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New family health history projects focus on Alaska Native, Appalachian communities

f literacy about the importance of family health history. Another goal will be to raise awareness among health care professionals working in the targeted areas about the need to collect family health information. The team will be led by Melanie Myers, Ph.D., assistant director of the Genetic Counseling Program at the University of Cincinnati. Other collaborators include the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, The Appalachian Outreach/Studies Program at Sinclair College in Dayton, the Health Literacy Initiative at Ohio State University and six local community organizations. The community organizations are Brighton Community Center in Newport, Ky.; Lower Price Hill Community School and Urban Appalachian Council, both in Cincinnati; the Life Enrichment Center, the Sunrise Center Weed and Seed Initiative, and Volunteers of Greater Ohio, all in Dayton.

The second project will be led by Ruth Etzel, M.D., Ph.D., at the Southcentral Foundation, which is an Alaska Native health care organization located in Anchorage. The primary goal of this effort will be to develop tools and methods for creating a common understanding about the role and importance of family health history among Southcentral Foundation's staff. The foundation employs more than 1,300 people, of which more than half are Alaska Natives. This project will receive co-funding from NHGRI and the NIH's National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities.

"We are excited about the potential of these projects to expand the reach and impact of the Surgeon General's Family Health Initiative. We look forward to working with these communities to achieve their goals, as well as to sharing their models with other communities and populations across the country," said Vence Bonham, J.D., chief of NHGRI's Education and Community Involvement Branch, which administers the projects.

The new projects will expand upon what is being learned in NHGRI's Family History demonstration proje
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Contact: Geoff Spencer
spencerg@mail.nih.gov
301-402-0911
NIH/National Human Genome Research Institute
15-Nov-2006


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