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Prevention Research Centers Program; researcher-community partnerships for high-impact results
  • Published Date:
    June 2012
  • Source:
    Encyclopedia of primary prevention and health promotion New York: Springer Science+Business Media [in press] 2nd ed.
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Prevention Research Centers Program; researcher-community partnerships for high-impact results
Details:
  • Corporate Authors:
    National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (U.S.), Division of Population Health.
  • Description:
    The Prevention Research Centers (PRC) Program, administered and funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is a network of academic, community, and diverse public health partners that conducts research aimed at reducing the leading causes of death and disability. The researchers are based at schools of medicine and public health across the country; in 2011, 37 academic centers were funded. Each PRC focuses on an area of expertise (e.g., controlling obesity, preventing cancer, or enabling healthy aging). The centers analyze the effectiveness of public health policies, and produce interventions, training programs, dissemination approaches, and other strategies that align with national and global initiatives to improve public health (Ammerman, Harris, Brownson, Tovar-Aguilar, & PRC Steering Committee, 2011). Each PRC's research is tailored to specific communities comprising largely underserved populations, such as Hispanics, older Americans, or rural residents, for whom the burden of chronic disease is greater than for the United States as a whole. The PRCs partner with members of the community that their research is intended to benefit; these partnerships give a voice to vulnerable populations not often heard in prevention research. Community members help choose research topics and assist in the research process, ensuring that real- world conditions are taken into consideration and thereby improving the contextual quality of the research. These collaborations increase the likelihood that successful research results will be appropriate for and used by the community. Other partners, including community-based organizations, health care systems, health advocacy groups, local and state health departments, and the business community, help in disseminating research results and effective programs by facilitating changes in policies, systems, and environments. These partnerships enable the results of the community research to spread well beyond the original study population. The PRC model is useful in targeting not only chronic disease but other public health problems as well, including immunization, infectious diseases such as HIV and sexually transmitted diseases, unintentional injury, and environmental health risks.

    Includes bibliographical references (p. 16-19).

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