It’s Story Time!

When was the last time you were read to? Second grade? Well now you have an opportunity to enjoy the comforting cadences of various authors reading their own works by attending Story Hour at the Morrison Library. Story Hour is a monthly reading series featuring prominent local prose writers hosted by English department faculty Vikram Chandra and Melanie Abrams.

Come see Tom Barbash, the author of the new book of stories Stay Up With Me on December 4th, 2014 in the Morrison Library from 5-6pm. His previous books include the award-winning novels The Last Good Chance and On Top of the World: Cantor Fitzgerald, Howard Lutnick, and 9/11, which was a New York Times bestseller. His stories and articles have also been published and performed on National Public Radio.

Image of the Morrison Library
Photo by Alan Nyiri, courtesy of the Atkinson Photographic Archive

A Side of Poetry with Your Lunch

Nothing to do for your lunch hour? Come visit the Morrison Library (located in the Doe Library) for its aptly named poetry series Lunch Poems. Lunch Poems is a recurring event that takes place on the first Thursday of the month from 12:10-12:50pm. Under the direction of Professor Robert Hass, Lunch Poems is a chance for the U.C. Berkeley community to listen to quality poetry as well as learn a thing or two about writing poetry.

The next event is on December 4th, 2014 featuring Gillian Conoley. From the Lunch Poems site:

Gillian Conoley was born in Austin Texas, where, on its rural outskirts, her father and mother owned and operated a radio station. She is the author of seven collections of poetry, including Peace (Omnidawn, 2014), The Plot Genie (2014), Profane Halo (2005), Lovers in the Used World (2001), and Tall Stranger (1991), a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her work has received the Jerome J. Shestack Poetry Prize, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, and a Fund for Poetry Award. Conoley’s work is widely anthologized, most recently in W. W. Norton’s Postmodern American Poetry. Her translations of Henri Michaux’s A Thousand Times Broken: Three Books are appearing in English for the first time and will be published by City Lights in Fall 2014. Editor and founder of Volt magazine, she is Professor and Poet-in-Residence at Sonoma State University.

Picture of the Morrison Library

Photo by Steve McConnell / Public Affairs.

Richmond Instruction: PubMed Advanced Hands-On

Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 10am-11:30am
Computer Training Room P-1246
850 Marina Bay Parkway, Building P, Richmond, CA


RSVP by Monday, December 8th to Michael Sholinbeck at or (510) 642-2510.
Please obtain your supervisor’s approval before you RSVP.


NON-BUILDING P OCCUPANTS: Please make sure to register so your name will be on the class participant list given to the Building P Security Desk for entry into Building P.

PLEASE NOTE: This class is limited to 16 participants. A waiting list will be created, if necessary, for an additional class.

Supervisors: Please encourage your staff to attend if appropriate.

It is highly recommended, but not required, that you have already taken the PubMed Basics class, or already have a basic understanding of and ability to search PubMed. This class will not cover what was covered in the PubMed Basics class.

* Want to learn more about finding and using Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)?

* Want to know how to effectively use MeSH subheadings?

* Want to learn how to use “evidence-based medicine” filters, useful for both clinical medicine and epidemiology?

* Want to learn about using PubMed’s Topic-Specific Queries, such as Comparative Effectiveness, Healthy People 2020, Health Disparities, and more?

* Need to know if a specific journal is indexed in PubMed?

* Interested in other advanced features of PubMed?

If you’ve answered “yes” to any of these questions, then please come to the Sheldon Margen Public Health Library’s PubMed Advanced Hands-On class!

Topics covered will include:
1. More about MeSH
2. Using MeSH Subheadings effectively
3. Clinical Queries
4. Topic-Specific Queries
5. Journals in NCBI Databases
6. Other Advanced PubMed features

These training sessions are free to CDPH staff. A certificate of completion will be available for those who attend the class.

A schedule of other upcoming training sessions is available.

