203319 Growing our own: Community participation in identifying local health needs for urban American Indians

Monday, November 9, 2009

Angela Farnsworth, MPH , Health Promotion Sciences, University of Arizona Zuckerman College of Public Health, Tucson, AZ
Simona J. Damon, BS , Tucson Indian Center, Tucson, AZ
Terilene Glasses, BS , Tucson Indian Center, Tucson, AZ
LeeAnn Lopez , Tucson Indian Center, Tucson, AZ
Cynthia Nahsonhoya , Tucson Indian Center, Tucson, AZ
Kimberly Benally-Hood , Tucson Indian Center, Tucson, AZ
Kathryn Foster , Tucson Indian Center, Tucson, AZ
Christina Oré de Boehm, MPH , Health Promotion Sciences, University of Arizona Zuckerman College of Public Health, Tucson, AZ
Norma Gray, PhD , Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
Community participation in research provides an opportunity to generate meaningful and relevant knowledge in health and social science. The NIH National Center for Minority Health and Health Disparities funded an approach in support of this effort, using principles of community-based participatory research to conduct a community health needs assessment among urban American Indians of Tucson. A partnership was developed between the Tucson Indian Center, local Native community members and the University of Arizona Zuckerman College of Public Health to meet these ends. Methods used gather information on local perceptions of family health and illness will be presented, and will highlight the use of a creative expression, Wellness Tree activity as a means to actively involve community in the identification of a relevant health disparity and contributing factors. Response data (n=315) was collected, analyzed and categorized by members of the research partnership, working as the Seeds of Wellness Advisory Board. Results from the Wellness Trees yielded 28 categories, and indicate family unity, good nutrition, teaching good morals/values and physical activity as the top protective factors. Conversely, substance abuse, poor diet, domestic violence and sedentary activities were top risk factors. Findings from the needs assessment provided evidence for the identification of diabetes as a primary and pertinent health disparity for urban Indian families in Tucson. Results also present evidence for contributing factors to the disparity, which helped guide the development of an appropriate target intervention. A description of the partnership, assessment approach, subsequent findings, and implications for research will be discussed.

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe methods used to gather information from community members. 2. Discuss identified health disparity within the context of the urban Indian experience 3. Identify partner members who developed and implemented the needs assessment.

Keywords: Health Disparities, Needs Assessment

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a PhD in clinical psychology and over 10 years experience conducting prevention interventions in Native American communities. I am also the PI on this project and have been involved in every aspect of the development and implementation.
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.