New Year, New Resources

Now that you’ve taken down the holiday decorations and exchanged all those gifts of clothing that always seem to be the wrong size, what better way to start 2010 than by resolving to stock your nursing toolbox with a new supply of resources for improving the health of culturally diverse patients and communities. Minority Nurse’s fourth annual Resources Roundup once again presents a sampling of free or low-cost print, online and audio/visual materials available to help nurses make more effective treatment decisions, promote disease prevention in communities of color and empower patients by giving them a gift that’ll last all year long: the information they need to take control of their own health.

As part of its Effective Health Care Program comparative effectiveness research initiative (see article on page 24), the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) offers a series of online guides to assist clinicians in making well-informed, evidence-based decisions about the pros and cons of different treatment options. The series currently includes guides comparing treatments for prostate cancer, diabetes, hypertension, depression, osteoporosis and other conditions. Each clinician guide has an accompanying patient guide, some of which are also available in Spanish and audio versions. Downloadable free of charge from:

The aging of the baby boomer population means a growing number of Americans of all races and ethnicities may be facing the likelihood of needing hip or knee replacements. Joint Replacement Surgery: Information for Multicultural Communities, a patient education booklet from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), uses plain, clear language and culturally appropriate graphics to explain the risks and benefits of these procedures and what to expect before, during and after surgery. Free copies are available from:

Compared to the majority population, African Americans are less likely to complete advance directives and take advantage of end-of-life care options such as hospice and palliative care. To help nurses and other health educators increase awareness of the importance of end-of-life care planning in the black community, social worker Gloria Thomas Anderson has created an educational outreach kit based on her successful booklet What Y’all Gon’ Do With Me? The African American Spiritual and Ethical Guide to End-of-Life Care. The kit, which sells for $199.99 plus shipping/handling, includes a 22-minute DVD, a training manual and a CD-ROM full of additional resources. For more information:

According to the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA), surgical patients who take traditional, non-Western medications, such as herbal remedies, need to be informed about the serious side effects that can occur when these medicines interact with anesthetics. To help nurse anesthetists convey this important message, AANA has created a patient handout, Herbal Products and Your Anesthesia (also available in Spanish). The pamphlet discusses the risks and explains why it’s essential for patients to tell their anesthesia provider about any herbal medicines they’re taking. Free copies are available from: (click on “For Patients,” then “Brochures & Resources”).

The Native Art for Cancer project, a collaboration between the University of Washington’s Native People for Cancer Control (NPCC) program and local American Indian/Alaska Native artists, is an innovative outreach program designed to increase cancer awareness and prevention in Native American communities across the Northwest. Based on the idea that visual art is a powerful way to deliver cancer education in Native communities, NPCC has created a series of colorful posters and brochures featuring contemporary and traditional Native art that reflects Northwestern and Alaskan tribal cultures. For more information and free materials: Steve Charles, (206) 543-5342 or

New Year, New Resources

For people with diabetes, and especially those who lack organizational skills, staying on top of the day-to-day process of managing their disease can be overwhelming. From meal planning and monitoring blood sugar levels to scheduling doctor visits and tests, it’s an awful lot of stuff to keep track of. As a free service to patients, the pharmaceutical firm Eli Lilly and Company offers a variety of convenient, pocket-sized diabetes management tools, such as a self-care diary (available in Chinese, Tagalog, Korean and five other languages) and patient checklists in English and Spanish.

A recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveals that three out of 1,000 children in the U.S. between the ages of six and 17 have been diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome (TS), a neurological disorder characterized by involuntary motor and vocal tics. But African American and Hispanic kids are far less likely to be diagnosed with TS than white kids, due to lack of awareness about the disorder in communities of color. To educate parents and health professionals about the causes, symptoms and treatment of TS, the Tourette Syndrome Association offers a wide variety of resources, including brochures, fact sheets, videos and public service ads. To order materials:

For many people who are immigrants to the U.S., continuing to eat the traditional foods they enjoyed in their native land is an important part of preserving their cultural heritage. But some traditional foods popular in Hispanic communities can become contaminated by bacteria and cause serious food-borne illnesses. To help community health educators raise awareness of two such food safety risks—raw oysters and Queso Fresco (Mexican-style soft cheeses that are sometimes made from unpasteurized milk)—the Food and Drug Administration has developed bilingual outreach toolkits featuring posters, fact sheets, fotonovelas, cooked oyster recipes and more. Free copies are available from: