTL and experiences of racial discrimination, a qualitatively unique source of minority psychosocial stress, among African Americans. METHOD: Data are from 391 African Americans in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Telomere Ancillary Study. We examined the number of domains in which racial discrimination was experienced in relation to LTL collected in Years 15 and 25 (Y15: 2000/2001; Y25: 2010/2011). Multivariable linear regression examined if racial discrimination was associated with LTL. Latent change score analysis (LCS) examined changes in racial discrimination and LTL in relation to one another. RESULTS: Controlling for racial discrimination at Y15, multivariable linear regression analyses indicated that racial discrimination at Y25 was significantly associated with LTL at Y25. This relationship remained robust after adjusting for LTL at Y15 (b = -.019, p = .015). Consistent with this finding, LCS revealed that increases in experiences of racial discrimination were associated with faster 10-year LTL shortening (b = -.019, p = .015). CONCLUSIONS: This study adds to evidence that racial discrimination contributes to accelerated physiologic weathering and health declines among African Americans through its impact on biological systems, including via its effects on telomere attrition. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).
Located in MPRC People / Natalie Slopen, Sc.D. / Natalie Slopen Publications
Sacoby Wilson cited in housing and health issue
Housing is a social determinant of health
Located in News
Article Reference Troff document (with manpage macros)Challenging Stereotypes: A Counter-Narrative of the Contraceptive Experiences of Low-Income Latinas
Purpose: Reproductive autonomy is associated with educational attainment, advanced employment, and wellbeing. While U.S. Latinas use contraception to control their own childbearing and have reported a desire to do so, they often use it inconsistently and have the lowest rates of contraceptive use of any group. Reasons previously cited for why Latinas do not use contraception compared with non-Latino white women include lack of access, lack of knowledge, language barriers, emphasis on large families, machismo, and religiosity. These reasons are often overly simplistic and can lead to widespread generalizations about Latinas. Methods: Using focus groups and semistructured interviews from November 2014 through June 2015, this study describes the family planning perspectives and experiences of 16 Latinas living in Baltimore and recruited from two federally qualified health centers. A social determinant of health framework was used to guide identification of important concepts and explain findings. Results: Results demonstrated that respondents reported contraceptive agency and claimed autonomy over their bodies; described a sense of responsibility and often expressed caution about having families too large to care for; expressed educational and career aspirations; and perceived contraception as critical for the postponement of childbearing to achieve their goals. Conclusion: The patient/provider encounter should include communication that recognizes all patient preferences and lived experiences to support vulnerable and/or marginalized Latinas in their desires to control their own childbearing and life choices.
Located in Retired Persons / Ruth Zambrana, Ph.D. / Ruth Zambrana Publications