237190 Addressing challenges to dissemination of a tobacco prevention program among Deaf and Hard of Hearing youth: New strategies for diverse settings

Monday, October 31, 2011: 4:30 PM

Barbara A. Berman, PhD , Department of Health Services, Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, UCLA School of Public Health and Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, Los Angeles, CA
Debra S. Guthmann, EdD , Pupil Services, California School for the Deaf, Fremont, Fremont, CA
Catherine Crespi, PhD , Department of Biostatistics, UCLA School of Public Health, Los Angeles, CA
Deaf and Hard of Hearing (D/HH) youth are at risk for tobacco use. Prevention materials and media messages available to hearing youth are often inaccessible and inadequate for this cultural and linguistic minority population. To address this unmet need, we conducted community-based participatory research to develop and test a tailored deaf-friendly anti-tobacco curriculum through a quasi-experimental design involving four schools for the Deaf over a three-year period (n=511-616 students/year, grade 7-12). Follow-up surveys indicated that the curriculum increased perceived tobacco education exposure and significantly affected tobacco-related practices, attitudes and knowledge. The next step is further dissemination of the program. Dissemination poses particular challenges due to the diverse settings available to reach D/HH youth, which include community agencies serving the Deaf community, schools for the Deaf, and diverse mainstream school settings where, increasingly, D/HH youth receive their education in separate classrooms or through individual placements in classrooms of hearing students. Drawing on the experience of educators who participated in the research and others who have adopted the program, we have developed specific recommendations for facilitating program implementation and enhancing the curriculum's value as an educational tool. We will describe the comprehensive evidence-based program, discuss barriers to dissemination, and consider strategies for addressing these challenges. We will also consider ways in which elements of the curriculum can be adapted for use among other minority youth populations where English may be a second language and low literacy and health literacy may be a problem.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
Identify characteristics of a tobacco use prevention curriculum that are called for to address the learning requirements of cultural and linguistic minority populations such as Deaf and Hard of Hearing youth. Compare barriers to program implementation in different school settings, such as schools for the Deaf versus mainstream schools serving Deaf and Hard of Hearing youth. Formulate strategies to facilitate uptake and utilization of a tobacco prevention curriculum in diverse setting that include schools for the Deaf, diverse mainstream settings, and community programs serving the Deaf community. Discuss adaptation of a program designed for one minority community, Deaf and Hard of Hearing youth, to the needs of other low literacy and low health literacy minority communities in which English is a second language.

Keywords: Tobacco, Deaf

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am Principal Investigator of the research on which this presentation is based.
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.