Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Eye Opener: Online Learning Activities

Final hello to the "BKNVS^2" group members ;). (stands for Brenda's Environmental Health, Keeping it Green with Shannon, Noah's Greenlicious Environmental, Valerie the Spring Girl, Samantha Running with the Wild, and last but not least Sara H's Safe Environment).

Here's a brief description on our last hands-on class activity....

Sara H's activity:

Sara's activity was a quiz called "Quit Smoking". The quiz was a series of 10 questions that discussed the bad health effects linked with smoking. I scored 80/100 points. I think it was very informative and interesting to read over the facts even though some are basically "preached" by health educators. Good work Sara! Great job overall in the class, it was a pleasure being in the same group as you.

Samantha's activity:
Nice job Samantha; I think it's great that the test was designed in a way that we had to repeat wrong answers until we figured it out. Good job not allowing us to quit! :).....Overall I thought the info was legit, and "Kid's Quiz" could be played by anyone just for fun not just for kids; I think. Nice work overall with your project. You seem to be very into the whole "Keep Our Kids Healthy" challenge, and I think it's great. Keep working hard; it was a fun having you as part of my group.

Shannon's activity:
I think your activity was great, it took me a "second time around" to figure it out. It was fun, and it reminds me of the game I play on my cellphone all the time. It was very simple, yet nice to hear that "bip" sound whenever I figured out about the matching group of fruits. Nice work Shannon, and also it was nice having you as a group member. Way to go on your overall Advocacy Project. :)!

Noah's activity:
I didn't get a chance to play your activity because I encountered computer problems. I am sure it would've been a great CrossWord Puzzle. Anyways great job with your project, nice focus...;). It was fun working with you in a group.

Have a GREAT SUMMER you all.......

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Final Reflection!!!

Once again, Hello Everyone.... for the last time...

:) don't let all the writing overwhelm you....I just had a lot to say..<3

I've never experienced a "bitter-sweet" feeling in any class since I started college, though it's just a year ago. Like we all say, "there's a first time for everything" so I'm guessing this is mine for a happy/sad end of a class in college. Like I mentioned in my first reflection of this class, I wasn't planning to take this at all initially. It was a last minute decision just because I needed credits.
Looking at my schedule, all I paid attention to was "
Health 3500" since that's what's written on the "4-year-plan" catalog. After two weeks of classes I finally got into this class; I wasn't sure what to expect from this class after the first discussion we had about reading 1 "The Challenges We Face" which was a basic overview of environmental issues faced worldwide.

Anyway, as the class went on I really started enjoying the discussions, Documentaries, Eye Openers and Share and Voices. My favorite category was the
Eye Openers. The specific eye opener that opened my eyes the most was "Ecological Foot Print " which basically summed up my effects on our planet. I was very surprised that it would take 3 planets to support us if everyone were to lived like me. The documentary I think challenged my thinking the most was the series of "Unnatural Causes Is Inequality Making us sick". The series compelled me to think more critically of our society as a whole, considering that there are some who are living way better lives when we could be somewhat be "equalized" eventually.

The last couple of weeks of class were way more chilled compared to the whole semester.
I like how we started of a little intense then slowly the demands of the class became more chilled as we got used to blogging, and understood the assignments better. So "pat on the back"
Dr. V. :).....
During week 15 and 16, we got introduced to "junking/repurposing"
and got a chance to meet Sue Whitney, Author & Owner of JunkMarket. She explained to us how her business came about and gave us brief instructions on junking.

On the last day of class, 5/8/09, we shared our ideas on what we've learned in this class and how it has affected us, if it has at all.
Overall, I think this class was the most educative class I've taken in college so far; speaking in terms of having a more rounded view of our world. It was not only about staying "green" like I expected, but also about being more aware of other political and environmental issues in our societies. As the class went on I enjoyed commenting on blogs, instead of dreading them...a good sign of learning. :)

Thanks to my group members Brenda, Shannon, Noah, Samantha, and Sara H for participating on my blog site. And also everyone else..... Have a Great and Safe SUMMER everyone! I am sooo looking forward to summer... as usual...:)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Share and Voice: Mother Nature Needs Us

~Hey Everyone~

I decided to share another environmental video for my last share and voice. I've really gotten into these videos, there a
re plenty of them on Youtube. This particular video it's a short song about the environment titled "Mother Nature Needs Us". It's fun and educative. I really liked it and I hope you guys enjoy it as well.

Thanks for watching!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Advocacy Project: Health Care Wheel of Fortune

Hello web group!

I had a hard time choosing a fun activity related to better he
alth care. I looked around the web and finally stumbled across this game, WordMeister Game - Healthcare. It's kind of like Wheel of Fortune, but only health-related words. The game is going to test your ability on health-related terms. It's a very easy game, but you have to be smart about the letters you choose so you won't get too many misses. The steps are on the website, it's very descriptive so I won't repeat myself.

Here is more info on health care:
No Insurance, Poor Health
National Association for Healthcare Quality

I hope you fave fun playing this game......

Thanks for your participation!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Reflection: Weeks 13 & 14

Hello everyone!

