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Program launched to address disparities.

The Transdisciplinary Collaborative Centers (TCC) for Health Disparities Research on Chronic Disease Prevention Program is being launched by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD), part of the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md.This program is designed to implement more-robust ecological approaches to address chronic diseases among racial and ethnic minority groups, underserved rural populations, people of less privileged socioeconomic status, along with groups subject to discrimination who have poorer health outcomes often attributed to being socially disadvantaged.

Research efforts will focus on development, implementation, and dissemination of community-based, multilevel interventions to combat chronic diseases, such as heart ailments, cancer, and diabetes.

Where people live, work, and play has significant impact on the development and progress of chronic diseases and conditions. The TCC program looks beyond individual behavioral risk factors to engage the family, community, health-care systems, and policy impacts that also affect people's health.

"Multilevel interventions that take into account complex interactions between individuals and their environments can better address determinants of health and enhance chronic disease prevention and health promotion for local communities," says NIMHD Director Eliseo J. Perez-Stable. "Studies in these centers will add to our knowledge of what works in health disparities populations, thus advancing knowledge towards our nation's health."

Heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems. Many of these conditions disproportionately affect health disparity populations and, in advanced stages, can lead to significant limitations in activities of daily living. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Ga., seven of the top 10 causes of death in 2015 were chronic diseases:

* Prevalence rates of obesity in African-American and Latino adults are significantly higher than among white adults.

* Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S., yet more adults living below the poverty level or with less than a high school education are current cigarette smokers compared to those who live at or above the poverty level.

* Hypertension, a major risk factor of cardiovascular and chronic kidney disease, is more prevalent or not as well controlled in African-American and Latino adults compared to whites.

* Women from poor and low- and middle-income households are less likely to receive a screening mammogram compared with women from high-income households.

Encouraging researchers to use a transdisciplinary, collaborative, and systems approach to address disparities in chronic disease prevention, the program is emphasizing prevention and early detection and treatment. Studies have shown that early treatment improves health outcomes in many conditions, implying that early detection is important to combating disease progression. However, people from health disparity populations generally have lower detection rates, leading to later-stage diagnosis and treatment, which negatively can impact disease outcomes.

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Title Annotation:Minority Health; Transdisciplinary Collaborative Centers (TCC) for Health Disparities Research on Chronic Disease Prevention Program
Publication:USA Today (Magazine)
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2016
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