Hispanic Health Disparities and Obesity Under Spotlight in $4.1m study
The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) has received a $4.1 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study and reduce health disparities and obesity among Hispanics.
The five-year grant will establish the Center for the Advancement of Minority Health and Health Disparities Research at UTEP. The grant will also help recruit and train faculty and will be used to disseminate research results to the community.
The center is a partnership between UTEP's College of Health Sciences and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, School of Public Health.
"This will help us link with a senior institution that will provide expert consultation as we begin to develop our own cadre of experts in the field," said Robert L. Anders, associate dean of the College of Health Sciences and director of the School of Nursing.
"No Better Place" Than El Paso to Study Hispanic Health Disparities and Obesity
Anders said the center will serve as a strong recruiting tool and will provide students an opportunity to work as research assistants in the field.
Because El Paso County's population is 78.2 percent Hispanic, there's no better place to study health disparities, Anders said.
"There's been a lot of research about Hispanics and obesity, diabetes and mental health," he said. " We'll study why the problems are more unique to Hispanics, and how to help eliminate those disparities."
Research will focus on:
• Factors that contribute to lifestyle and health;
• Health by populations, such as the elderly or young children;
• Health care needs, such as providing education and information about Hospice services to the elderly;
• Policy and system changes, such as ensuring more health care providers speak Spanish or are sensitive to cultural differences among patients;
• Maintaining statistics to note trends and determine if progress is being made.
For more on
health disparities and obesity read Latino trend watcher Jaun G Tornoe's
thoughts on the anecdotal and scientific data supporting the link between Hispanics and obesity...
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