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Member since: Wed Feb 10, 2010, 01:12 PM
Number of posts: 4,899

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IMPACT REPORT: 100 Examples of President Obama’s Leadership in Science, Technology, and Innovation

Source: The White House Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release
June 21, 2016

“We’ll restore science to its rightful place."
President Obama’s Inaugural Address, 2009

On January 20, 2009, President Obama issued a simple and powerful pledge: to restore science to its rightful place. Coming into office, the President was committed to reinvigorating the American scientific enterprise through a strong commitment to basic and applied research, innovation, and education; to restoring integrity to science policy; and most importantly, to making decisions on the basis of evidence, rather than ideology.

In a speech at the National Academy of Sciences in April 2009, the President called for expanded investments in research and development and a focus on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education. He noted that science, technology, and innovation are essential to sustaining economic growth, enabling Americans to lead longer and healthier lives, limiting the harm from climate change, and providing U.S. armed forces and homeland defenders with the tools they need to succeed in every contingency.

Today, the Administration is releasing a list of 100 examples of the profound impact that the President’s leadership has had in building U.S. capacity in science, technology, and innovation and bringing that capacity to bear on national goals. The release of this list marks the milestone of Dr. John Holdren becoming, on June 18, 2016, the longest-serving President’s Science Advisor since Vannevar Bush pioneered a similar role while serving Presidents Roosevelt and Truman during and after World War II.



4. Elevated transparency, openness, and scientific integrity as guiding principles for Federal agencies. On the first day of his Administration, the President issued a Presidential Memorandum calling on all the agencies in the Federal Government to work together to create “an unprecedented level of openness” in government and to “establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration.” An Open Government Directive and a plan for implementing those goals were issued in December 2009. In March 2009, the Transparency and Open Government Presidential Memorandum was followed by a Presidential Memorandum on Scientific Integrity, stating in part that:

The public must be able to trust the science and scientific process informing public-policy decisions. Political officials should not suppress or alter scientific or technological findings and conclusions. If scientific and technological information is developed and used by the Federal Government, it should ordinarily be made available to the public.

This Presidential Memorandum called for all agencies to embed these principles in appropriate policies and procedures and charged the OSTP Director with overseeing the development and ensuring the adequacy of the agency plans. Detailed guidance concerning the content of the plans was developed by OSTP in consultation with the agencies over the next 20 months, and 22 agencies subsequently produced and published their scientific integrity plans. Read more, more, and more.

Read more: https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/06/21/impact-report-100-examples-president-obamas-leadership-science

More: https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2016/06/21/100-examples-putting-science-its-rightful-place
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Jun 22, 2016, 02:19 PM (4 replies)

On this issue, Wasserman Schultz is superlative and, frankly, an irreplaceable advocate.

GOOGLE: debbie wasserman schultz site:protect.org

BACKSTORY: http://protect.org/oped/eric-holders-dirty-secret
Read and wonder what's changed since this was written in 2011. Big data, actionable, yet ignored?

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Jun 22, 2016, 01:53 AM (0 replies)

But regulations say a child must actually be lead poisoned before any repairs or moves are approved.


Fear of lead paint in HUD housing leads family to homeless shelter

By Dean Reynolds CBS News
June 21, 2016, 7:11 PM

Published on Jun 21, 2016

The Department of Housing and Urban Development provides rent subsidies for millions of poor families. More than 2.5 million of those homes have hazardous levels of lead. But regulations say a child must actually be lead poisoned before any repairs or moves are approved. Dean Reynolds reports.

CHICAGO -- Over the course of his difficult life, six-year-old Makheil McMullen has had his blood tested more than 30 times. And it's never been easy.

It's been a routine ever since elevated levels of lead were found in Makheil's blood.

"He started having health problems around sixteen months," said his mom, Tolanda McMullen.

Nowadays, Makheil is a slow learner with a speech impediment and attention disorders.


The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provides rent subsidies for the McMullens and millions of other poor families across the country. But HUD regulations say a child must actually be lead-poisoned before any repairs are required or moves approved.
More than two and a half million HUD-subsidized homes have hazardous levels of lead. But HUD's measurement of the danger is four times higher than what's recommended by the Centers for Disease Control.

CBS News

HUD, which declined our request for an on-camera interview, has proposed to bring its standard into line with the tougher CDC position -- but regulatory review takes a long time.

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Tue Jun 21, 2016, 10:00 PM (1 replies)

With each win, Cavaliers built puzzle of Larry O’Brien Trophy on way to NBA title


With each win, Cavaliers built puzzle of Larry O’Brien Trophy on way to NBA title

Monday, June 20, 2016, 2:48 PM

The Cavaliers found the missing piece to their championship puzzle Sunday night.