I can't believe we're almost done with the school year! The past two weeks have once again been more relaxed than I thought they would.

We started week 13 by watching a short video called the "Story of Stuff" by Annie Leonard. It was a funny yet educative video. We also had to write the Issue Overview of our Advocacy Project. I thought it was going to be a really challenging assignment, but once I started working on it, it just came to me easily. While working on this assignment, I learned more about my issue. Which is: there are plenty of people in this country with no health coverage due low income. The goal is for everyone to receive access to quality health care services.
We got to go to Bagley Nature Area during week 13 also. It was a fun learning experience, we got a chance to be adventurous, walking trough woods, and learning how to track our steps . Even though I had no idea what I was doing I still fun.

During week 14 we had a guest speaker named Raelene Horvik, a graduat
e student in UMD's Environmental Health and Safety Master's Program. He talked about his experience working as in the field of Environmental Health, and also explained about the opportunities with focusing on Environmental health as your field of study. We also had a chance to write a letter to our political representative explaining our issue briefly and asking them to vote "yes" on the bill supporting our advocacy project.
I didn't get a chance to go to class on Thursday during week 14, but looking at the calender, we were going to work on a "Repurposing" activity and have a "Junk Competition". I am sure it was a lot of fun, sucks that I couldn't make it.
I can't believe we only have two weeks left, I am looking forward to it and can't wait school is over. Have a great weekend!

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Advocacy Project: Letter to Public Official

April 28, 2009
Senator Amy Klobuchar
U.S. Senate
302 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Senator Klobuchar,

I am writing to you because I am concerned about the poor health care services faced in this country. I am truly concerned about the number of people who don’t have access to quality heath care and those that aren't cared for well. I hope that our nation will improve access to comprehensive, high-quality health care services for all, not just those who can afford it. I think low income and disabled individuals deserve the same quality health care as the higher-income individuals. Senator Linda Berglin proposed the bill S.F. No. 2 - Health Care on February 28th 2007 regarding this issue. This bill requires that all hospitals and health care providers must have in place an interoperable electronic health records system in place by January 1, 2015, and that the Health Information Technology and Infrastructure Advisory Committee shall develop a statewide plan to meet this goal, including uniform standards for the interoperable system. This new technology would lead to more accessible health info among nurses and doctors benefiting the patient with better heath services.
I hope that you vote “yes” to S.F. No 2- Health Care bill. Many members of our society are in need of better health care to live with less worries since good health is so important to all. With your help, many lives will be touched in great ways.


Valerie Voufack

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Advocacy Project: Issue Review

Hey Everyone!

I am doing my Advocacy Project on adequate Health Care for all. The issue is that there plenty of people in this country with no health care coverage due to low income. I am happy to see that the S.F. No. 2 - Health Care bill (Second Engrossment) has been passed by Senator Linda Berglin as of Feb 28th 07 on this issue. I think everyone is affected by this issue, but the people affected the most are less educated individuals, which of course ties into low income. Disables are also affected, and males are more affected than women.


I think the consequence of providing less accessible or adequate health care to individuals could lead to dispute among government agencies. Deciding on who needs it the most would be a challenge since some might need it more than others. They consequences faced by society could be the feeling of “I deserve this more than you”. "A society should function like a salad bold trying to benefit from each dressing, not trying to force an individual to use the same ingredient as you"- Human Diversity professor. Looking at this issue in this way would definitely have a positive impact.


The economic impact associated with this issues could be less efficient workers, leaving employers at a frustrated line end. Employers from every industry could be affected by this, not just hospitals. Having less healthy employees would of course cause jobs to slow down, and as we all know time is money, so this would be a big issue in the corporate world. The benefits of this could be that people are going to be compelled to work harder just so they earn enough money to support their families.A social impact encountered by not having adequate health care could be the feeling of worthlessness. The most important aspect of life is having good health, and if some individuals feel like they can’t help themselves it could make them feel like they are good enough. I think there could also be a benefit associated with this issue. They privileged might feel the need to help others than aren’t a fortunate as they are; of course this would bring our society together.


Barriers linked to this issue could be the feeling of “I don’t belong” in that group. To some people being able to get medical good medical attention gives them a sense of peace, and if there is a problem they can figure steps to take to help themselves. Not having a more accessible health care might hinder some people from things because of their constant worries of “am really I ok?” This feeling eventually leads to depression and isolation for some because they feel like the have no power over a problem that could be solved. Some approaches that could be used to address this issue could be a door to door questionnaire about the effects of poor health care on individuals in both poor and rich neighborhood so we can get both views. I understand a door question might not be as successful since not everyone is going to want to participate and might also be very inconvenient, but I am sure they are people that would be willing to give their 100% attention. Another way could be through online surveys since, this might be easier.


According to Healthy People 2010, through the decade there was a mid course review done by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services agencies, and other experts. Healthy People 2010 also states that “primary care and preventive health care services remain the central health promotion and disease prevention components of the American health care system”.

