AMA Adopts New Public Health Policies at Annual Meeting

17 Jun, 2008, 01:00 ET from American Medical Association

    CHICAGO, June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Medical
 Association (AMA), the nation's largest physician organization, voted today
 at its Annual Meeting to adopt the following new public health policies.
 
     APPROPRIATE SUPPLEMENTATION OF VITAMIN D: The current Reference Intake
 Values for Vitamin D were established by the Food and Nutrition Board in
 1997. Current research suggests that the Upper Limits for adults is likely
 overly conservative. Today the AMA called on the FDA to re-examine the
 current Daily Reference Intake Value for Vitamin D in light of new
 scientific findings.
 
     "The health benefits of Vitamin D are plentiful, such as strong bones
 and a reduced risk of breast cancer and cardiovascular disease," said AMA
 Board Member Steven Stack, M.D. "It's time to take a good look at the
 current daily recommended level of Vitamin D and ensure that Americans know
 the appropriate levels so they can reap the full health benefits."
 
     RATING SYSTEM FOR PROCESSED FOODS: Nutritional information can be
 difficult to understand. This new policy asks for an easier to understand
 food label that features a simplified, rating system in addition to the
 current food label.
 
     "Incorporating a simplified rating system to the nutritional label
 could provide consumers with a better understanding of the product's
 nutritional value," said AMA Board Member William Dolan, M.D. "A rating
 system may also encourage manufacturers to increase the nutritional value
 of food in order to achieve a better rating."
 
     OPPOSITION TO ADDITION OF FLAVORS TO CIGARETTES: In recent years
 tobacco products have been developed in a variety of flavors including
 chocolate, vanilla, mint and fruit. Surveys have shown that children are
 more likely to choose flavored tobacco products. Because these products
 appear to be specifically marketed toward children, today the AMA spoke out
 in support of state legislation that would prohibit the sale or
 distribution of flavored tobacco products.
 
     "Research shows that the earlier a person begins smoking the more
 likely he or she will become addicted to tobacco products and will continue
 to smoke throughout his or her lifetime," said AMA Board Member William
 Dolan, M.D. "We all know the dangers of smoking and by prohibiting the sale
 of flavored tobacco products targeted toward children, we may be able to
 keep the younger generation tobacco free."
 
     BANNING THE SALE OF TOBACCO PRODUCTS AND/OR BYPRODUCTS IN RETAIL
 OUTLETS HOUSING STORE-BASED HEALTH CLINICS: Store-based clinics are located
 in pharmacy and large retail chain stores, very often these facilities also
 sell tobacco products. Because the use of tobacco products leads to health
 problems, many believe the sale of these products in a facility that
 provides health care is counterproductive. Today the AMA voted to support
 efforts to ban the sale of tobacco products and/or byproducts in retail
 outlets housing store-based health clinics.
 
     "It's ridiculous for stores that house health clinics to sell tobacco
 products," said AMA Board Member William Dolan, M.D. "To keep the objective
 of getting and keeping patients healthy, the sale of tobacco products must
 be banned from any health care facility."
 
     PERSONAL MEDICATION SUPPLY IN TIMES OF DISASTER: Earthquakes,
 hurricanes and floods have headlined recent news reports. This new policy
 supports allowing all patients with chronic medical conditions to maintain
 an emergency reserve of prescription medications. It also encourages
 patients to carry a list of current medications and the prescribing
 physician's contact information with them to ensure continuity of care in
 the event of a disaster or other emergency.
 
     "There are more than 125 million Americans living with chronic
 illnesses who rely on medication," said AMA Board Member Steven Stack, M.D.
 "Disasters can happen at any time, and ensuring that patients with chronic
 conditions have access to needed medications may help minimize the
 uncertainty, confusion and health risks following a disaster."
 
     ELDER MISTREATMENT: Many physicians have encountered older patients
 they suspect may be mistreated, yet there is little guidance to help them
 in their care of these individuals. A set of nine policy recommendations
 have been adopted for better clinical care and increased education and
 research in the area of elder mistreatment. Among the recommendations is
 the development of curriculum at the residency level on how to recognize
 elder mistreatment, as well legislation that promotes clinical, research,
 and educational programs in the prevention, detection, treatment, and
 intervention of elder abuse.
 
     "Elder mistreatment cuts across class, race, and gender lines and
 occurs in both urban and rural areas," said AMA Board Member Steven Stack,
 M.D. "Creating more guidance for physicians, residents and medical students
 on how to recognize elder mistreatment and what to do about it is a vital
 step in protecting our society's more vulnerable population."
 