Throughout the playoffs, the Cavs carried a replica puzzle of the Larry O'Brien Trophy with them, adding pieces to it after each win before finishing it off on Sunday night with a final piece in the shape of Ohio, according to ESPN.

Veteran small forward James Jones took the idea from his time with the Miami Heat in 2012. The Heat head coach, Erik Spoelstra, had his players — Jones and James included — sign a black version of the trophy, signaling a commitment to the team, and then added a gold mark to it after each win.



Posted by proverbialwisdom | Mon Jun 20, 2016, 06:26 PM (0 replies)

PARADIGM SHIFT -> Not simply calories, not only food.



Science, not advertising.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Jun 8, 2016, 06:23 PM (0 replies)

JAMA: 35% of men, 40% of women and 17% of children and adolescents are obese in the US.


Obesity increases in U.S women, study finds

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN
Updated 1:52 PM ET, Tue June 7, 2016

CNN - There doesn't appear to be much headway being made in the battle to curb obesity in the United States, according to a pair of studies released Tuesday.
Updated findings show that 35% of men, 40% of women and 17% of children and adolescents are obese, according to two articles published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

These figures remain high in spite of the "hundreds of millions of dollars" that have been pumped into research, trials, observational studies, community and hospital programs, and the development of devices and drugs, said an accompanying JAMA editorial.

There are also the attempts of schools, communities, companies and places of worship to control weight gain, but the country's three-decades-old obesity epidemic is hanging on strong.

"Although it is impossible to know what the extent of the obesity epidemic would have been without these efforts, the data reported ... certainly do not suggest much success," wrote Dr. Jody Zylke and Dr. Howard Bauchner, the deputy editor and editor in chief, respectively, of JAMA.


The editorial writers, Zylke and Bauchner, wondered whether genetics might "unlock some of the mysteries of obesity" but added that this course of discovery would take time. Prevention, they said, must remain the focus for now, even if current initiatives seem to have made little difference.

"Perhaps it is time for the medical and public health communities to embrace a relationship with the food and restaurant industries," they wrote. "These industries have been good at developing and successfully marketing unhealthy foods; perhaps it will be possible for them to develop and market healthy foods."

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Tue Jun 7, 2016, 03:22 PM (0 replies)

Additional disruption in "settled science" (nothing to see here) and the lag in medical education.


Protecting Kids from Environmental Exposure

Children’s rapid development during the fetal period through early childhood makes them more vulnerable to environmental exposure. Contact the nearest Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit to learn how to protect your child from exposure to health hazards in the environment.


Doctors Uncomfortable Discussing Environmental Health

Taking an environmental history is essential for healthcare providers to understand patients' exposure risks and help reduce them, but most physicians and other healthcare providers are not taught the importance of an exposure history during their medical education. For example, responses to a survey of members of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in 2014 reported that:2

* Only 1 in 15 physicians have received training on environmental exposures.
* Half of the respondents rarely take an environmental health history.
* Less than 20% counsel patients about environmental exposures common in pregnant women in the United States.
* However, 78% of respondents did agree that counseling patients about environmental health hazards could prevent exposures.

Doctors who don't counsel their patients reported that they did not know enough about environmental exposures and were uncertain about evidence. They were also concerned that patients would be unable to reduce their exposure or that counseling would alarm them.

Another survey in 2015 was sent to pediatric blood and cancer specialists. Most of them indicated that families of children with cancer asked about environmental connections to their children's illnesses, but the doctors were uncomfortable discussing the topic. Over 77% suspected that their cases did have an environmental origin, but their methods of taking environmental histories varied widely.3

The results of both these surveys indicate the need for increased physician education on the relationship between environmental exposures and health effects—in medical school, during residencies, and after beginning practice.



1. Trasande L, Liu Y. Reducing The Staggering Costs Of Environmental Disease In Children, Estimated At $76.6 Billion In 2008. Health Affairs, 30, no.5 (2011):863-870

2. Stotland NE, Sutton P, Trowbridge J, Atchley DS, Conry J, et al. (2014) Counseling Patients on Preventing Prenatal Environmental Exposures - A Mixed Methods Study of Obstetricians. PLoS ONE 9(6): e98771. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0098771

3. Zachek CM, Miller MD, Hsu C, Schiffman JD, Sallan S, et. al. Children's Cancer and Environmental Exposures: Professional Attitudes and Practices. J Pediatr Hematol Oncol 2015;37:491–497.