I think the firm supporters of better health care would be parents, especially if they have a disabled or sick child that demand constant medical attention that overwhelms them. I also think a lot of other people like educators, and everyday people would be very supportive because they are affected by this issue on almost a daily bases. I did some research through the UMD library Academic Search engine to find out who might really oppose to the view because I had a hard thinking of some. Well, it came to my attention that they are actually a lot of people who oppose it and also some health insurance companies because they would lose a lot business. The two opposing viewers who interested the most were Mark Botkin and Mitch Rochester . Their primary reason is that “They’re afraid that the health care lobby is much too powerful to allow meaningful cost containment.”

I would of course be happy to have my policy-makers vote YES on the proposed bill S.F. No. 2 - Health Care bill (Second Engrossment).

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Share and Voice: Becoming American

Hey Everyone!

I decided to watch another video from"Unnatural Causes...Is Inequality Is Inequality Making Us Sick?" titled "Becoming American". I chose this particular video because I can relate to it, since I am an immigrant.
Like the previous video we watched, this video discusses the correlation of race and health. This video focuses on Mexican Immigrants, unlike the other "In sickness and in Wealth", which focuses on African Americans.

The video was shot in in Kenneth Square, Pennsylvania, a very diverse area. It focuses on a specific family, I can't remember what their name is, and also did some research on their health and other Mexican population. It turns out that most immigrants are healthier than American, considering that they have few cases of psychotic disorders and other diseases such as cancer, and also less chronic illnesses. The main reason for this is the "family ties" , and also support from family friends. The video states that 1/4 Americans have ties with "social isolation", and this causes really bad health effects. I am going to keep this brief since it's share and voice. I have too much to say. :) I am actually planning on watching all these videos when I get a chance, this whole documentary seems very interesting.

Social Isolation: When people work harder than they ought to be working and are increasingly isolated, putting themselves at higher risk for diseases.

Thanks for reading!

Reflection: Weeks 11 & 12

Hello everyone!

I hope everyone enjoyed the weather this past week like i did. It finally feels like Spring! :), my favorite season of course....:). Anyways, I also enjoyed the past two weeks in class. There weren't as intense as I expected, so that was definitely a plus since all my other classes were demanding.

During week 11 we watched video titled "Unnatural Causes...Is Inequality Making Us Sick?". This is a four-hour documentary that explored some racial and socioeconomic bias in health. I was so interested I actually decided to check out it form the library and watch other parts that I found interesting since we only got to watch part one "In sickness and in Wealth." I was moved by the the facts in this video because I've never thought of our society the way the video portrayed it. One thing that moved me the most in this video was the correlation of health and race in American society. It mentioned that wealthy people live longer healthier lives since they have less stress, considering that they have easier access to resources. I thought this fact applied to everyone, but unfortunately the video also revealed that African Americans would live shorter lives regardless if they're wealthy. I couldn't help but think of myself in because I relate to the African American society group the most in America. I could go into details about this, but I think you guys get the picture. :)

The main focus of week 12 was basically about solutions and improvements in the "environmentally-friendly world". We worked on our second Advocacy Project assignment called "Healthy People Thomas". We had to pick a topic that we will later advocate on as the semester comes to an end. My topic of choice is Access to Quality to Health Care Services. I am hoping to learn a lot from this topic by the research I will do, and also be able to promote the goal well enough to my political representatives.

Have a great weekend, and I hope the weather is going to be as nice as today.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Advocacy Project: Healthy People/THOMAS

Hello Everyone!
I decided to focus on health care for my Advocacy topic. So here are some facts about it!

Healthy People Goal 1: Access to Quality Health Care Services

Goal: to improve access to comprehensive, high quality health care services, and eliminate health disparities.
Objective: To provide better, more accessible services to home health care, adult day, assisted living, nursing home, and hospitals.

Target: 100%
Baseline:83% of people under age 65 years were covered by health insurance in 1997.

The Progress Quotient Chart indicates that individuals of all ages moved toward target for Sources of Ongoing Care by 11%. The chart also shows that Asian/Pacific Islander met the target for Health Professions(100%) in 1996–97 and 2001–02, while African American and Hispanic population moved toward the target by less than 10%. Poison Control Centers have been doing a really good job providing great services, and exceeded the target in 1999, 2000 by providing single toll-free number. The list goes on.....

Opportunities and Challenges: Residents with limited access to primary and preventive health care need to be focused on, so their health needs may be identified and met. There are challenges encountered for meeting targets for long-term care (LTC) services of nursing home, care home health, assisted living, and adult day care.

Emerging Issues: Timely access to the ED should be studied and tracked using measures that address health care disparities. Issues faced in LTC include topics of workforce, insurance, and consumer-directed services. Adding on, quality of care is an ongoing issue.

Disparities are showed in these three charts:
-Race and Ethnicity
-Gender and Education
-Income, location and Disability

The topic of Quality Health Care is pretty broad, so I had a hard time finding a specific bill that relates to it, but I did find something I think is relevant. It contains too many sections and it's too, so here is a link to it. :)

S.F. No. 2 - Health Care (Second Engrossment)
Author: Senator Linda Berglin
Prepared by: Katie Cavanor, Senate Counsel (651/296-3801)
Date: February 28th, 2007
Vote Yes for S.F.No. 2-
Health Care bill.

Thanks for reading!