Our Work

Here in Center for Health Disparities Innovation and Studies (CHDIS), we are dedicated in producing sustainable solutions to improve health and reduce health disparities we’ve seen in the community. It is not an easy task; therefore, it is important to move beyond boundaries and use a more integrated and comprehensive approach.

The team has track record working collaboratively with community advocates, public health authorities, health system partners, and governmental offices. In the process, we listen to the voices from individuals and families regarding the challenges and barriers that they encounter. Working with our state-wide Asian Communities toward Innovative Visionary Environment (ACTIVE) Coalition, our team continues to increase the breadth and depth of health initiatives
that covers wide range of health issues pertinent to Asian communities. Together we develop and implement innovative programs in responding to urgent health issues encountered in the underserved communities.

  • Wellness and Fitness Support for Older Asian Americans: Funding Source: MI Health Endowment Fund

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     Dr. Meriam Caboral-Stevens (PI) and Tsu-Yin Wu (co-PI) received a 2-year grant from Michigan Health Endowment Fund to increase engagement in physical activity and improve healthy habits among Asian Americans 50 years and older. The purposes of the project are: 1) to identify and train culturally congruent Health Coaches, and 2) for trained Health Coaches to work with older Asian Americans from Wayne, Oakland and Kent counties. Culturally congruent Health Coaches are individuals self-identified to be a member of Asian American subgroups who speak, writes, and understand the native language and who has close ties with their community. The curriculum of the 3-day training will focus on contents related to risk assessment to cardiovascular disease, guidelines on physical activity and exercise among older adults, theories on health behavior change, introduction to health coaching. After the training, health coaches are expected to work with several community members for one year on physical activity engagement. The Health Coach training dates will be in Sept. (definite dates to be forthcoming). If you are interested in becoming a Health Coach, please contact Dr. Meriam Caboral-Stevens at [email protected].

  • Michigan Asian American Violence Intervention and Prevention (MI-AAVIP). Funding Source: MDHHS; PI: Tsu-Yin Wu

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     The goal of MI-AAVIP is to reduce community violence and build community resilience and capacity, ultimately reduce the burden of violence for Asian American communities. Project objectives are: 1) increase awareness; 2) provide support, and 3) implement community-based culturally sensitive interventions.
  • Michigan Breast and Cervical Cancer Education Module for Asian Americans.  Funding Source: MDHHS; PI: Tsu-Yin Wu 

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    The goal of this project is to increase breast health awareness, reduce barriers to, and improve access and utilization of breast cancer screening among Michigan's Asian American (AA) women. The project activities include: 1) identify low-income, high-need AA women requiring breast and/or cervical cancer screening services, 2) provide education on breast cancer screening services, and 3) refer these women to received breast/cervical cancer screening services and reduce system and other barriers to receiving these critical screening services.
  • Michigan Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program for Underserved Asian Americans.  Funding Source: MDHHS; PI: Tsu-Yin Wu

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    The purpose of the project is to connect high-risk Asian-Americans in Hamtramck and the Detroit area, specifically the Bangladeshi population, with local organizations and agencies to design, plan, and implement a culturally appropriate lead poisoning prevention program. Program objectives are: 1) increase lead-testing and enhance the linkage to services for high-risk children and pregnant women, 2) provide healthcare professionals and providers with education related to lead testing and elevated blood lead level treatment, and 3) implement a primary prevention program to increase lead awareness and provide resources.  We are rooted and invested in the community, working side by side with community leaders to create culturally appropriate interventions. We have established relationships with multi-sector partners to enhance linkage to medical, financial, and educational services. The Lead Team is dedicated to increasing lead poisoning awareness and prevention in the Bangladeshi population in Hamtramck and the Detroit area.

  •  Michigan Colorectal Cancer Early Detection program for Asian Americans.   Funding Source: MDHHS; PI: Tsu-Yin Wu

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     The goal of the proposed project is to reduce disparities related to colorectal cancer screening experienced by uninsured Asian Americans (AA) in Michigan and target AA communities. Specific aims are to utilize evidence-based strategies and implement a culturally and linguistically appropriate strategies for AA communities to promote awareness, provide patient navigation and refer eligible AAs to Michigan CRC Early Detection Program (MCRCEDP) screening sites in Metro Detroit areas and Grand Rapids, ultimately,increase colorectal cancer screening for Asian Americans in Michigan. 
  •  Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH).  Funding Source: CDC;  PI: Tsu-Yin Wu

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     The CHDIS currently houses a REACH project funded by the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC). In 2018, Eastern Michigan University is one of 31 recipients in the nation, and the only one solely focused on the priority population of Asian Americans in Michigan. In this five-year initiative, our team in CHDIS aims to reduce chronic disease burdens experienced by Asian Americans by working with our state-wide coalition to identify contributors of health disparities among Asian Americans and implement policy, system, and environment change strategies to improve nutrition, physical activity, and community-clinical linkages. In nutrition domain, we’re working with food systems (for example, grocery stores, local food pantry) to increase healthy food offering. In Physical activity domain, we’re using geography information system (known as GIS) to map factors influencing individual’s’ physical activity pattern and build Activity-Friendly Communities. In community clinical linkages we are connecting Asian Americans to appropriate and locally available health programs which they have not utilized before
  • Safe Routes to School (SRTS).  Funding Source: MI Fitness Foundation and the MI Department of Transportation.  PI: Xining Yang.; Co-PI: Tsu-Yin Wu

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    The three goals of the program are: 1) build a culture of walking and biking at city of Hamtramck with the participation of children, parents, and individuals with interests, 2) increase the number  and safety of children walking and biking to school in Hamtramck communities, and 3) work with schools, parents, community organizations, city council and planner in building momentum, planning and application process for infrastructure improvements to create walkable communities. 
  • Immersive Community, Culture, & Care Experiences for Undergraduate Nursing Students: The 360-degree Difference

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    A team of nursing faculty developed three unique simulation products to assist nursing educators across the State of Michigan in implementing alternative clinical experiences. These educational materials aim to prepare nursing students to deliver culturally-sensitive care by:

    1. Increasing awareness of social determinants of health.
    2. Evaluating patient/family/community level factors related to health, access and barriers to healthcare.
    3. Developing effective communication strategies and nursing interventions.

    To learn more visit the official website.

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