 
 

SOURCE American Medical Association
    CHICAGO, June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Medical
 Association (AMA), the nation's largest physician organization, voted today
 at its Annual Meeting to adopt the following new public health policies.
 
     APPROPRIATE SUPPLEMENTATION OF VITAMIN D: The current Reference Intake
 Values for Vitamin D were established by the Food and Nutrition Board in
 1997. Current research suggests that the Upper Limits for adults is likely
 overly conservative. Today the AMA called on the FDA to re-examine the
 current Daily Reference Intake Value for Vitamin D in light of new
 scientific findings.
 
     "The health benefits of Vitamin D are plentiful, such as strong bones
 and a reduced risk of breast cancer and cardiovascular disease," said AMA
 Board Member Steven Stack, M.D. "It's time to take a good look at the
 current daily recommended level of Vitamin D and ensure that Americans know
 the appropriate levels so they can reap the full health benefits."
 
     RATING SYSTEM FOR PROCESSED FOODS: Nutritional information can be
 difficult to understand. This new policy asks for an easier to understand
 food label that features a simplified, rating system in addition to the
 current food label.
 
     "Incorporating a simplified rating system to the nutritional label
 could provide consumers with a better understanding of the product's
 nutritional value," said AMA Board Member William Dolan, M.D. "A rating
 system may also encourage manufacturers to increase the nutritional value
 of food in order to achieve a better rating."
 
     OPPOSITION TO ADDITION OF FLAVORS TO CIGARETTES: In recent years
 tobacco products have been developed in a variety of flavors including
 chocolate, vanilla, mint and fruit. Surveys have shown that children are
 more likely to choose flavored tobacco products. Because these products
 appear to be specifically marketed toward children, today the AMA spoke out
 in support of state legislation that would prohibit the sale or
 distribution of flavored tobacco products.
 
     "Research shows that the earlier a person begins smoking the more
 likely he or she will become addicted to tobacco products and will continue
 to smoke throughout his or her lifetime," said AMA Board Member William
 Dolan, M.D. "We all know the dangers of smoking and by prohibiting the sale
 of flavored tobacco products targeted toward children, we may be able to
 keep the younger generation tobacco free."
 
     BANNING THE SALE OF TOBACCO PRODUCTS AND/OR BYPRODUCTS IN RETAIL
 OUTLETS HOUSING STORE-BASED HEALTH CLINICS: Store-based clinics are located
 in pharmacy and large retail chain stores, very often these facilities also
 sell tobacco products. Because the use of tobacco products leads to health
 problems, many believe the sale of these products in a facility that
 provides health care is counterproductive. Today the AMA voted to support
 efforts to ban the sale of tobacco products and/or byproducts in retail
 outlets housing store-based health clinics.
 
     "It's ridiculous for stores that house health clinics to sell tobacco
 products," said AMA Board Member William Dolan, M.D. "To keep the objective
 of getting and keeping patients healthy, the sale of tobacco products must
 be banned from any health care facility."
 
     PERSONAL MEDICATION SUPPLY IN TIMES OF DISASTER: Earthquakes,
 hurricanes and floods have headlined recent news reports. This new policy
 supports allowing all patients with chronic medical conditions to maintain
 an emergency reserve of prescription medications. It also encourages
 patients to carry a list of current medications and the prescribing
 physician's contact information with them to ensure continuity of care in
 the event of a disaster or other emergency.
 
     "There are more than 125 million Americans living with chronic
 illnesses who rely on medication," said AMA Board Member Steven Stack, M.D.
 "Disasters can happen at any time, and ensuring that patients with chronic
 conditions have access to needed medications may help minimize the
 uncertainty, confusion and health risks following a disaster."
 
     ELDER MISTREATMENT: Many physicians have encountered older patients
 they suspect may be mistreated, yet there is little guidance to help them
 in their care of these individuals. A set of nine policy recommendations
 have been adopted for better clinical care and increased education and
 research in the area of elder mistreatment. Among the recommendations is
 the development of curriculum at the residency level on how to recognize
 elder mistreatment, as well legislation that promotes clinical, research,
 and educational programs in the prevention, detection, treatment, and
 intervention of elder abuse.
 
     "Elder mistreatment cuts across class, race, and gender lines and
 occurs in both urban and rural areas," said AMA Board Member Steven Stack,
 M.D. "Creating more guidance for physicians, residents and medical students
 on how to recognize elder mistreatment and what to do about it is a vital
 step in protecting our society's more vulnerable population."
 
 
 SOURCE American Medical Association