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U of Maryland study: Partnership may help address cancer, health disparities
Date:1/29/2014

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, January 29, 2014 Robust partnerships between rural community health education centers and academic health care institutions can make substantial strides toward addressing race-, income- and geographically-based health disparities in underserved communities by empowering both the community and leading University institutions, according to newly published research from the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

University of Maryland Medical Researcher Claudia R. Baquet, MD, MPH, and her team examined 17 years of a partnership between the University of Maryland School of Medicine and a rural health education non-profit on Maryland's Eastern Shore, the Eastern Shore Area Health Education Center (ESAHEC). The research team found that rural communities were more willing to participate in clinical trials and biospecimen donations when long-term partnerships were established between University Medical Centers in cooperation with local community health educational centers. The paper was published in the most recent issue of Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education and Action, a journal published by Johns Hopkins University Press.

"Maryland's Eastern Shore has a rich history of ethnic, racial and cultural diversity in their communities," says Dr. Baquet, professor and associate dean for policy and planning and director of the Center for Health Disparities at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. "The Eastern Shore represents populations with unique health disparities that are amenable to targeted interventions, " she says.

But like many rural regions in the state, the Eastern shore has unique needs when it comes to health care.

"Its residents have higher rates of cancer and chronic disease than those who live in urban areas," she says. Furthermore, the area lacks public transportation systems to take patients to and from health care. It also has a growing number o
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Contact: Christopher Hardwick
chardwick@som.umaryland.edu
410-706-5260
University of Maryland Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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