3 UW-Madison HELI Alumni Receive 2019 CTSA Pilot Awards!

This year, the UW Institute for Clinical and Translational Science (ICTR) Pilot Awards program distributed $1.3 million dollars for 26 awards, including two Clinical & Community Outcomes Research (CCOR) Pilot Grant Awards, and a Collaborative Health Equity Research (CHER) Pilot Grant Award to HELI Alumni!

Olayinka Shiyanbola, PhD, (HELI 2014), Maria Mora Pinzon, MD, (HELI 2018), and Farah Kaiksow, MD, (HELI 2019) received pilot awards for their projects. Brief summaries of each project are below.

Read the ICTR announcement here.


Clinical & Community Outcomes Research Pilot Grant Awards

Partnering with Peers in the Community to Improve Diabetes Medication Adherence for African Americans

Olayinka Shiyanbola, PhD, UW School of Pharmacy

Academic Collaborators: Earlise Ward, UW School of Nursing; Jonas Joo-Young Lee, UW School of Medicine and Public Health (SMPH), Lisa Sharp, University of Illinois – Chicago

UW Program Partners: Wisconsin Network for Research Support

Community Collaborators: NewBridge Senior Coalition, Second Harvest Food Bank

Approximately 356,000 adults in Wisconsin are diagnosed with diabetes, the seventh leading cause of death in the state, incurring $5.5 billion annually in healthcare costs. The burden of diabetes is higher among African Americans in Wisconsin; hospitalization rates for diabetes complications such as stroke and amputations are four times higher for African Americans than whites. The most important self-management behavior for improving diabetes outcomes is medication adherence; poor medication adherence leads to 125,000 deaths annually. Prior studies by this PI identified facilitators and barriers to adherence which informed a co-designed, peer-led intervention for African Americans with diabetes. This study aims to use a community engaged design to pilot the intervention, assessing the feasibility of gathering pre/post outcomes including culturally-informed diabetes-health beliefs, self-efficacy, patient activation, medication adherence (using surveys), and A1c, and further refine the intervention via feedback from an advisory board comprised of the Peer Ambassadors.. Successful completion of this pilot will provide critical data to inform an R01 grant for a large trial of the intervention’s impact.


Steppin’ for Balance – A falls risk reduction program

PIs: Maria Mora Pinzon, MD; Jane Mahoney, MD, UW School of Medicine & Public Health

Academic Collaborators: Kristy Hallisy; Ronald Gangnon, UW SMPH

UW Program Partners: Community Academic Aging Research Network

Community Collaborators: Safe Communities of Dane County

In Wisconsin, the overall age-adjusted death rate for falls among older adults is double the national average, with higher disparity seen among African Americans seniors, who have a rate 4-times larger than the African American national average. Evidence-based falls prevention programs are becoming more available across Wisconsin, but their reach among African American Seniors has been poor for many reasons, including the lack of cultural acceptability. Chicago Style Steppin is a popular dance program, well-received in African American senior programs, with potential to improve balance and mobility.

This pilot study will offer a modified version of Chicago Style Steppin’ with up to 40 seniors from African

Americans communities in Dane County with aims to (1) characterize the key elements of the program and co-design an instruction manual, (2) assess feasibility of the research design and data collection strategies, and (3) estimate the effects of the program as a function of adherence to the program. 


Collaborative Health Equity Research Pilot Grant Award

Investigating the Impact of Incarceration on Cancer: A Novel Collaboration Between the Institute for Research on Poverty and the UW School of Medicine and Public Health

PI: Farah Kaiksow, MD, UW School of Medicine & Public Health

Academic Collaborators: Noelle LoConte, Amy Trentham-Dietz, UW SMPH; Lawrence Berger, UW Letters & Sciences

UW Program Partners: Institute for Research on Poverty

Community Collaborators: Nehemiah Center for Urban Leadership Development

Wisconsin is the worst state in the country for black men when it comes to incarceration, with black male incarceration rates nearly twice the national average. Little is known about the health of formerly incarcerated Wisconsinites; preliminary data from other locations suggest that these patients, regardless of race/ethnicity or insurance status, face poorer outcomes than those who have never been incarcerated. This pilot will link a unique database from the Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP) to the UW Health tumor registry. The IRP database contains information on incarceration history, while the UW Health database has information on every patient diagnosed with and/or treated for cancer at UW Health, including tumor characteristics, first-course treatment received, and survival. Using a retrospective cohort study design, we will compare cancer patients with and without incarceration histories using a number of descriptive variables. With input from community stakeholders, the ultimate goal is to identify specific areas of intervention to reduce the burden of cancer in this population.Successful completion of this project will result in a rich data source that can be used for future research focused on identifying high-yield areas of intervention to reduce disparities faced by formerly incarcerated patients.

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