More: http://www.pehsu.net
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Sat Jun 4, 2016, 03:08 PM (0 replies)


For the public:

For clinicians:


UCSF presentation reveals glyphosate contamination in people across America
Published: 25 May 2016

More: http://www.greenpeace.org/eu-unit/Global/eu-unit/reports-briefings/2016/BR%20glyphosate%20approval%20-%20FINAL%20%2003032016.pdf

Related: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/mar/06/health-costs-hormone-disrupting-chemicals-150bn-a-year-europe-says-study
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Jun 3, 2016, 07:07 PM (1 replies)

Press Statement by Secretary of State John Kerry on June 4, 2014


Message on the 25th Anniversary of Tiananmen Square

Press Statement

John Kerry

Secretary of State
Washington, DC

June 4, 2014

Today of all days, we remember the courage and commitment of hundreds of thousands of peaceful protesters who took to the streets to demand fundamental, universal rights. I’ll never forget turning on the television in my office and seeing a column of tanks halted by a single man armed only with his conscience. In those uncertain days, I was in the presence of 2,000 students in Massachusetts. I shared with them that these events were not the happenings of a weekend, but the happenings of an epoch, of a lifetime, and they demanded a moral and political response.

For all people who seek freedom, Tiananmen Square still stirs our conscience. That is why the United States and the international community commemorate the tragic loss of hundreds of lives and the heavy price paid by those who braved the violence in pursuit of the freedom to express their views. We express our sorrow to the families still grieving the loved ones, the lost, and especially to the Tiananmen Mothers.

We all recognize and appreciate that China has made marked social and economic progress in the past several decades. Continued progress will be defined by openness not just to the world, but to the voices and diverse perspectives of China’s citizens. Open discussion and examination of the events of 1989 and a full public accounting of those killed, detained, or missing would be a sign of strength and healing, not weakness and division. A peaceful, prosperous future is made more promising by healing the wounds of the past. We call on Chinese authorities to release from prison all those still serving sentences in connection with the events surrounding June 4, 1989, and end the ongoing pattern of harassment, detention, and official retribution against those who participated in the demonstrations, their family members, and those who continue to bravely speak out. We also urge China to release those who were detained in advance of the anniversary of June 4, and to uphold its international commitments to protect fundamental freedoms of all in China. All societies are stronger when every citizen has a say and a stake in their country’s direction.

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Jun 3, 2016, 04:24 PM (0 replies)

Antipsychotic prescribing trends in youths with autism and intellectual disability


Antipsychotic prescribing trends in youths with autism and intellectual disability

May 31, 2016

About one in 10 youths treated with an antipsychotic are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder or intellectual disability. Conversely, one in six youths diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder has been prescribed antipsychotics. These findings are reported in the June 2016 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (JAACAP). Furthermore, the results suggest that the proportion of adolescents with autism or intellectual disability has increased among youths treated with antipsychotics and that more youths with autism or intellectual disability have received antipsychotics.

Currently, second-generation antipsychotics are the only FDA-approved medications for youth with autism. However, these are approved only for the symptomatic control of irritability and aggression. They do not have an indication for youth with intellectual disability, and they do not seem to affect the core symptoms of autism spectrum disorders, such as social and communication difficulties, or the core symptoms of intellectual disability, such as problems with understanding and responding appropriately to information from the outside world.

Performing a meta-analysis of 39 studies and over 350,000 youth with mental illness, a group of researchers led by Christoph U. Correll, MD, of Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine, examined the frequency and time trends of antipsychotic prescribing in youth with autism spectrum disorders or intellectual disability, mostly drawing on data from large registry-based studies.

"Although the increased prescribing of antipsychotics in youth with autism spectrum disorders or intellectual disability cannot be judged as appropriate or inappropriate based on database studies, side effects of antipsychotics can be quite problematic, especially in children and adolescents," said Correll. "Therefore, clinicians should perform very careful risk: benefit evaluation before and after starting youth with autism spectrum disorders or intellectual disability on an antipsychotic, always trying to maximize non-pharmacologic interventions as well as pharmacologic or non-pharmacologic treatments for comorbidities, including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and sleep disorders."



Su Young Park, Chiara Cervesi, Britta Galling, Silvia Molteni, Frozan Walyzada, Stephanie H. Ameis, Tobias Gerhard, Mark Olfson, Christoph U. Correll.

Antipsychotic Use Trends in Youth With Autism Spectrum Disorder and/or Intellectual Disability: A Meta-Analysis.

Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 2016; 55 (6): 456 DOI: 1016/j.jaac.2016.03.012

Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Jun 3, 2016, 01:11 PM (0 replies)
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