Wednesday, October 29, 2014

URSP Student Richard Peyton Researches Injuries among early adolescents in Oman

The world’s population is living longer than ever before. Because of that, ensuring the health of our youngest populations is vital. If we can guarantee that a country’s population is healthy while young, they will be able to enjoy a more fulfilling life as they age. The Middle East is rife with conflict, and as such ensuring the health of their young is imperative to building a safer Middle East for tomorrow. Studying injuries in Oman will allow me to correlate data from a high income country, and through future research, investigate whether interventions used can be applied to low- and middle- income countries in the Middle East. This area shares a rich and storied past. Most of the countries in this area share very similar social and spiritual backgrounds, which could allow for easy policy application across the region.

Working on health issues in the Middle East presents particular challenges because of access. Without the ability to reach certain populations, it is necessary to sample similar populations and use the data for research. My long-term goal is to work in maternal and child health, concentrating on issues in the Middle East. Because of the lack of information available, I will need to correlate information for related communities to supplement my research. Having the opportunity from George Mason to do intensive research has helped me understand the intricacies of data analysis.

My research entails poring over data collected through the Global School-based student health survey (GSHS). Using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS), I re-coded the collected data and ran statistical models in an effort to analyze and discover trends. Through this research, I have been able to carefully represent how the youth of Oman understand and discuss injures. Over the past week, I was able to finish coding all of my data and began creating tables that represent a story of how, why, and when young people in Oman are injured. Initially, my plan was to solely investigate whether students were injured and whether those injuries were caused by certain at-risk behaviors. However, after further analysis, I realized that there was a better story to tell. Through looking at the student’s exposure to certain behaviors, I found a way to figure out the likelihood of a student’s chance of being injured, if other behaviors presented.