The Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness Partners with Morehouse School of Medicine in Improving Community Health Project

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Partnership assesses efforts to reduce chronic diseases, promote healthier lifestyles, reduce health disparities and control health care spending in Atlanta

Morehouse School of Medicine and The Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness Partners in Community Health Project

“We are clear that cardiovascular risk and cancer disparities are connected to social determinants of health and the policies, systems and environments that may support or counter healthy lifestyles,” said Dr. Tabia Henry Akintobi, Principal Investigator

Morehouse School of Medicine Prevention Research Center (MSM PRC) and the Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness (FCDHW) have partnered to evaluate the county’s Partnership for Improving Community Health (PICH) project, established to lead Atlanta public health efforts to reduce chronic diseases, promote healthier lifestyles, reduce health disparities and control health care spending. The PICH is a part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) $50.3 million commitment to 39 local health agencies, funded through a cooperative agreement by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“We are clear that cardiovascular risk and cancer disparities are connected to social determinants of health and the policies, systems and environments that may support or counter healthy lifestyles,” said Dr. Tabia Henry Akintobi, Principal Investigator and Center Director, MSM PRC.

For a three year period (2014-2017), Fulton County’s PICH award will annually fund $2.97 million to focus on promoting smoke-free policies, increasing access to tobacco-free environments and increasing access to physical activity. It is during this period that they will invest $900,000 in MSM PRC evaluation of their PICH initiatives. These evaluation efforts will be led by Tabia Henry Akintobi, PhD, MPH, Latrice Rollins, PhD, MSW and a team of evaluation staff.

“Our collaboration with Fulton County will provide the evidence-base necessary to document outcomes of this groundbreaking work. Evaluation of this program will adopt a community-based approach to assess strategies designed to reduce tobacco use and exposure and physical inactivity,” says Dr. Henry Akintobi.

National PICH awardees will include those designed to address risk factors for tobacco use, poor nutrition, and physical inactivity all in which are major causes of death and disability in the United States. Awardees will serve in one of three different areas: 13 large cities/urban counties with populations of 500, 000 or more; 20 small cities/counties with populations between 50,000-499,999; and six American Indian tribes/tribal organizations.

Established in 1998, MSM PRC is a part of a twenty-six academic research centers network funded by CDC to achieve local and national health objectives focused on gaining knowledge about the best methodologies for solving the nation’s obstinate health problems.

For additional information about evaluation of this program contact the MSM PRC office at 404-752-1022 or prcinfo(at)msm(dot)edu. For more information about the FCDHW’s PICH initiative, contact Dr. Nazeera Dawood at 404-613-1685 or via email at Nazeera.Dawood(at)fultoncountyga(dot)gov.

About Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM)
Founded in 1975, MSM is among the nation's leading educators of primary care physicians and was recognized by Annals of Internal Medicine in 2011 as the top institution in the first study of U.S. medical schools for our social mission based on our production of primary care physicians, training of underrepresented minority doctors and placement of doctors practicing in underserved communities. Our faculty and alumni are noted for excellence in teaching, research and public policy, as well as exceptional patient care.

Morehouse School of Medicine is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award doctoral and master's degrees. For more information, please visit http://www.msm.edu.

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Ronna Charles Nu'Man
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