Sacramento Instruction: Google, Google Scholar, Google Books, and WorldCat

Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 1:30-2:30pm
Enterprise Computer Training Room 72.167
1500 Capitol Ave, Sacramento
(Turn left as you enter the building and
head through the large wooden doors. ETR
will be straight ahead)


RSVP by Tuesday, December 16th to Michael Sholinbeck at or (510) 642-2510.
Please obtain your supervisor’s approval before you RSVP.


Please note: This class is limited to 12 participants. A waiting list will be created, if necessary, for a possible additional class.

Some seats may be available on the day of the class so if you don’t register in advance, you can just show up to see if there is availability.

Supervisors: Please encourage your staff to attend if appropriate.

Do you know:

* That you can limit a search in Google to a particular domain (eg, .gov or .org) or even to a particular website (eg,

* What is and is not included in Google search products?

* You can import citations directly from Google Scholar into EndNote?

* You can perform cited reference searching in Google Scholar?

* You can create a profile in Google Scholar, and save citations there?

* Google Books allows you to read or preview books online?

* WorldCat lets you search for books and more in over 10,000 libraries?

If you’ve answered “No” to any of these questions, then please come to the Sheldon Margen Public Health Google, Google Scholar, Google Books, WorldCat class!

Topics covered will include:
1. Google search products: what?s in them?
2. Search tips
3. Setting preferences
4. Creating a profile in Google Scholar
5. Cited reference searching
6. Shortcomings of using Google for research
7. How Google Books and WorldCat link to each other

Class Objective:
After this class, you will be able to perform more effective Internet searches, and will better understand the results that you retrieve. In addition, this class will provide you with helpful tips to efficiently search for articles and books.

These training sessions are free to CDPH staff. A certificate of completion will be available for those who attend the class.

A schedule of other upcoming training sessions is available at the library training page.

Holiday Hours for Your Research Needs

Although the Public Health Library will be closed to the public from December 20 – Jan 4, we are open for CDPH services on December 22, 23, 26, 29, and 30 as well as Jan 2 from 9am to 5pm. If you wish to visit the library on any of these days, please let us know beforehand by calling 510-642-2510 so we can open the door for you and make sure that a librarian will be here to assist you.

Please plan ahead and anticipate your project needs, especially if you will be using our Document Delivery service.

Thank you for continuing to use our valuable library services. We encourage you to let your new and existing colleagues know about our services and resources if they do not already use them.

Happy Holidays to you from all of us at the Public Health Library!

Professional Development: International Women’s Health & Human Rights course

Are you interested in learning more about issues related to women’s health and related human rights factors? Then you might want to consider the free online course International Women’s Health & Human Rights. It will begin on January 22 and end on March 27.

Offered through Stanford OpenEdX, it will provide an overview of women’s health and human rights, beginning in infancy and childhood, then moving through adolescence, reproductive years and aging. It will focus on critical issues that may mean life or death to a woman, including discrimination; poverty; unequal access to education, food, paid work and health care; and various forms of violence.

Participants who successfully complete the required elements of the course will receive a personalized Statement of Accomplishment, however online courses do not include university credit.

Looking for an authoritative guide to help in selecting safer chemical alternatives?

The National Research Council’s new publication, A Framework to Guide Selection of Chemical Alternatives might help. This new report reviews selected existing frameworks, describes the committee’s framework, and presents recommendations for implementation. The committee’s framework assesses chemicals in terms of human health and ecological risks.

Audiences and users that would benefit from use of this report include regulatory agencies at the federal, state, local, and international level; industry, including small, medium, and large businesses; organizations encouraging the adoption of safer chemicals; and developers of chemicals and chemical processes.

Finding Ebola articles in PubMed

As you might expect, there are a number of quality articles on Ebola in PubMed. You might be wondering how best to locate them! The National Library of Medicine (NLM) suggests using the term < ebola* > as the best way to find all citations indexed with any of the Ebola MeSH headings as well as citations that have not yet been indexed but have that root string as a text word. You can find more tips as well as a link to NLM resources in the NLM Technical Bulletin article: Search Hint: Searching for Ebola in MEDLINE/PubMed.

