Author: shellypollard

Tackling Health Disparities Among Latinos in the United States

By Mariana Sanchez, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work,
Florida International University
Research Associate, Center for Research on U.S. Latino HIV/AIDS and Drug Abuse

By Mario De La Rosa, Ph.D.
Professor, Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work,
Florida International University
Director, Center for Research on U.S. Latino HIV/AIDS and Drug Abuse

Photo of Dr. Mariana Sanchez

Dr. Mariana Sanchez

Phot of Dr. Mario De La Rosa

Dr. Mario De La Rosa

National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15–October 15) provides an opportunity to reflect on how the histories, cultures, and contributions of Latino Americans have enriched our nation and society. As the largest ethnic minority group in the United States, numbering nearly 58 million, Latinos are the principal driver of demographic growth, accounting for half of the national population growth since 2000.1 The U.S. Latino population continues to not only grow but diversifyWhile Mexicans remain the largest U.S. Latino immigrant group, shifts in immigration patterns over the past decade indicate steep increases in Latino immigrants of Caribbean and Central and South American origin arriving in the U.S.1

Continue reading “Tackling Health Disparities Among Latinos in the United States”

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Three New Research Areas Added to NIMHD’s Language Access Portal

By Kelli Carrington, M.A.
Director, Office of Communications and Public Liaison
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Are you looking for health information in languages other than English for your local community or patient population? As the communications director for NIMHD, I’m excited to share the latest health topic release on our Language Access Portal (LAP).

Our expanded content includes dementia, with specific resources from the National Institute on Aging, mental health, with resources from the National Institute on Mental Health, and substance abuse, with information from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Resources from the National Library of Medicine are provided as well.

Continue reading “Three New Research Areas Added to NIMHD’s Language Access Portal”

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Guest Blog Post: Interdisciplinary Association for Population Health Science

By Christine Bachrach, Ph.D.
IAPHS Executive Director and Research Professor in the Department of Sociology and the Maryland Population Research Center at the University of Maryland, College Park

Recently, the Interdisciplinary Association for Population Health Science (IAPHS) published a blog post summarizing the NIMHD inaugural Director’s Seminar Series presentation by Ana Diez Roux, M.D., Ph.D., Dean and Distinguished University Professor of Epidemiology in the Dornsife School of Public Health at Drexel University. The lecture was held on December 7, 2017 and the IAPHS post provides another chance to learn from this very informative talk about “Challenges and Opportunities in Health Disparities Research.” Continue reading “Guest Blog Post: Interdisciplinary Association for Population Health Science”

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Congratulations to the 2018 Health Disparities Research Institute Scholars

Photo of Dr. Richard Palmer

Dr. Richard Palmer

By Richard Palmer, Dr.P.H., J.D.
Health Scientist Administrator

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) held its annual Health Disparities Research Institute (HDRI) from July 23–27, 2018 in Bethesda, Maryland. As with previous years, the selection process was very competitive with nearly 300 applications received from early stage investigators. Fifty scholars from 24 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and one U.S. territory were accepted to the Institute. Selected scholars shared one common attribute—a strong commitment and desire to build a research career focused on minority health and health disparities research.

Continue reading “Congratulations to the 2018 Health Disparities Research Institute Scholars”

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Healthy Mind Initiative Addresses Mental Health of Asian American and Pacific Islander Youth

By Victoria Chau, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

By Lieutenant Commander Kelly Leong
United States Public Health Service

By David J. Robles, B.A.
Graduate Intern, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

                              
From left to right: Dr. Victoria Chau, SAMHSA,  LCDR Kelly Leong , United States Public Health Service  and Mr. David J. Robles, SAMHSA

July is National Minority Mental Health Awareness (NMMHA) Month—a practical time to highlight the importance of mental health for everyone. In a recent NIMHD Insights blog post, Dr. Xinzhi Zhang raised serious concerns about mental health awareness among Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) youth and families. Suicide deaths have catapulted to the top as the leading cause of death for AAPI adolescents 12-19 years old in 2016.1 AAPI youth are the only racial/ethnic group for whom suicide is the leading cause of death, yet this is rarely discussed. The challenge of raising mental health awareness among AAPI communities is multifaceted but includes two key barriers: language issues and lack of culturally sensitive educators.

Continue reading “Healthy Mind Initiative Addresses Mental Health of Asian American and Pacific Islander Youth”

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Asthma, A Common But Controllable Illness

By Roselyn Hicks, M.D.
Visiting Scholar, Division of Scientific Programs                                                                                    National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities                           

Tree Pollen

Everything is abloomspring has finally arrived. Pollen is everywhere, and for many of us, so is allergen-induced  asthma.

