Disparities programs, protocols and education
Research for detection and analysis of cancer health disparities is the first step in the effort to reduce them. At UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, researchers also have designed and implemented programs specifically to address these disparities, whether they are based on gender, ethnicity, age or socio-economics.
Among our projects and programs:
Be Smart with Body Art spreads word about hepatitis C risk with tattoos and body piercing
Be Smart With Body Art is a multi-media campaign targeting teens and young adults with messages about the risk of exposure to hepatitis C from tattoos and body piercing. The campaign, which includes “5 questions to ask before getting a tattoo or piercing,” was developed by researchers Marlene von Friederichs-Fitzwater at UC Davis and Heather Diaz at Sacramento State University who demonstrated that body art is hugely popular among college students, but that they know little about hepatitis C, which can cause liver cancer.
Increasing mammography rates among American-Indian and Alaska-native women
Mother’s Wisdom Project is a program developed to increase the rate of mammography screening for American-Indian and Alaska-native women, who have disproportionately high death rates from breast cancer. The project is based on research by Marlene von Friederichs-Fitzwater that found that cultural beliefs are key barriers to breast cancer screening. An innovative CD, developed by a team of American-Indian community members, uses traditional storytelling and talking circles to communicate with women about the importance of mammography.
Cancer outcomes and treatment regimens for adolescents and young adults
Adolescents and young adults have some of the poorest cancer outcomes and are among the least likely to comply with treatment regimens. The UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Centers Outreach Research & Education Program developed the Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Advisory Board plans, delivers and evaluates cancer prevention, patient support and outreach to this often-neglected group.
Earlier colon cancer screening for Latinos
Anthony Jerant, associate professor of family and community medicine at UC Davis, recognizes that Latinos in the United States are more likely to be diagnosed with colon cancer at advanced stages than other groups because they are less likely to get screened early, when cures are more likely. With a grant from the National Cancer Institute, he developed an interactive multimedia computer software program to educate Latino patients about colon cancer risk and to boost colon cancer screening rates and improve survival.
Determinants of racial/ethnic colorectal cancer screening disparities
AANCART working with the Hmong Women's Heritage Association to educate and improve cervical cancer screening among Hmong women
Cervical cancer can largely be prevented through routine Pap testing. Hmong women, who face linguistic and cultural barriers, have the lowest Pap screening rates of any racial or ethnic group in California. Working with the Hmong Women’s Heritage Association, the Asian American network for cancer Awareness, Research and Training (AANCART) seeks to address these disparities with a culturally-competent peer navigation program that provided education, help with screening, interpreting and translation services. Moon Chen Jr., a UC Davis professor of hematology and oncology who specializes in developing linguistically specific, culturally tailored and population-based health interventions, oversees AANCART.