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Partnerships for Native Health Washington State University


Using Digital Stories to Improve Colorectal Cancer Screening in Native Americans

Using Digital Stories to Improve Colorectal Cancer Screening in Native Americans

Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer and the second-leading cause of cancer mortality in the U.S. If colorectal cancer is detected early through regular screening, survival rates are favorable. However, screening rates in the American Indian and Alaska Native population declined between 2002 and 2006, despite an increase in screening rates in the general U.S. population.

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Collaborative to Improve Native Cancer Outcomes

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Collaborative to Improve Native Cancer Outcomes (CINCO)

Traditionally, studies of vulnerable populations have focused on specific disease disparities targeted at the individual level. The Collaborative to Improve Native Cancer Outcomes seeks to implement a different approach to cancer outcomes, in that it considers diverse cancer disparities as systemic disorders of society. The key factors targeted in this method range from the micro level to the macro level, from genetic vulnerabilities to health policies.

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Kidney Donation

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Culturally-adapted Strategies to Enhance Kidney Donation in Native Communities

End-stage kidney disease disproportionately affects American Indians. National statistics document that for American Indians, the prevalence of end-stage kidney disease is 3.5 times higher than for White Americans. Despite similar referral rates for kidney transplants, American Indians are less likely than Whites to be placed on a transplant waiting list or to receive a transplant. In 2007, NIDDK funded six academic centers, including ours at the University of Washington, to test ways to increase organ donation in minority populations. We conducted a mixed-methods study that revealed cultural beliefs and barriers to organ donation among rural American Indians. Findings from that study informed our current strategy to conduct a multi-level intervention with tribal dialysis centers and American Indian patients awaiting organ transplants.


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Native People for Cancer Control Bioethics

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Regional Native American Community Network Program Center: Native People for Cancer Control – Bioethics Supplement

American Indians and Alaska Natives are extremely diverse in culture, residential location, and health care needs. Despite this diversity, which encompasses rural tribes and villages as well as growing urban communities, all are typically placed in a single category when national, state, and local statistics are calculated. Many published statistics do not even include an enumeration of American Indians and Alaska Natives. Yet accurate demographic data are indispensable, because government policymakers use them to make decisions about funding for education, health, and other community needs. A simple lumping of hundreds of distinct small groups under the unified heading of American Indians/Alaska Natives will likely result in a false picture of health trends, given the unique strengths, resources, histories, and concerns of these varied populations. For final product please see our Guidebook and Visual PowerPoint.

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Understanding Cancer

We are currently developing an interactive online cancer curriculum in partnership with Dr. Melany Cueva at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. Please check back in Spring of 2013

Our Mission

We conduct community-centered research, training, education, and outreach to improve the health and quality of life of American Indian and Alaska Native populations.

Chehalis Health Fair

One of the great pleasures of working in community outreach and cancer education is the opportunity to build partnerships with tribal communities, including the Chehalis Tribe, who are invaluable partners in our cancer prevention efforts. Two members of Native People for Cancer Control (NPCC) – Colleen Echohawk (Community Outreach Manager) and Lanesse Baker (Research Core Lead) – recently staffed a table at the Chehalis Health Fair, which was held in the new and beautiful community center on the Chehalis Reservation. The event was well attended, with more than 174 people and 56 vendor tables participating.
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