Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

N.C., Maryland Schools to Create Health Disparities Research Centers

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

N.C., Maryland Schools to Create Health Disparities Research Centers

Article excerpt

CHAPEL HILL, N.C.

Researchers from three North Carolina universities have received grants totaling $1.5 million from the National Institute of Nursing Research to create a Center for Innovation in Health Disparities Research.

The National Institutes of Health agency funded three related grants to support the new center, which will begin operation this fall with offices and directors at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, N.C. Central University and Winston-Salem State University.

The center's goal is to develop nurse researchers who will generate the knowledge to deliver culturally competent care to a diverse and rapidly changing U.S. population.

"This grant will allow the universities to collectively research and collaborate on strategies for advancing the quality of health care while reducing health disparities among patients from diverse cultures," says Dr. Sylvia Flack, dean of Winston-Salem State's School of Health Sciences and center director.

Disparity, both in the availability and quality of patient care and among care providers, is a major concern in the health-care field. Research that explores health within the context of culture is more urgently needed now than ever, center researchers said.

They cite statistics from the Center for Health Information and Statistics showing that Latinos are more than 3.2 times as likely and Blacks are more than 10 times as likely to die from AIDS than Whites in North Carolina. In addition, they said, North Carolina's Blacks are more than two times as likely to die of diabetes while its Mexican-American adults are two to three times more likely to acquire the disease than the state's Whites. Homicide rates reflect health disparities within the state as well: Blacks are more than four times as likely and Latinos are nearly five times as likely to die due to homicide compared with Whites.

"Health care is not the same for all segments of the population in the U. …

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