We work with our partner organizations to create resources for writers and producers on a wide variety of compelling health topics. Tip sheets include basic information such as who’s at risk, typical symptoms and case examples for storylines, and additional resources on the topic. Many are also in Spanish. You can access the CDC's Tip Sheets by Topic (A to Z) here, or by using the link at the very bottom of this page. In addition, see our list of featured tip sheets below.
Maternal death is the pregnancy-related mortality of a mother during or after pregnancy—for up to a year postpartum (after birth), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This can include conditions related to the pregnancy, such as hemorrhaging, hypertension, heart disease, and mental health issues such as suicide. While maternal mortality rates around the world decreased by more than one-third from 2000 to 2015, the rate of maternal deaths in the U.S. increased 100% since 1987. (Posted 07/17/18)
For 95% of women who have had an abortion, feelings of relief outweigh any negative emotions. Studies show that women do not regret their decision to terminate a pregnancy—and these feelings are maintained three years later, reports the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health at UC San Francisco’s School of Medicine. Other research has found that most women express “decisional certainty” about choosing an abortion. (Posted 06/27/18)
As people age, their mobility and physical strength diminish and many aspects of a home that were once functional become difficult. For many older adults, living well means living comfortably at home. As people age, physical challenges can make it hard to get around the house. One solution is to remodel the space to accommodate these challenges. (Posted 04/27/18)
Medicaid provides free or low-cost health coverage to millions of Americans including some low-income adults, families and children, pregnant women, older adults, and people with disabilities. Medicaid currently covers 74 million people, or 1 in 5 Americans. More than 1 in 7 low-income older adults with Medicare (or 6.9 million people aged 65+) also rely on Medicaid for their health and long-term care. (Posted 04/27/18)
Ionizing radiation has sufficient energy to cause chemical changes in human cells and damage them. Fortunately, our bodies are extremely efficient at repairing cell damage. The extent of the damage to the cells depends upon the amount and duration of the exposure, as well as the organs exposed. A lot of radiation over a short period, such as from a radiation emergency, can cause burns or radiation sickness. If the exposure is large enough, it can cause premature aging or even death. (Posted 08/29/17)
Childbirth has been a normal and natural life process for women for centuries. Yet today, one-third of babies are surgically born, and interventions (e.g., episiotomy, fetal monitoring) are often overused. Childbirth is the top reason for hospitalization in the U.S., with both obstetricians and hospitals playing a significant role in childbirth. In particular, low-risk, first-birth C-section delivery rates have dramatically increased by 50% across the country over the past decade. Cesarean births are now the most frequent hospital surgery. (Posted 07/28/17)
The number one complication of pregnancy and childbirth is maternal mental health (MMH) disorders, including depression and anxiety, affecting up to 20% of new mothers during pregnancy and the first year after delivery. A lack of awareness of the problem and understanding among both sufferers and providers causes ineffective and/or lack of diagnosis and treatment. (Reposted 11/2/17)
The majority of states require parental involvement in a minor’s decision to have an abortion—either by notification or consent. Since the Supreme Court ruled that states may not give parents a veto over a daughter’s choice, 36 states allow a minor to petition a judge to waive the requirement to notify parents, or obtain one or both parents’ permission. But the judicial bypass process for minors is fraught with difficulties—the various restrictions and requirements in different states can be complicated and unclear—which make the procedure a humiliating or risky experience. (Posted 07/21/17)
The Trump Administration is enthusiastically supporting a vast and expensive “modernization” of our nuclear stockpile, a plan that began under President Obama. A recent report in The New York Times describes how the plan’s costs have recently ballooned from $1 trillion over 30 years to more than $1.2 trillion. The program will not build new nuclear weapons, but instead replace the missiles, submarines and bombers that would deliver them. (Posted 06/20/17)
Since the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade provided women with safe and legal abortion, subsequent decisions have resulted in states having enacted a total of 1,142 restrictions to abortion access. This has created a patchwork of laws that impact women’s health inconsistently and impose financial hardship. Just in the first three months of 2017, state legislators introduced 1,053 measures related to reproductive health, including 431 restrictions to abortion services. Like a game of whack-a-mole, each new restriction is met with a counter lawsuit. (Posted 06/12/17)
For the handful of nations that possess nuclear weapons, how they are controlled and managed has been a fundamental issue since the dawn of the nuclear age. North Korea—a country steeped in secrecy—raises many questions in this regard. How does it ensure its weapons and facilities are safe and secure? The world has no assurances. North Korea's nuclear program remains a source of deep concern for the international community. It is rapidly increasing its stockpile of nuclear weapons material with little pushback from the United States. (Posted 05/03/17)
