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The Center for Women's Business Research at Harvard University announced that women-owned businesses are growing at double the rate of all small businesses in the United States, about 17 percent vs. 9 percent for male-owned small businesses.

WOMEN AND BUSINESS

Women-Owned Small Businesses Set the Pace

The Center for Women's Business Research at Harvard University announced that women-owned businesses are growing at double the rate of all small businesses in the United States, about 17 percent vs. 9 percent for male-owned small businesses. According to Dr. Myra Hart, chairwoman of the center, women owned a 50 percent larger stake in 10.6 million privately held companies, with $2.46 trillion in sales, employing some 19 million people. Employment at companies owned by women increased 24 percent in seven years, compared to 12 percent for all privately owned companies. The number one state for women-owned businesses was California, followed by Texas, Florida, New York, Illinois, and Ohio.

State Economic Network Creates Strong Connection for U.S. Women Business Owners

In March 2004, the USWCC launched a national network of women's Economic Development Councils. Thousands of women across the United States have stepped up to be part of this important state economic network for women, which is available online. The Economic Development Councils are building a strong state economic network of involved, influential business owners who are ready to leverage their clout nationally. This network is designed to assess the local and national needs of women business owners, report on their status, develop resources, and communicate women's needs to national leaders. For details, go to http://www.uswomenschamber.com/.

Volunteer To Create a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)

Initially, CERT programs were developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to assist communities in taking care of themselves in the aftermath of a major disaster when first responders are overwhelmed or unable to respond because of communication or transportation difficulties. CERT is now being used to augment our nation's bioterrorist response. For more information about CERT, go to http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/CERT/dir.asp.

WOMEN AND ORAL HEALTH

Key Facts About Violence and Abuse for Dentists To Identify

  • One out of four American women report having been raped and/or physically assaulted by a current or former spouse, live-in partner, or date at some time in their life.
  • About 1 million women are stalked each year in the United States.
  • An estimated 4 million American women are physically abused by their spouses or live-in partners each year. About one in every four women seeking care in emergency rooms has injuries resulting from domestic violence.
  • Another estimated 1.9 million American women are physically assaulted each year, many with facial or oral injuries.
  • One out of every six American women has experienced some form of sexual assault or abuse during her lifetime.
  • Women are six times more likely than men to be abused by someone they know, and 10 times more likely to be victims of sexual assault.

For more information, go to http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/pub/ascii/vi.txt. If you suspect violence or abuse based on oral findings, check with your state licensing board for legal reporting requirements unique to your state. For referral of women to state "safe houses" and other resources, go to http://4woman.gov/violence/state.cfm or call your local health department.

New Issue Brief on Oral Health Care Available From the Center on an Aging Society

The Center on an Aging Society has just released the sixth in a series of Issue Briefs on chronic and disabling conditions, "Oral Health Care." The focus of the paper is that access to oral health care is limited, in great part because of inadequate insurance coverage and a limited supply of providers. Substantial oral health disparities among populations of different income levels, ages, and cultures exist. The Brief notes that some community-based efforts to improve oral health have been effective, but these are not widespread. Please note that next year, the American Dental Association has announced plans to focus more of its efforts on access to care.

Here are some key facts from the paper:

  • For most Americans, oral health has improved over the past 50 years, but tooth decay remains the most common chronic disease among children ages 5 to 17. An individual's ability to perform basic activities may be affected by oral health.
  • Many oral disorders and diseases are preventable, yet oral health has not been widely promoted. More attention is needed for prevention of oral disorders and diseases to improve oral health for all Americans.
  • More than 51 million hours of school are lost each year by children due to dental-related illness.
  • Employed adults lose more than 164 million hours of work each year due to oral health problems or dental visits.
  • Tooth decay is five times more common among children than asthma or hay fever.
  • Ninety-four percent of dental care is funded by private sources, mostly private insurance and out-of-pocket spending by consumers, with only 6 percent of dental care financed through federal/state Medicaid programs.
  • Very few states (e.g., Colorado and Washington) allow hygienists to practice independently to meet growing demands for preventive oral care.
  • The relatively small number of dental providers is a major barrier to obtaining dental care.
  • In 2002, annual expenditures for dental services in the United States were $70.3 billion, or 5 percent of total health-care expenditures.

For the entire paper, go to http://ihcrp.georgetown.edu/agingsociety/pubhtml/oralhealth/oralhealth.html.

Elders' Oral Health Summit

The Boston University School of Dental Medicine is hosting an Elders' Oral Health Summit on Sept. 13-14, 2004, in Boston. For more information, go to http://dentalschool.bu.edu/elder-summit/ or contact Carolyn Wehler at (781) 687-2856 or cwehler@bu.edu.

Three New Books for Educating Your Patients About the Importance of a Smile

  • "The Perfect Smile: The Complete Guide to Cosmetic Dentistry," by Dr. James H. Doundoulakis and Warren Strugatch. Healthy Living Books, $15.95. This book discusses cosmetic procedures in easy-to-understand language, from bleaching to veneers and implants.
  • "What to Do for Healthy Teeth," by Dr. Sadie S. Mestman and Dr. Ariella D. Herman. Institute for Healthcare Advancement, $12.95. This book covers a full range of dental procedures and oral health issues, as well as other safety and health issues.
  • "A Brief History of the Smile," by Angus Trumble, $26. Based on a speech to a conference of dentists and cosmetic surgeons, this text from the curator of the Yale Center for British Art focuses on the changing norms for beauty, and includes commentary on different types of smiles through the ages, in classical art and different populations.

WOMEN'S HEALTH

New Study Reports on Efficacy of Aspirin in Preventing Breast Cancer

A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that women who took aspirin seven or more times a week lowered their risk of breast cancer by about a quarter, compared to women who did not take aspirin. These effects were found among women prone to hormone-sensitive tumors by blocking an enzyme needed to make estrogen, which is known to promote tumor growth in the breast.

SOURCE:Terry MB, et al. Association of Frequency and Duration of Aspirin Use and Hormone Receptor Status With Breast Cancer Risk. JAMA May 26, 2004; 291:2433-2440.

KUDOS!

  • to Dr. Helen Gift, the 2004 recipient of the Behavioral Sciences and Health Services Research Award, presented by the International Association for Dental Research. Many of Dr. Gift's publications predated the findings of the Surgeon General's Report on Oral Health, highlighting disparities in access to care by race/ethnicity and gender. Formerly with the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, Dr. Gift is a professor of sociology and organizational systems at Brevard College, N.C.
  • to Dr. Marjorie Jeffcoat for becoming president of the Academy of Osseointegration. Congratulations!
  • to Dr. Gayle Glenn for becoming a board member of the American Association of Orthodontists.

— UPCOMING CONFERENCES —

ADA (American Dental Association) — Sept. 30-Oct. 3, 2004; Orange County Convention Center; Orlando, Fla.; www.ada.org; (312) 440-2500

AOS (American Orthodontic Society) — Oct. 21-24, 2004; Westin Riverwalk; San Antonio, Texas; www.orthodontics.com; (813) 264-6677

GNYDM (Greater New York Dental Meeting) — Nov. 26-Dec. 1, 2004; Jacob K. Javitz Center; New York, N.Y.; www.gnydm.com; (212) 398-6922

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