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To assess whether a community water service is associated with the frequency of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB) consumption, obesity, or perceived health status in rural Alaska.
We examined the cross-sectional associations between community water access and frequency of SSB consumption, body mass index categories, and perceived health status using data from the 2013 and 2015 Alaska Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). Participants were categorized by zip code to ‘in-home piped water service’ or ‘no in-home piped water service’ based on water utility data. We evaluated the univariable and multivariable (adjusting for age, household income and education) associations between water service and outcomes using log-linear survey-weighted generalized linear models.
Rural Alaska, USA.
Eight hundred and eighty-seven adults, aged 25 years and older.
In unadjusted models, participants without in-home water reported consuming SSB more often than participants with in-home water (1·46, 95 % CI: 1·06, 2·00). After adjustment for potential confounders, the effect decreased but remained borderline significant (1·29, 95 % CI: 1·00, 1·67). Obesity was not significantly associated with water service but self-reported poor health was higher in those communities without in-home water (1·63, 95 % CI: 1·05, 2·54).
Not having access to in-home piped water could affect behaviours surrounding SSB consumption and general perception of health in rural Alaska.
To measure the trends in traditional marine food intake and serum vitamin D levels in Alaska Native women of childbearing age (20–29 years old) from the 1960s to the present.
We measured a biomarker of traditional food intake, the δ15N value, and vitamin D level, as 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (25(OH)D3) concentration, in 100 serum samples from 20–29-year-old women archived in the Alaska Area Specimen Bank, selecting twenty-five per decade from the 1960s to the 1990s. We compared these with measurements of red-blood-cell δ15N values and serum 25(OH)D3 concentrations from 20–29-year-old women from the same region collected during the 2000s and 2010s in a Center for Alaska Native Health Research study.
The Yukon Kuskokwim Delta region of south-west Alaska.
Alaska Native women (n 319) aged 20–29 years at the time of specimen collection.
Intake of traditional marine foods, as measured by serum δ15N values, decreased significantly each decade from the 1960s through the 1990s, then remained constant from the 1990s through the present (F5,306=77·4, P<0·0001). Serum vitamin D concentrations also decreased from the 1960s to the present (F4,162=26·1, P<0·0001).
Consumption of traditional marine foods by young Alaska Native women dropped significantly between the 1960s and the 1990s and was associated with a significant decline in serum vitamin D concentrations. Studies are needed to evaluate the promotion of traditional marine foods and routine vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy for this population.
We investigated a large outbreak of community-onset methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections in southwestern Alaska to determine the extent of these infections and whether MRSA isolates were likely community acquired.
Retrospective cohort study.
Rural southwestern Alaska.
All patients with a history of culture-confirmed S. aureus infection from March 1, 1999, through August 10, 2000.
More than 80% of culture-confirmed S. aureus infections were methicillin resistant, and 84% of MRSA infections involved skin or soft tissue; invasive disease was rare. Most (77%) of the patients with MRSA skin infections had communityacquired MRSA (no hospitalization, surgery, dialysis, indwelling line or catheter, or admission to a long-term-care facility in the 12 months before infection). Patients with MRSA skin infections were more likely to have received a prescription for an antimicrobial agent in the 180 days before infection than were patients with methicillin-susceptible S. aureus skin infections.
Our findings indicate that the epidemiology of MRSA in rural southwestern Alaska has changed and suggest that the emergence of community-onset MRSA in this region was not related to spread of a hospital organism. Treatment guidelines were developed recommending that beta-lactam antimicrobial agents not be used as a first-line therapy for suspected S. aureus infections.
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