AMERICAN INDIAN RESEARCH CENTER FOR HEALTH X OVERALL PLAN ABSTRACT Project Summary Well designed and implemented health research that is respectful of American Indian culture can provide solutions to help eliminate the disparities in health experienced by Arizona Indians. The overall goals of the AIRCH X is to: (1) develop a cadre of highly trained AIAN biomedical and health researchers who are sensitive to the culture and specific concerns of Arizona AIAN communities, and who can bring the benefits of academic research to these communities to reduce health disparities. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (ITCA) is a Tribal collaboration uniquely qualified to administer AIRCH based on an active membership of 21 Arizona tribes. The AIRCH partnership is between the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (ITCA) and the Native American Research and Training Center (NARTC) at the University of Arizona (UA) that has been in place since 2000. The Principal Investigator (PI) Maria Dadgar, MBA, Executive Director of ITCA is authorized to represent and reinforce the commitments of ITCA and to oversee the operations of the Center. Teshia G. Arambula Solomon, PhD, Director of NARTC is also PI, serving on behalf of the Native American Research and Training Center (NARTC), at the University of Arizona (UA), as the research-intensive partner. The AIRCH X will accomplish its goal through several projects to address community identified health priorities including: ? An assessment of place of residence as a risk factor/protective factor for alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drug consumption and dependency among Native Americans. ? Development of an Inter Tribal research review program and policies to ensure cultural safety of individuals, Tribal communities and sacred materials and methods. ? Research training programs that support AIAN students at the undergraduate level and AIAN junior AIAN investigators to advance their careers to build a cadre of AIAN scientists in the biomedical sciences. Expected outcomes include: 1) new knowledge and information to support objective AIAN substance abuse policy, 2) 40 first-year AIAN students successfully progressing toward a degree in Health, Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math; 3) 10 junior AIAN investigators successfully advancing in their careers; 4) established research review policies to ensure cultural safety of individuals, Tribal communities and sacred materials and processes. Relevance: The American Indian Research Center for Health (AIRCH) will conduct community-relevant research to reduce health disparities among AIAN in Arizona, to protect and promote further research among 21 tribes in Arizona and to increase workforce diversity in biomedical research. AIRCH will promote a cadre of AIAN scientists interested in health equity issues prioritized by tribal communities and integrate social and cultural assets to promote academic persistence.
The AIRCH X program seeks to reduce health disparities among American Indians and Alaska Natives living in Arizona, support the research partnership between the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona and its 21 member Tribes and the Native American Research and Training Center at the University of Arizona and to increase the pool of trained American Indian and Alaska Native scientists and research professionals. There are a number of complex factors contributing to the health and disease and the health disparities experienced by the AIAN population when compared with other Americans. Strengthening the partnerships between these two agencies can improve the quality of research done to benefit Arizona Tribes.