Air date: May 11, 2022

Guest Panelists:


Heather Kitzman, PhD & Leilani Dodgen, MPH, Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center



Is faith the new prescription for disease prevention? Heather Kitzman, PhD, Director of Research at the Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center and Professor at Baylor University, and Leilani Dodgen, MPH, Research Manager at the Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center, think so. Their research into diabetes prevention programs using randomized trials in African American churches provides support for this new ally. The trial evaluated a community-based participatory research developed faith-based diabetes prevention program to improve weight loss in African American women where lay health leaders facilitated interventions at church sites with pastor involvement. Join us for this HERO webinar as Heather and Leilani present the outcomes of their research and lessons learned to help others get the most out of using faith in prevention. This research won Paper of the Year from the American Journal of Health Promotion.

 

Heather Kitzman, PhD, is the Director of Research at the Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center and a Clinical Associate Professor of Health Services Research at the Robbins Institute for Health Policy & Leadership at Baylor University. Her area of expertise is the implementation of large randomized trials in community-based settings including schools, clinics, churches, and other community sites to test novel approaches to improve chronic disease risk. In her role as Research Director, she manages all programmatic healthcare data within the center. She oversees data analysts and data managers to integrate data sources including wellness services, primary care electronic health records, and other clinical services such as medical nutrition therapy, diabetes prevention programs, and many others. This aggregated data is used to evaluate value-based care models, publish innovations to influence healthcare policy, and strengthen the center’s programmatic funded research initiatives.

Leilani Dodgen, MPH, is a Research Manager at the Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center and a PhD candidate in public health from University of North Texas Health Science Center. For the last decade, she has applied community based participatory research (CBPR) to improve the health of underserved communities, particularly women. Through building relationships with and partnering to build various community advisory boards or groups she has helped in the design, implementation, and evaluation of multiple theory-based, CBPR, lifestyle interventions. In her current role at Baylor Scott and White Health, Leilani continues to utilize CBPR as a way to address health inequities within the southern sector of Dallas. She is currently a Co-Investigator on the I-POP trial evaluating the role of community health workers as navigators for social and medical needs in a randomized trial.


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