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Health Disparities Research

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, health disparities are differences in health that are closely linked with social or economic disadvantage. Health disparities adversely affect groups of people who have systematically experienced greater social and/or economic obstacles to health based on their racial or ethnic group; religion; socioeconomic status; gender; age; mental health; cognitive, sensory, or physical disability; sexual orientation; geographic location; or other characteristics historically linked to discrimination or exclusion. Groups currently experiencing poorer health status are expected to grow as a proportion of the total U.S. population; therefore, the future health of America as a whole will be influenced substantially by our success or failure in improving the health of these groups. A national focus on disparities in health status is particularly important as major changes unfold in the way in which health care is delivered and financed.

Eliminating racial and ethnic disparities in health will require enhanced efforts at preventing disease, promoting health and delivering appropriate care. This will necessitate improved collection and use of standardized data to correctly identify all high risk populations and monitor the effectiveness of health interventions targeting these groups. Eliminating health disparities will also require new knowledge about the determinants of disease, causes of health disparities, and effective interventions for prevention and treatment. It will require improving access to the benefits of society, including quality preventive and treatment services, as well as innovative ways of working in partnership with health care systems, state and local governments, tribal governments, academia, national and community-based organizations, and communities. Hopkins GIM faculty are working on several health disparities focus areas identified by the Department of Health and Human Services--Cancer screening and management; Cardiovascular Disease; Diabetes; HIV/AIDS, and Patient-Provider Communication--with particular attention to the health of African Americans.


Information about the faculty working in this research area and their projects is provided below.

Photo of Dr. Lawrence J. Appel, M.D., M.P.H.

Appel, Lawrence J., M.D., M.P.H.

Professor of Medicine
Director, Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research, The Johns Hopkins University
The C. David Molina, M.D., M.P.H. Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology and International Health
Research Interests: Hypertension, Cardiovascular and Kidney Disease Prevention, Lifestyle Modification
 
Photo of Dr. Mary Catherine Beach, M.D., M.P.H.

Beach, Mary Catherine, M.D., M.P.H.

Professor of Medicine
Research Interests: Health care quality for underserved populations, Patient-clinician communication, Sickle-cell disease, HIV and substance abuse, Bioethics, Respect
 
Photo of Dr. Diane M. Becker, M.P.H., Sc.D.

Becker, Diane M., M.P.H., Sc.D.

Professor of Medicine
Director, GeneSTAR Research Program
Research Interests: Health disparities, Social/behavioral science, Community based CVD prevention, Molecular and physiologic aspects of CVD risk, Genetics/epidemiology of premature cardiovascular disease (CVD)
 
Photo of Dr. Lisa Angeline Cooper, M.D., M.P.H.

Cooper, Lisa Angeline, M.D., M.P.H.

Professor of Medicine
Bloomberg Distinguished Professor, Health and Healthcare Equity
James F. Fries Professor of Medicine
Director, Johns Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Health Disparities
Core Faculty, Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research
Core Faculty, Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality
Vice President, Health Care Equity for Johns Hopkins Medicine
Research Interests: Race/ethnic health disparities, Patient-centered care, Patient-Physician relationship and communication
 
Photo of Dr. Raquel Charles Greer, M.D., M.H.S.

Greer, Raquel Charles, M.D., M.H.S.

Assistant Professor of Medicine
Co-Director, Clinical Epidemiology Curriculum, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
Research Interests: Health disparities in chronic kidney disease
 
Photo of Dr. Kimberly Anne Gudzune, M.D., M.P.H.

Gudzune, Kimberly Anne, M.D., M.P.H.

Assistant Professor of Medicine
Research Interests: Obesity, Patient-provider relationships, Social networks
 
Photo of Dr. Felicia Hill-Briggs, Ph.D.

Hill-Briggs, Felicia, Ph.D.

Professor of Medicine
Senior Director of Population Health Research and Development, Johns Hopkins HealthCare, LLC
Director of Diabetes Research, Trinidad and Tobago Health Sciences Initiative, Johns Hopkins International
Director, Behavior and Psychometrics Sub-Core, Diabetes Research Center
Core Faculty, Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research
Research Interests: Neuropsychology, Chronic disease self-management, Functional impairment and disability, Health disparities, Behavioral intervention trials
 
Photo of Dr. Edgar Raymond Miller, III, M.D., Ph.D.

Miller, Edgar Raymond, M.D., Ph.D. III

Professor of Medicine
Deputy Director - Johns Hopkins Institute for Clinical and Translational Science, Research Clinical, Education, Training and Career Development Program
Director Clinical Research Scholars Program (KL-2), Johns Hopkins Institute for Clinical and Translational Research
Research Interests: Non-pharmacologic therapies, Hypertension, Antioxidants
 
Photo of Dr. Craig Evan Pollack, M.D., M.H.S.

Pollack, Craig Evan, M.D., M.H.S.

Associate Professor of Medicine
Associate Professor of Oncology
Co-Director, General Internal Medicine Fellowship Program
Research Interests: cancer health services research, social network analysis, cancer screening, social determinants of health
 
Photo of Dr. Hsin-Chieh Yeh, Ph.D.

Yeh, Hsin-Chieh, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Medicine
Associate Professor of Oncology
Sr. Epidemiologist, Osler Housestaff Research Program
Director, GIM Methods Core
Director, JHU-UMD Diabetes Research Center Health Care and Population Science Core
Core Faculty Member, Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology and Clinical Research
Research Interests: obesity and cancer, cancer epidemiology, clinical trials, racial disparity
 
Photo of Dr. Jeffery Hunter Young, M.D., M.H.S.

Young, Jeffery Hunter, M.D., M.H.S.

Associate Professor of Medicine
Assistant Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Research Interests: Insulin resistance, Hypertension, Novel risk factors for CVD, Genetic epidemiology
 

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