180087 Testing a Community-Driven Model to Increase Knowledge and Awareness of Family Health History Among Latinos

Monday, October 27, 2008: 12:30 PM

Alejandra J. Gepp, MA , Institute for Hispanic Health, National Council of la Raza, Washington, DC
James C. O'Leary O'Leary, BS , Genetic Alliance, Washington, DC, DC
Research is needed to develop and test community-based models that reach underserved populations with culturally relevant health information.

Genetic Alliance through a cooperative agreement from the Genetic Services Branch of the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) developed a family health history project, Healthy Choices Through Family Health History Awareness (“the tool”), which enables oral history and folkloric traditions to drive the collection of family health history. The goal is to customize "the tool" to the needs of different communities and evaluate its effectiveness by encouraging the collection of family health history information and behavioral changes.

The National Council of La Raza' Institute for Hispanic Health (NCLR/IHH), in collaboration with Genetic Alliance, has tested "the tool" using NCLR's proven community-based promotores de salud (lay health educators) model. The project was implemented with two of NCLR's affiliated community-based organizations (CBOs) located in Oakland, California and Washington, DC, representing Mexicans and Central Americans.

Using a cultural competency framework, "the tool" was adapted with on-going participation of the CBOs, promotores de salud, and community members. "The tool" was then field tested with trained promotores and community members. In year 3, participating communities will broadly disseminate "the tool" in community events.

NCLR-trained promotores have demonstrated the ability to competently reach their communities and serve as educators, advocates, and liaisons to enhance and extend the health care services that commonly do not reach immigrant Hispanics. NCLR believes this approach is effective in underlining the importance of genetic information and collecting family health history among Latinos.

Learning Objectives:
Outline the essential components of a community-based educational model to reach out to Latinos with information about genetics and family history. Describe methodologies used to customize family health history materials and recruiting methods for health outreach to families.

Keywords: Community Health Promoters, Community-Based Health Promotion

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: The National Counci of la Raza in partnership with Genetic Alliance conducted the testing of the educational materials with two subgroups of the the Latino community.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.