Deaths from drug overdoses are the number one cause of injury death in the U.S. and most drug overdose deaths (more than six out of ten) involve an opioid. Deaths from prescription opioids—drugs like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methadone—have more than quadrupled since 1999. In a November 2016 report, the Drug Enforcement Administration referred to prescription drugs, heroin and fentanyl as the most significant drug-related threats to the United States. (Posted 04/07/17)
Between 1999 and 2010, overdose deaths from prescription pain killers such as oxycodone (OxyContin) increased more than 400% among women, killing nearly 48,000. Women’s biological and social differences may influence susceptibility to substance abuse, which could have implications for prevention and treatment. (Posted 04/07/17)
Currently over 29 million adults in the United States are living with diabetes, and about 1 in 4 of these people are unaware they have the disease. About 40% of U.S. adults are expected to develop type 2 diabetes over their lifetimes; for Latino/Hispanic adults, it is predicted that over 50% will develop type 2 diabetes (CDC, 2016). Addressing this particular disease burden on the Latino/Hispanic community will require a variety of efforts, including increasing Latino/Hispanic representation in clinical trials. (Posted 02/14/17)
The medications and treatments that we use to deal with different illnesses and injuries have been studied using clinical trials. Unfortunately, the people who often participate rarely include those from underrepresented backgrounds—African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, and people living in rural areas. This lack of diversity in clinical trials hinders opportunities for discovering medication and treatment effects that may only occur in underrepresented populations. (Posted 02/14/17)
With heart disease, we see major differences among different groups of people. It’s the leading cause of death for most racial/ethnic groups in the United States, and is especially common among vulnerable populations, such as ethnic minority groups and low-income populations. Understanding the cause of these differences is critical for developing effective treatments, and clinical trials, with volunteers from diverse groups, can provide vital information. (Posted 02/14/17)
With the increase in longevity and our society’s expansive aging population, more people are living with chronic health conditions. While longer life is seemingly positive, it does come with its detriments. Chronic illness can affect one in their day-to-day life and can make it difficult to perform activities of daily living. (Posted 12/15/16)
More than half of adults who reach age 65 will – at some point – need a high level of support with basic daily activities, such as walking, eating, bathing and getting out of bed. People needing help with basic daily activities may also have a range of additional support that is needed, such as help with paying bills, taking medications regularly, and scheduling and getting to appointments and social activities. (Posted 12/15/16)
According to the U.S. Census Bureau report, the older adult population will continue to grow significantly in the coming years as a result of the aging “baby boom” generation. This will affect families, businesses and health care providers. However, there are steps that can be taken by aging adults to help prepare for their future. (Posted 9/12/16)
Health care today is designed to serve the medical system and providers rather than putting people with care needs first. Health care that puts people first means helping those with significant health conditions live the life they want to live – and not spend all their time inside a doctor’s office or hospital. This is especially true for older adults who have multiple health conditions and difficulty living independently. (Posted 9/12/16)
The face of American society is changing with people living longer than ever before. Yet right now our nation lacks a system of care and support that enables older adults to age with dignity, independence and choice in the face of increasing health and daily needs. Vulnerable older adults need more affordable and accessible options for receiving care and support in their homes so that they don’t have to end up in a nursing home. Fulfilling this need will take unprecedented levels of public involvement, including being engaged in our daily lives, our neighborhoods, our communities and at the state and federal levels. (Posted 9/12/16)
Young African American women under the age of 35 have breast cancer rates that are two times higher than Caucasian women of the same age. Furthermore, young African American women are three times as likely to die from breast cancer as Caucasian women of the same age.
Every day, nearly 4,200 Americans get the terrifying news from their doctor that they have cancer, and the numbers are increasing. Although cancer strikes people of every age, older people have the highest risk—and America’s population is aging.
People diagnosed with epilepsy have had more than one seizure, and they may have more than one kind of seizure. About 2.9 million people in the United States have some form of epilepsy. A seizure happens when abnormal electrical activity in the brain results in an involuntary change in body movement or function, sensation, awareness, or behavior. It can last from a few seconds to minutes.
African American women are disproportionately affected by HIV. Of all the women living with AIDS in the U.S., 60% are African American and two out of three African American women got HIV from having unprotected sex with a man. In 2002, HIV/AIDS was the leading cause of death for African American women aged 25–34 years.
Traditional efforts promoted by CDC to prevent HIV infections have depended on changing people’s behaviors: using condoms for sex, clean needles for injecting drugs, and standard precautions (formally called “universal precautions”) to prevent HIV exposures in the workplace. CDC increasingly recommends the use of PrEP and PEP to prevent HIV infection in these kinds of situations.
Source: CDC, The SCAN Foundation and The California Endowment