Texas Southern University (TSU) has a long history of implementing community engagement outreach efforts addressing health disparities through established partnerships and collaborations with healthcare systems, Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), and community-based organizations (CBOs). However, these efforts are siloed among faculty, staff, and student organizations thus depriving us and most importantly the community, of the unique opportunity to leverage the strengths of all of our CBOs, FQHCs, and healthcare system collaborators to effectively identify and address the health-related concerns of the Greater Houston Community (GHC) Underrepresented Minorities (URMs) and increase URM research awareness and participation. We propose to develop a Community Engagement Core (CEC) within the Center for Biomedical Minority Health Research (CBMHR) that will leverage TSU?s many longstanding partnerships and collaborations with CBOs, healthcare systems, and FQHCs as well as its unique relationship with the URM community. The CEC will develop innovative programs that will integrate existing yet siloed community engagement efforts across TSU. We will identify the health-related concerns of GHC URMs through surveys conducted by our healthcare systems, FQHC, and CBO partners as well as community individuals and CBO partners? feedback. We will address health concerns through health education seminars (topics based on health-related concerns of GHC URMs) and also provide guidance for navigating the vast healthcare infrastructure (including available financial assistance programs). Clinical research education forums aimed at building trust and reducing barriers to participation in clinical trials among GHC URMs will be implemented in collaboration with our healthcare system partners in the Texas Medical Center. We will also host research outcomes conferences to promote the outcomes of TSU?s biomedical research endeavors in lay-language to facilitate the awareness of research findings among the GHC URMs. Relevant information will be obtained through the concurrent development of databases that will exist as an information ?hub? for community resources consisting of up-to-date comprehensive lists of all community-engagement outreaches and activities at TSU and our CBO partners as well as comprehensive lists of community organizations and partners such as FQHCs, Healthcare systems, Charity Clinics, Specialty Service Centers, Multi-service Community Centers, governmental and non- governmental organizations, profit and non-profit organizations, as well as school districts serving the GHC URM. We will use various social and mass media outlets to ensure awareness of CEC?s activity among the GHC. The goals of CEC align with the mission, vision, and values of TSU with regards to collaboration, partnership, community and engagement. Overall, we are convinced that the CEC will be very impactful in bridging the health disparity gaps for URMs in GHC.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD)
Specialized Center--Cooperative Agreements (U54)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMD1)
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Texas Southern University
United States
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