208485 Building capacity in the evaluation of an integrative program to improve knowledge, access to care, and healthy behaviors among underserved African American populations at risk for diabetes and cardiovascular diseases in rural South Carolina: A community-academic partnership

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 1:30 PM

Maria C. Au, MMS, MPH , Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD
Jessica Piezzo, BS, CHES , SharedCare, Inc, SharedCare, Myrtle Beach, SC
Andy Anderson , Cedar Branch Missionary Baptist Church, Loris, SC
Fannie Fonseca-Becker, DrPH, MPH , Department of Health, Behavior and Society, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD
Background: SharedCare, a community-based organization which provides access to care for the uninsured, created an integrative health program with local churches to provide basic diabetic and cardiovascular disease care and educational programs to address the growing medical needs in the rural, underserved populations in Horry County, South Carolina. With funding from the Johnson & Johnson Community HealthCare Program, SharedCare, the Horry County Cedar Branch Community, and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health formed a community-academic partnership to evaluate this integrative community program.

Methods: Using a hands-on, participatory approach, the community and academic partners collaboratively designed and implemented the program evaluation using a conceptual framework of program activities and intended outcomes. Based on this framework, the partners created measures for evaluating program implementation and effectiveness, in addition to building a data management system using Epi Info software.

Results: While the need for quality health care and access to care remains in the rural areas of South Carolina, this integrative approach to program implementation has narrowed the service gap in the targeted population. After one year of collaboration, both SharedCare and the Horry County Cedar Branch Community have developed their in-house capacity to design and conduct evaluations, and gained valuable skills in the analysis and interpretation of the program results.

Conclusion: Partnerships between community-based organizations and academic institutions in integrative health programs provide a unique platform for multiple stakeholders in the community to increase their sustainable in-house capacity for program evaluation and their ability to make evidence-based decisions in program strategies.

Learning Objectives:
At the conclusion of this session the participants will be able to: Describe how a community-academic partnership can improve in-house capacity in program evaluation for an integrative rural faith based program. List three benefits of using a conceptual framework in evaluation training.

Keywords: Evaluation, Community Participation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am currently a second year public health doctoral student specializing in health systems in lower and middle income countries. Prior to receiving a master degree in public health (MPH), I worked as a family practice physician assistant for two and a half years in the underserved Latino population.I am currently serving as a Johnson & Johnson Community Healthcare Scholar for the community-based health program in Loris, South Carolina to build in-house capacity for community organizations in the design and implementation of evaluation plans. I am also involved as a research associate for the M&E component of a multi-country results-based health financing program for the World Bank.
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.