Reducing the burden of chronic disease and eliminating health disparities in high-risk minority communities in Milwaukee

Full Project Name:COME ALIVE MILWAUKEE: Community empowerment and lifestyle intervention for ethnic minoritiesPrincipal Investigator:Leonard E. Egede, MD, MS, Center for Advancing Population ScienceAward Amount:$2,800,000
Award Date
Project Duration:72 months

Project Description Narrative:

The U.S. Insitute of Medicine defined health care disparities as "differences in the quality of care received by minorities and non-minorities who have equal access to care." Based on this definition, when differences are based on the systemic issues within a health care system, environmental factors, or discrimination, the difference is defined as a disparity.

In Milwaukee, the most racially and ethnically diverse county in Wisconsin, and a majority-minority city with about 53% of residents having an ethnic minority background, disparities of poverty, education, income, employment, and health are significant.

Through this award, project investigators aim to reduce the burden of chronic disease and health disparities in 10 high-risk minority communities through a coordinated effort that will include direct patient intervention and augmentation of existing infrastructure, while supporting efforts to grow the next generation of change agents in the community.

Project Updates:

  • Catalogued existing interventions, engagement programs, dissemination, and implementation efforts in diabetes and chronic kidney disease, using the WHO Framework for Action on the Social Determinants of health to identify gaps. Identified gaps in accessing care, cultural tailoring of existing interventions, and incorporation of stress, coping, and the built environment into interventions, as well as the need to understand the effect of socioeconomic factors on health outcomes in African-Americans living in the inner city
  • Completed interviews with community and MCW stakeholders to gether feedback on gaps, priorities for action, and recommendations on partnerships
  • Developed and recieved approval for protocols for conducting community focus groups. Hosted 16 community focus groups and engaged 32 participants who live with chronic illness in an additional photovoice focus group. An additional set of 38 community stakeholders were interviewed for feedback and perspectives on partnerships that may be important for future progress
  • Developed and received approval for a prospective longitudinal epidemiological cohort of adults, and initiatied cohort recruitment
  • Recruited additional expertise in biostatistics, community health work, research program coordination, data analysis and interpretation, and health disparities
  • Began recruitment and training for the next generation of change agents in the community, training five high school and undergraduate students, and initiated discussions around the development of a new pipeline program for high school students

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