jGPHA Volume 1, Number 1 (2006)
Table to Contents
From the Editor
Meeting Public Health Challenges, M. Thomas
Practice in Action
A Worldwide Crisis: Inappropriate Antibiotic Use and Resistant Bacterial Infections, A. Vickery, J. Wilde
Sexually Transmitted Infections: Perceived Knowledge versus Actual Knowledge, H. Ferguson, R. Topolski, & M. Miller
An Examination of Adolescents’ Knowledge and Attitudes Related to Heart Disease, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Media Influences and the Adoption of a Healthy Lifestyle, M. Schenkman, R. Martin, & S. Butler
Knowledge and Attitudes of Restaurant Operators Concerning the Requirements of the Georgia Smoke-Free Air Act, J. B. Fountain
McKinley Thomas, Augusta State University, Mercer University School of Medicine
Kathi J. Bivens, Augusta State University
Georgia L. Gerard-Reed, Augusta State University
Paula Dohoney, Augusta State University
Curtis Gobely, Georgia Division of Public Health
Anthony Parrillo, Georgia Southern University
Jane M. Perry, Georgia Division of Public Health
Rebecca Rogers, Augusta State University
Lee Tanenbaum, Georgia Division of Public Health
Anna Vickery, Medical College of Georgia
Naomi Williams, Medical College of Georgia
Knowledge and Attitudes of Restaurant Operators Concerning the Requirements of the Georgia Smoke-Free Air ActThe State of Georgia enacted the Georgia Smoke-Free Air Act (GSAA) in 2005 to limit smoking in public places including restaurants. The purpose of this study was to determine if a correlation exists between restaurant operators’ attitude toward smoking regulation and prevention and their knowledge of requirements of the GSAA. Participants from Atkinson, Bacon, and Jeff Davis counties, three of the smaller populated rural counties of the Southeast Health District, completed questionnaires for this study (n = 41). The correlation was weak and not determined to be statistically significant (r = - .251) but did indicate restaurant operators agree they have not lost more customers than have been gained as a result of the enactment of the GSAA. The study also indicates that these restaurants do not have access to computers, printers, and the Internet for GSAA information, education, or requirements.
An Examination of Adolescents’ Knowledge and Attitudes Related to Heart Disease, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Media Influences and the Adoption of a Healthy LifestyleThe present pilot study aimed to determine the attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, and degree of knowledge among adolescents related to healthy eating, exercise, heart disease, the influence of television, and possible factors in modifying their attitudes toward adopting a healthy lifestyle. Juniors and seniors from two private high schools (N=62) in metro Atlanta were surveyed. The study was based on the Social Cognitive Theory and the Health Belief Model. The research questions examined the impact of nutrition and heart disease knowledge on physical activity behavior, and the impact of television media exposure on eating habits. A 36-question cross-sectional survey compiled from various sources in the literature and health-related organizations was used to assess the outcomes of interest. Data analysis was conducted using frequencies, descriptive statistics, simple hypothesis tests, and chisquare analysis. Those who reported physical activity participation and those who did not, were not found to differ significantly on their composite nutrition and heart disease knowledge score, F (6,55)=.763, p=. 602. In addition, the three groups, reporting different amounts of physical activity participation in hours/week, were not found to differ significantly on their composite nutrition and heart disease knowledge score F (6, 50)=1.628, p=. 159. In terms of television viewing’s effect on eating habits, television viewing was not found to play a significant role in the frequency of breakfast food consumption F (3, 57)=2.269, p=. 090; or on how often adolescents ate fast food, F (1, 59)=. 025, p=. 875. Yet, the amount of television hours viewed on a typical weekday were significantly related to how often an adolescent thinks about their health when deciding what to eat (X= .008). The 5 groups of amounts of television viewing hours, differed significantly on how often adolescents’ thought about their health when deciding what to eat, specifically those who thought about their health always and sometimes F (3, 57)=3.241, p=. 029). The Post Hoc test showed a significant difference of .998 hours in the amount of TV watched by those who always think about their health when deciding what to eat (M=2.11 hours/weekday) and those who sometimes think about it (M=3.10 hours/weekday). Suggested primary implications for public health practice include access to school-sponsored or recreational sports teams for all adolescents, nutrition and heart disease education via sports teams, and parental involvement in their adolescent’s food choices and health behavior.
Sexually Transmitted Infections: Perceived Knowledge versus Actual KnowledgeSexually transmitted infections (STIs) continue to be a serious problem, with potentially severe consequences. Past research has found that people may not seek out treatment for STIs because they do not know what symptoms to look for (Greenberg et al., 2002). The present study investigated many aspects of STI knowledge, including perceived knowledge and actually knowledge. Moreover, this study added a novel and applied aspect to the assessment of STI knowledge: visual knowledge. Overall, participants performed poorly on the actual STI knowledge, however, those who rated their knowledge as high performed significantly better than those who rated their knowledge as low. The data revealed two significant predictors of actual STI knowledge, level of STI education and number of previously contracted STIs. In addition, it was found that participants performed better on the written portion of the test than the visual portion of the test. The authors content that increased education may assist in reducing the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases.
A Worldwide Crisis: Inappropriate Antibiotic Use and Resistant Bacterial InfectionsThe GUARD (Georgia United against Antibiotic Resistant Disease) Coalition seeks to reduce the spread of antibiotic-resistant disease and save antibiotic efficacy by decreasing inappropriate antibiotic use throughout the state of Georgia. The GUARD Coalition functions through the collaborative efforts of approximately 148 professional, academic, and community partners.