In January 2019, the Center for Health Disparities Innovation and Studies (CHDIS) officially opened. Its mission is to reduce health disparities in underserved populations and communities through research, services, and academic partnerships. The CHDIS uses an integrative approach to explore the causes of existing health disparities, and to develop strategies to reduce these health disparities with evidence-based, and community-driven interventions to improve health outcomes among the targeted population.
Dr. Tsu-Yin Wu, the Director of CHDIS, and Professor in the School of Nursing, and her colleagues feel privileged to have the opportunity to serve underserved minority groups to promote health and well-being. “In the face of such complex health care issues, we are pressed to move beyond boundaries toward a more integrated and comprehensive approach. The CHDIS is comprised of researchers and faculty members from various disciplines; together we are working with community advocates, public health authorities, and governmental offices. In the process, we listen to the voices from individuals and families regarding the challenges and barriers that they encounter.” To date, the CHDIS has received three grants to improve conditions of the environment and health status for Bangladeshi Americans.
The Lead Prevention Project, funded by Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, targets high-risk Asian Americans in the Hamtramck/Detroit area by engaging organizations and agencies to design, plan and implement a culturally-appropriate lead poisoning prevention program. Dr. Tsu-Yin Wu and Dr. Lydia McBurrows (School of Nursing) are the co-principal investigators on this project.
The Safe Routes to School Active Transportation Programs, funded by Michigan Fitness Foundation and Michigan Department of Transportation, is led by Dr. Xining Yang (Department of Geography and Geology) and Dr. Tsu-Yin Wu. This project aims to implement several programs in Hamtramck working with the Hamtramck Public Schools to promote walking and biking as healthy lifestyles using geospatial technology and citizen science.
Faculty associates from the CHDIS also received an Interprofessional Education (IPE) grant from CHHS to develop and implement a joint project between the CHDIS, the School of Health Promotion and Human Performance, and the School of Nursing. The overall goal of the project is to develop a one-day holistic and culturally-tailored wellness program for Bangladeshi seniors living in Hamtramck. Dr. Meriam Caboral-Stevens (School of Nursing), Dr. Anthony Moreno (School of Health Promotion and Human Performance), and Dr. Tsu-Yin Wu are leading this project.
The CHDIS provides opportunities for faculty, and students, with hands-on experiences in health disparity research, and to serve as a resource for minority communities in Michigan to disseminate health information and implement disease prevention activities. The College of Health and Human Services is proud of the Center’s accomplishments.