Publications by authors named "Richard C Dicker"

4 Publications

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Building Global Epidemiology and Response Capacity with Field Epidemiology Training Programs.

Emerg Infect Dis 2017 12;23(13)

More than ever, competent field epidemiologists are needed worldwide. As known, new, and resurgent communicable diseases increase their global impact, the International Health Regulations and the Global Health Security Agenda call for sufficient field epidemiologic capacity in every country to rapidly detect, respond to, and contain public health emergencies, thereby ensuring global health security. To build this capacity, for >35 years the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has worked with countries around the globe to develop Field Epidemiology Training Programs (FETPs). FETP trainees conduct surveillance activities and outbreak investigations in service to ministry of health programs to prevent and control infectious diseases of global health importance such as polio, cholera, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, malaria, and emerging zoonotic infectious diseases. FETP graduates often rise to positions of leadership to direct such programs. By training competent epidemiologists to manage public health events locally and support public health systems nationally, health security is enhanced globally.
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December 2017

Case studies in applied epidemiology.

Richard C Dicker

Pan Afr Med J 2017 28;27(Suppl 1). Epub 2017 May 28.

Workforce and Institute Development Branch, Division of Global Health Protection, Center for Global Health, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, US.

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February 2018

Underimmunization in Chicago children who dropped out of WIC.

Am J Prev Med 2004 Jan;26(1):29-33

Epidemiology Program Office, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Background: The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) serves a large proportion of Chicago infants, but some discontinue participation before age 1 year. To determine if children who remained active at WIC immunization-linked sites after their first birthday were more likely to be immunized by ages 19 and 25 months than those who dropped out, a retrospective cohort study was conducted.

Methods: Four Chicago WIC sites that used monthly voucher pick-up were chosen. Children born from July 1, 1997 to September 30, 1997 who attended these sites were eligible (N=1142). The cohort was divided into two groups: (1) active group (46%), who had a WIC visit on or after their first birthday; and (2) inactive group (54%), who had their last WIC visit before their first birthday. Children were enrolled through home visits.

Results: The records for 200 children were analyzed. By age 19 months, 65 (84%) of 77 active children had received one dose of measles-mumps-rubella vaccine (MMR), compared to 82 (67%) of 123 inactive children (risk ratio [RR]=1.3; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.1- 1.5). By age 25 months, 64 (83%) active children had received four doses of diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine (DTP), one MMR, and three doses of Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine (Hib), compared with 64 (52%) inactive children (RR=1.6; 95% CI, 1.3-2.0).

Conclusions: In this cohort, children active in WIC after their first birthday were more likely to be immunized by ages 19 and 25 months, compared with those who were no longer active. Chicago children who drop out of WIC may represent those at highest risk for underimmunization and may require special strategies to improve coverage.
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January 2004

Assessing preferences for prevention versus treatment using willingness to pay.

Med Decis Making 2002 Sep-Oct;22(5 Suppl):S92-101

Harvard University School of Public Health, USA.

Background: Rising health care costs and limited resources necessitate trade-offs between resources allocated toward prevention and those toward treatment. Information from opinion polls suggests citizens favor spending a higher proportion of all health care dollars on prevention rather than treatment.

Objectives: To assess the policy implications of willingness to pay (WTP) for use in cost-benefit analysis (CBA) as a method for capturing individual preferences for prevention and treatment in the context of resource allocation decisions.

Methods: The authors recruited a random sample of 1456 US residents age 18 years and greater by telephone using random-digit dialing. The survey was designed as a 3-stage (phone-mail-phone) process and was conducted between December 1998 and March 1999. For all persons completing the survey (N = 1104), the authors 1st collected respondents' opinions about the costs and effectiveness of prevention versus treatment programs in general. Half of respondents were then asked to state their WTP for a hypothetical prevention scenario and half were asked to state their WTP for a hypothetical treatment scenario. Both scenarios were specific to the same health context and included an identical reduction in mortality risk.

Results: WTP for treatment was significantly greater than WTP for prevention, $665 and $223, respectively. Prior opinions on the relative effectiveness afforded by preventive and treatment interventions moderately influenced the WTP estimates for persons randomized to either scenario. Prior opinions on costs had no significant effect on WTP estimates for either scenario. WTP significantly increased with age and household income in the full sample but was not significantly affected by gender or educational attainment.

Conclusions: The aggregated WTP responses from the prevention and treatment scenarios presented in our study would imply that treatment is more strongly preferred by society than prevention when the health context is the same and benefits of each are held constant. A better understanding is needed of the discrepancy between citizens' stated preferences for prevention (e.g., through polling) and our findings that they were willing to pay substantially more for treatment than for prevention.
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January 2003