Asthma, one of the most common childhood illnesses and a leading cause of work and school absences, continues to cause symptoms for nearly 25 million Americans. As a board-certified allergist and immunologist, my most frequent patients were individuals with this adult and pediatric inflammatory, chronic lung disease of the airways. This inflammation causes repeated episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and nighttime or early morning coughing. The prevalence of asthma, with marked disparities between various populations, continues to increase within the United States. The greatest rising trend is in adult women, non-Hispanic Black children, and those individuals living in poverty—especially boys.2,5 Medical management has improved in recent years, but asthma is still related to more than 3,000 deaths per year.2 What can we learn from the extensive information available about asthma? Continue reading “Asthma, A Common But Controllable Illness”

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The Journey to Healthy Minds for Healthy Youth

Image of NIMHD Program Officer Dr. Xinzhi Zhang

Dr. Xinzhi Zhang

By Xinzhi Zhang, M.D., Ph.D.
Program Director, Division of Scientific Programs
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Too many stories point to the troubled minds and mental struggles of our youth with the tragic event in Parkland, Florida being one of the latest. Even more saddening, these children’s cries for help are often misunderstood or ignored.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death for children between the ages of 10–24 years old, accounting for 17.6% of deaths in this age group 1 The American Academy of Pediatrics recently updated their guidelines to include universal screening for adolescent depression (youth 12 years of age and older).2 According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, one in eight youth ages 12–17 years old has had a  major depressive episode in the past year, with 70% of them having severe impairment.3,4 Continue reading “The Journey to Healthy Minds for Healthy Youth”

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Partnerships, An Important Factor in Advancing Health Equity

By Eliseo J. Pérez-Stable, M.D.
Director, National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Director, NIMHDEach year in April, the Office of Minority Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) leads our sister HHS agencies in commemorating National Minority Health Month. This year’s theme, “Partnering for Health Equity,” is a sustainable message which we not only recognize this month but also put into practice all year long through our research, training, and outreach programs and activities.

Over the last two and a half years, I have been leading this Institute in research to improve minority health and reduce health disparities in the U.S., as well as help guide other NIH Institutes and Centers on these issues. Our country is often described as a melting pot—representing people from all over the world. However, our research does not reflect the culture. We are continually trying to raise the bar.

Continue reading “Partnerships, An Important Factor in Advancing Health Equity”

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Guest Blog Post: Improving Diversity in Basic Biomedical Research

By Jon R. Lorsch, Ph.D.
Director, National Institute of General Medical Sciences

This is the first in a series of guest NIMHD Insights blog posts where NIH Institute and Center (IC) Directors highlight initiatives, resources and funding opportunities relevant to minority health and health disparities research and training at their Institutes. The goal of this guest blog series is to link NIMHD stakeholders to minority health and health disparities-related information and opportunities across NIH.

The inaugural post is from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS). With a $2.6 billion budget, NIGMS supports basic research that increases understanding of biological processes and lays the foundation for advances in disease diagnosis, treatment and prevention.  

Improving Diversity in Basic Biomedical Research

Photo of Director, National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Dr. Jon R. Lorsch  Director, NIGMS

Fostering a diverse and inclusive future workforce has long been a key priority for NIGMS. The Institute strongly believes that incorporating a full range of perspectives, skills, and experiences will benefit the biomedical research enterprise—and our society as a whole. This standpoint is one of the factors that attracted me to the NIGMS Director’s position.

During my tenure at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, one of my proudest achievements was launching a summer research program for Baltimore-area high school students. Many of the students came from groups underrepresented in the biomedical sciences. Most had never been exposed to a career in science. Continue reading “Guest Blog Post: Improving Diversity in Basic Biomedical Research”

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“Insights” on Simulation Modeling and Systems Science, New Research Funding Opportunity

By Xinzhi Zhang, M.D., Ph.D.
Program Director, Division of Scientific Programs
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

There are many contributing factors to health, such as race, ethnicity, sex, sexual identity, age, disability, socioeconomic status, and geographic location. To help close health gaps, the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) spearheads scientific research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to improve minority health and reduce health disparities.

NIMHD is leading a new Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA): Simulation Modeling and Systems Science (SMSS) to Address Health Disparities. To learn more about SMSS and this new funding opportunity, NIMHD Program Officer Dr. Xinzhi Zhang addresses a few questions for the Insights blog. Continue reading ““Insights” on Simulation Modeling and Systems Science, New Research Funding Opportunity”

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