Wayne State University Division of Research

Wayne State University and Karmanos Cancer Institute to host two-day symposium focused on advancing health equity and the impact of COVID-19

Newswise — DETROIT – Wayne State University and the Karmanos Cancer Institute will host the “Community-Engaged Research Symposium to Advance Health Equity: The Impact of Coronavirus Now and in the Future,” on Dec. 1 and 2. The virtual symposium is free and open to the public; registration is required and can be completed online.

 “This is our third annual symposium, and we are honored to take on the challenge of adapting it to the pandemic,” said Rhonda Dailey, M.D., assistant professor of family medicine and public health sciences, and scientific director of the Office of Community Engaged Research at Wayne State University. “The virtual platform is a convenient way for academicians, community organizations and community members involved in community-based research to present their hard-earned work related to COVID-19. We hope that attendees will use the symposium to form new, lasting connections and partnerships.”

The symposium will create a space for community stakeholders and academic researchers to network, share research priorities and advance community-engaged science focused on the impact of the coronavirus now and for the future. This meeting is supported, in part, by Wayne State University’s Office of the Vice President for Research, the Karmanos Cancer Institute’s Office of Cancer Health Equity and Community Engagement, and Wayne State’s Office of Community Engaged Research and the Center for Urban Responses to Environmental Stressors.

Community-academic research partnerships are more important than ever, according to Hayley Thompson, Ph.D., professor of oncology in the Wayne State School of Medicine and associate center director for community outreach and engagement at Karmanos Cancer Institute.

“Just like cancer, heart disease and a host of other conditions, the burden of COVID-19 is greater in communities of color, in under-resourced areas and among groups who are marginalized in other ways,” said Thompson. “If we want to generate data and knowledge that can make a difference, meaningful collaboration between these groups and academic researchers is essential. This symposium is one step toward real collaboration.”

The second day of the symposium will feature Christie Drew, Ph.D., chief of the Program Analysis Branch at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences of the National Institutes of Health. Drew will present the logic model concept using predesigned case studies or examples identified by participants’ responses provided at the time when they register. After providing the logic model overview, participants will work in small virtual breakout groups to develop activities, outputs and impacts to achieve a goal.

“This symposium is a window for attendees to peer into a diverse group of projects to see how partnerships and interactions have evolved and persisted through the pandemic,” said Carrie Leach, Ph.D., research associate at the Institute of Gerontology and the Center for Urban Responses to Environmental Stressors at Wayne State University. “To continue the metaphor, it’s also a door, which we hope is a gateway for more community-driven work.”

The full program is available online.

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About Wayne State University: Wayne State University is one of the nation’s pre-eminent public research universities in an urban setting. Through its multidisciplinary approach to research and education, and its ongoing collaboration with government, industry and other institutions, the university seeks to enhance economic growth and improve the quality of life in the city of Detroit, state of Michigan and throughout the world. For more information about research at Wayne State University, visit research.wayne.edu.

About the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute: Karmanos Cancer Institute is a leader in transformative cancer care, research and education through courage, commitment and compassion. Our vision is a world free of cancer. As part of McLaren Health Care, Karmanos is the largest provider of cancer care and research in the state of Michigan. For more than 75 years, our administrative and research headquarters, along with our premier specialty cancer hospital, have been located in downtown Detroit. Our 15 network sites throughout the state deliver market-leading cancer care and clinical trials conveniently to the communities where many of our patients live. Karmanos is recognized by the National Cancer Institute as one of the best cancer centers in the nation. Our academic partnership with the Wayne State University School of Medicine provides the framework for cancer research and education – defining new standards of care and improving survivorship. For more information, call 1-800-KARMANOS (800-527-6266) or visit www.karmanos.org.




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