Cancer is now the leading cause of death in the state of North Carolina. In 2006, over 17,000 North Carolinians died from cancer. African Americans carry a disproportionate burden of cancer disease, with higher mortality rates than Caucasians from prostate, colorectal, and breast cancer. The Carolina Community Network Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities (CCN II) will leverage the myriad successes of CCN I and continue to promote the community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach in adhering to the established mission of reducing cancer health disparities among adult African Americans in North Carolina. CCN II will be based at the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and will provide a three-pronged research infrastructure that includes: Outreach, Research, and Training. CCN II will continue to work with faith-based and secular community groups in two regional areas in North Carolina that comprise 13 urban and rural counties. CCN II program activities will be undertaken through the coordinating efforts of the Administrative Core, the partnership strengthening activities of the Community Outreach Program and the junior faculty development activities of the Training Program to form a comprehensive, interactive, community-academic research center. Specifically, 1) the Administrative core will provide scientific leadership and direction to all three of CCN M's programs, cultivating cohesion and synergy to meet Center goals;2) the Community Outreach Program will provide needs assessments, culturally sensitive cancer education, and targeted health promotion and dissemination efforts in concert with existing Community Partners;3) the Training Program will identify, instruct and support the development of early-stage investigators interested in developing their own health disparities research programs using the CBPR approach;and 4) the Research Program will support the conduct of an evidence-based intervention study to increase colorectal cancer screening rates among African Americans using data generated from CCN I preliminary research and existing partnerships.
Racial/ethnic minorities carry a greater burden of cancer than other population groups. Although there are many beneficial biomedical and behavioral services available for cancer prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment, many health disparities continue because these benefits are not shared by all. The CCN II will address cancer disparities among African Americans by working with community members to increase knowledge, access and use of services in North Carolina.
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