Public Release: 

Society for Prevention Research meeting May 30-June 1, Washington, D.C.

Society for Prevention Research

Save the Date Memo to Health and Health Policy Reporters

May 16, 2007

TO: Health and Health Policy Writers

FROM: Prabhu Ponkshe, Society for Prevention Research, 703-918-4860

SUBJECT: New prevention research findings on Suicide, School Suspension, Obesity, Drinking & Driving, and Other Major Topics to be presented at annual meeting of Society for Prevention Research, Washington, DC, May 30-June 1, 2007. The 15th Annual Meeting of the Society for Prevention Research will be held at the Hyatt Regency, 400 New Jersey Avenue NW, Washington, DC, May 30-June 1, 2007. Some of the major topics that will be featured at this meeting will be:

  • The Garrett Lee Smith Memorial Act was signed into law on October 21, 2004 to prevent suicide and suicide attempts in adolescents and young adults. Scientists will look at the evidence available for screening as an approach to suicide prevention.
  • Three million students are suspended from school for behavioral problems as a form of punishment. But there is a lack of clear evidence on effectiveness of suspension as a deterrent.
  • Obesity rates are disproportionately high among African-American and Latino children, as early as age 6. School-based prevention is one way to deal with obesity, but researchers are learning more about how family involvement can also affect obesity rates.
  • Prevention research shows that kids who have difficulty paying attention and who have negative attitudes in earlier grades maybe at higher risks for arrests later. Data on more than 8,000 students shows how interventions can help these kids during elementary school years.
  • A national effort surveying nighttime and daytime motorists will be launched in the fall of 2007 to determine alcohol and drug use by motorists. This is the first time the survey will take advantage of oral fluid analysis to collect information on drug use. Details of how the survey will be conducted will be explained at the SPR meeting.
  • Drinking and driving is a major problem among teenagers. Can parents make a difference in preventing drunk driving" Can prevention programs aimed at parents help"
  • An ongoing population trial aimed at strengthening parenting and reducing risk for child maltreatment involving 18 counties each between 50,000 and 175,000 in population has seen promising results relative to reported child maltreatment rates and out-of-home placements. All stories from the SPR annual meeting will be released for publication on May 30, 2007, the first day of the meeting. Reporters interested in examining the full program can contact me at 703-918-4860.

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