186348 Reducing breast cancer disparities through an academic-community partnership

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Edilma Guevara, DrPH , Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX
Gayle Weaver, PhD , Rehabilitation Services; School of Allied Health Sciences, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX
Sandra Ford, BSN , Liberty County, Texas State Department of Health Services, Dayton, TX
Alexis N. Cordova , Family and Consumer Sciences Liberty County, Liberty, TX
Billy Philips, PhD , Chair: Preventive Medicine & Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX
Despite improvements in cancer survival rates, these improvements are not reflected across all segments of the population. Although breast cancer is effectively screened, mammography use varies widely in rural Texas, thus resulting in advanced stages at diagnosis. Such disparities persist despite state and collaborative efforts for breast cancer prevention and control. While the 2000-2004 average age-adjusted mortality rate in Texas was 24.5 per 100,000 women, the rate for Liberty County was 30.0. Our aim is to better understand these geographical disparities as well as various ethnic and socio-economic disparities. To promote community participation in increasing screening and early detection of breast cancer, the UTMB Community-based Health Improvement Project established an academic-community partnership with the Liberty County Cancer Awareness Network (CAN) coalition. This presentation focuses on the CBPR approach in changing factors that affect breast health access and in empowering an exemplar rural county. Lack of transportation, lack of health care facilities, and limited budget allocations for indigent care were changed in a comprehensive and symbiotic fashion to improve limited health care access in Liberty County. Activities of UTMB-CAN partnership led to a better understanding of how to confront infrastructure challenges that are community priorities and led to the establishment of an advocacy plan and new partnerships. Engagement of local policy makers and key breast cancer organizations allowed us to effect structural change and increase access to breast cancer screening and treatment. This project is supported by the UTMB Center for Population Health and Health Disparities ľNIH grant 5P50CA105631.

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss the usefulness of the CBPR approach in analyzing the factors affecting breast cancer care access. 2. Describe the ways that an academic-community partnership empower and mobilize a rural community to involve policy makers, affect structural change and increase cancer care access

Keywords: Breast Cancer, Rural Communities

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a co-investigator on the research being presented. By profession I have both a nursing degree and a master's and doctorate in public health. My research focuse on breast cancer.
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.