There are over 2,400 citations that come up when you do the suggested search. If you want to read any that you are unable to get the full text for, please use our document delivery service! The best way to request articles or books is to use the web portal.

In case you have forgotten how to get to the Public Health Library’s web portal, we have made a short tutorial. It will guide you from the CDPH Intranet to the web portal.

Don’t have a web portal account and want one? Send an e-mail to Sarah at with your name, unit, phone/fax numbers, and work e-mail address. Your username and password will be sent to you.

“Captchas” come to our online forms

Have you noticed Captchas on some of our forms and wondered why they have suddenly appeared? Captchas are the little pictures of number/letter combinations that you need to enter before submitting a form. Captchas have been added because UC Berkeley servers have been under repeated attack by form submission bots.

The purpose of these malicious attacks is to disable our servers and perhaps gain entry to them. What we see are hundreds, or even thousands, of form submissions all occurring within a very short time period (perhaps only a few minutes). At the very least, it is quite a task to verify and delete all these emails.

Our I.T. folks are now requiring Captchas to be added to our web forms, such as our Document Delivery and Literature Search request forms. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

CDPH in the News, December 2014

CDPH in the News

Calif. Hospitals Reported 6,282 Adverse Events Over Four Years
from California Healthline

In the last four fiscal years, California hospitals have reported more than 6,000 adverse events to the California Department of Public Health, but the number of actual adverse events could be higher, according to an NBC Bay Area investigative report.

State inadequately investigates nursing home complaints, audit finds
from Los Angeles Times

The California Department of Public Health has failed to effectively investigate nursing home complaints, a state audit released Thursday found, with a total of 11,000 unresolved complaints in its system. The department, which is responsible for monitoring more than 2,500 nursing homes, classified more than 40% of these complaints and incidents as having caused or being likely to cause harm to a resident. Yet the state auditor’s office found that the average number of days these complaints were open ranged from 14 to 1,042 days.

Fargo facility could handle Ebola-related waste
from WTHI TV

The Fargo operator of a medical waste incinerator would only accept Ebola-contaminated waste from other states after careful consideration, and it doesn’t currently have any plans to do so, company officials said. Healthcare Environmental Services Inc. has received a few calls from nervous people since it appeared on a California Department of Public Health list of potential destinations for any Ebola-related waste, said Chad Wold, the company’s director.

Study: Trauma Follows Children Into Adulthood, Threat to Public Health in CA
from New American Media

Past experiences of childhood trauma are common among California adults, and those experiences correlate with harmful behaviors and chronic disease at a level that constitutes a "public health crisis," according to a new study. The report used four years’ worth of data from the California Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, a telephone survey on health-related behaviors conducted every year by the California Department of Public Health and led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The total sample size was nearly 28,000 individuals. The report by the Center for Youth Wellness (CYW), a health organization that serves children and families in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point district, demonstrates that "the effects of early adversity on lifetime health are astounding," according to CYW founder and CEO Nadine Burke Harris.

Newborn Testing Delays Prove Dangerous at Local Hospitals
from NBC 7 San Diego

When Rhonda Connolly had her second son, Casey, she and her husband brought him back to their Del Mar home thinking everything was fine. She was breastfeeding her seemingly healthy baby, not knowing every meal was putting protein into his body that turned into brain damage-causing toxins. Three days after Casey?s birth, his pediatrician called saying his newborn screening test results were abnormal. Their son tested positive for Phenylketonuria or PKU, a rare condition in which a baby is born without the ability to properly break down an amino acid called phenylalanine. If a person with PKU has too much protein, it builds up toxins that can cause permanent brain damage.
The Connolly family received the newborn screening results on time, and it was imperative they did. Doctors were able to treat Casey immediately.
However, in some hospitals around the country and in San Diego County, samples are taking longer than the recommended three to five days to reach a laboratory.
Federal health advisors and newborn screening advocates say the dangerous delays put babies in danger and their families at risk of having to deal with expensive, lifelong medical bills.
The California New Born Screening Program screens more than 98 percent of babies born in the state, according to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). It tests for 31 conditions.