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“The speed dating was such a fun idea,” said Laura Starr, Foundation Relations & Communications Manager at Community Health.“It definitely made me want to have longer conversations with some of the faculty members.In just over a year, this initiative has awarded more than 0,000 to nonprofit leaders and their UChicago research collaborators to propel their innovative work in those areas and evaluate its impact.Members of community nonprofits listen as Doriane Miller, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine & Director of the Center for Community Health and Vitality, kicks off the first Community Benefit Program Meet and Greet.Katherine Mueller, Program Manager for the Asian Health Coalition (left) and Arshiya Baig, MD, MPH (right) discuss using text messaging to enlist family members in helping diabetics to manage their condition.Photo by: Renee de Pooter/UChicago ITM Twenty-three representatives from 14 nonprofits on the front lines of South Side health issues met with more than a dozen potential University of Chicago Medicine collaborators on campus Oct.10 to bring together key players fighting adult diabetes and childhood obesity for the next round of University of Chicago Medicine (UCM) Community Benefit Grant applications.
I walked away with a lot of interesting notes scribbled onto business cards that could lead to some fascinating investigations in our clinic.” UChicago faculty also said the event introduced them to several potential collaborators. ” said Deborah Burnet, MD, Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics and Section Chief of General Internal Medicine, spreading a deck of business cards across a table after the event.“I have follow-ups with most people.” As part of the UCM Community Benefit Grant Program, this joint initiative between the Urban Health Initiative (UHI) and the University of Chicago Institute for Translational Medicine (ITM) to tackle adult diabetes and pediatric asthma and obesity in South Side residents – three prevalent conditions identified by a 2012 UCM Community Health Needs Assessment – launched in 2014.Photo by: Renee de Pooter/UChicago ITM And it’s happening in communities where help is needed the most.About 40 percent of local children ages five to 17 are overweight or obese, according to the report, and the rate of diabetes-related deaths is 1.5 times higher among non-Hispanic blacks in the South Side than in Cook County overall.
“The ITM grants program can address these issues by fostering collaboration between community organizations that are already doing good work in these areas and pairing them with faculty who are passionate about these health issues and can offer their clinical, research, and evaluation expertise,” said ITM investigator Arshiya Baig, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine.To be eligible for the grants, community programs must partner with a UChicago faculty member.