249436 Diabetes Epidemic: The role of Community Health Workers in mobilizing a community and to take collective action

Monday, October 31, 2011

Steven Rothschild, MD , Departments of Family Medicine and Preventive Medicine, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL
Jaime Delgado, BA , Diabetes Intervention, Sinai Urban Health Institute, Chicago, IL
Steve Whitman, PHD , Sinai Urban Health Institute, Sinai Health System, Chicago, IL
José Lopez, PhD (ABD) , Puerto Rican Cultural Center, Chicago, IL
Emma Lozano , Executive Director, Familia Latina Unida/Sin Fronteras, Chicago, IL
Juana Ballesteros, RN BSN MPH , The Greater Humboldt Park Community of Wellness, Chicago, IL
A recent survey documented a diabetes rate of 21% among Puerto Rican adults in one Chicago neighborhood, three times the national prevalence. This data was presented to the community and served as a call for action, leading to the development of Block-by-Block: The Greater Humboldt Park Campaign against Diabetes, or “BxB”.

The aim of BxB is to reduce the impact of type 2 diabetes on 13,000 adults in a low-income, multi-ethnic 72-block area of Chicago. The CBPR study, led by a community steering committee and two PIs (one from a community organization, one from an academic medical center), seeks to identify persons with diabetes in the community through neighborhood surveys and screenings and to then provide those individuals with resources to support diabetes self-management.

Bilingual CHWs from the community, called “Diabetes Block Captains”, provide the BxB intervention. They engage in many of the historical roles of CHWs: conducting screenings, community education, providing one-on-one self-management coaching. In addition, the CHWs are challenging the social determinants of health in Humboldt Park through community organizing, raising public awareness, and engaging restaurants, grocery stores, pharmacies, churches, community centers, parks and other elements of the social infrastructure as venues to support behavior change. As these efforts by the CHWs have been recognized locally, hospitals and medical providers have sought to participate and support BxB activities. The efforts of the CHWs have thus begun to catalyze a broad-based grass-roots movement within this urban neighborhood to combat the growing problem of diabetes.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Describe different roles CHWs can play in mobilizing a grass-roots movement in public health List components of an effective multi-level campaign to reduce the impact of diabetes in an urban community

Keywords: Community Involvement, Community-Based Health Promotion

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Principal Investigator of the Block-by-Block Campaign discussed in this presentation
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.