Efforts to understand and overcome health disparities are compromised by the underrepresentation of minorities in relevant areas of research.? Factors affecting minority participation include a history of discrimination, lack of trust, power differences, limited access to healthcare and research opportunities, participant burden, and lack of perceived relevance.Underrepresentation greatly diminishes the relevance of research findings in at risk populations bearing a disproportionate burden of disease and premature mortality. A growing body of evidence indicates that minority research participation can be increased by intentional structural support of community engagement (CE) such as establishing community advisory boards (CABs), involving minority investigators, and hiring community health workers. Key elements of CE include: cultivating long-term community-university partnerships that extend beyond the funding periods of individual research projects;eliciting community input to identify interests and priorities;and integrating community perspectives in methodologically rigorous research reflecting the complementary strengths of community and university partners.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD)
Exploratory Grants (P20)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMD1-RN)
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University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Little Rock
United States
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Yeary, Karen Hye-cheon Kim; Cornell, Carol E; Turner, Jerome et al. (2011) Feasibility of an evidence-based weight loss intervention for a faith-based, rural, African American population. Prev Chronic Dis 8:A146

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