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Innovation | Equity | Collaboration

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Ongoing Projects

ONAC: Organizational Networks, Assets, and Collaborations

The Organizational Networks, Assets, and Collaborations (ONAC) Study is a mixed method study that allows for a longitudinal and community-engaged assessment of organizational assets available for CVD risk reduction, and an in-depth appraisal of influences on organizational collaboration, changes in organizational networks, and how changes in organizational networks are associated with the sustainability of intervention and CVD outcomes.

The ONAC Study collects data at three different time points:

  • Baseline of Heart Matters intervention
  • 12 months-post intervention
  • 18 months-post intervention

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ReEngaging Ethics: Ethical Issues in Engaged Research

Dr. Corbie-Smith, Director for the Center for Health Equity Research, is the lead investigator for Re-engaging Ethics: Ethical Issues in Engaged Research. The project was awarded by the Greenwall Foundation, and aims to create guidelines to support ethical engagement in community engaged research. These guidelines are intended to aid academic and community researchers in the conducting of community engaged research and bioethicists and IRB members guidance of community engaged research.

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MAPSCorps pairs high school youth with science-oriented university students. Working in teams, MAPSCorps youth walk every block of their communities, observing, collecting, cataloguing, and analyzing data about all public-facing businesses and organizations. The original program was developed at the University of Chicago. In partnership with the Chicago team, MAPSCorps NC has been adapted for Edgecombe and Nash counties of North Carolina. Youth mappers will begin by documenting the assets in the city of Rocky Mount. In future years, mapping will expand to include other townships in the Twin Counties.

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Clinical Scholars

Accepting Applications in January 2017

Clinical Scholars is a new national leadership opportunity for clinically active health care providers spanning a range of disciplines – nurses, physicians, pharmacists, physical therapists, dentists, allied health, veterinarians, and many others. Working together in interprofessional teams, participants will engage in intensive learning, mentoring and networking to lead transformative change – centered on health equity – in their communities.

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Project GRACE

Project GRACE is a community-based participatory research (CBPR) collaboration between community members in rural, eastern North Carolina and researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Founded in 2004 by community and academic stakeholders, Project GRACE is guided by the principles of CBPR and a staged approach to partnership development. Project GRACE is overseen by a Steering Committee made up of community members, researchers, and representatives from various organizations and health departments in eastern NC. Since its inception, Project GRACE has developed several prevention interventions and programs to address issues such as HIV, diabetes, and heart disease. Currently, Project GRACE is implementing the Heart Matters intervention.

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Heart Matters

Heart Matters is a research project developed by Project GRACE to reduce heart disease risk among African Americans in Edgecombe and Nash counties. Heart Matters uses a comprehensive lifestyle program to promote a heart healthy lifestyle: physical activity, healthy eating, blood pressure control, weight loss, and smoking cessation. The Heart Matters program was developed based on programs proven to result in weight loss, better fitness, and better blood pressure control.

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Greenwall Foundation

The Greenwall project focuses on the proposed regulations of the Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) and the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to the Common Rule. We address how the federal regulation should be revised to be more community inclusive by acknowledging health inequities and better address the role of underrepresented individuals and communities in research.

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Systematic Review of Community Health Workers

The systematic review of community health workers (CHWs) focuses on CHW training and the role of CHWs in preventing cardiovascular disease (CVD). Key questions include:

  • What is the direct evidence that CHW interventions lead to improved CVD risk factors?
  • Which characteristics of CHW programs (i.e., selection criteria and training criteria) are associated with improved outcomes in the target population and in the CHWs?

This small project began in response to the provisions in the Affordable Care Act, which recognizes the role of CHWs in health promotion and disease prevention and recommends further integration of CHWs in the healthcare system, to support and aid in treating underserved populations.

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