Community Engagement at the Boston University Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI)
What we do:
Our goal is to match the power of research with the power of the community to catalyze and support community research that matters. We aim to do this by understanding the barriers to the conduct of research so that we may create resources to support research which improves the health of our community.
Current CTSI Community Engagement efforts include:
1. Community Advisory Board: a dynamic group of scientist, clinicians and community stake holders working together for a healthier community, are actively involved with discussions and decision making surrounding research in our community including providing input on the conduct of research, disseminating research opportunities and results, and developing future research goals.
2. Patient Advisory Group: an active group of cancer survivors who receive their treatment at BMC who are committed to providing feedback on our community outreach efforts to raise awareness about research. They also provide invaluable feedback on existing research protocols and help disseminate research findings back to the community.
3. Educational Outreach: our educational outreach team includes a bi-lingual community health educator trained in the delivery of clinical trials messaging that intends to motivate our vulnerable community members to volunteer to participate in research that matters to them. We also provide one-on-one consultations and large group seminars on best practices for researchers interested in conducting patient-centered or community based research, looking to report their research back to the community.
4. Boston Healthnet Research Subcommittee: At the request of the Boston HealthNet Board of Directors in 2005, A Research Subcommittee was founded to individually review all research projects that will take place at any of the Boston HealthNet Community Health Centers. The Research Subcommittee provides guidance to both researchers and health centers on research design and analysis and protection of human subjects, including protocol review and data and safety monitoring to encourage rigorous research that matters to the Community Health Centers.
5. RESPECT Registry: Implemented in 2010, this volunteer registry now includes over 5,500 community members who agree to be contacted for participation in future research studies.
Learn about the many community engagement efforts in our region:
Black Women’s Health Study: The BWHS gathers information on the 59,000 black women who enrolled 1995 for many conditions that affect Black women, like breast cancer, lupus, premature birth, hypertension, colon cancer, diabetes, uterine fibroids. When the participants entered the study, they provided information on factors that might influence health and disease, such as contraceptive use, cigarette smoking, and diet. At regular intervals, participants provide updated information on these factors and on any illnesses they develop. http://www.bu.edu/bwhs/
Vital Village: The Vital Village Community Partnership (Identify, Revive, and Celebrate) is a resident-led effort to identify an unused or abandoned park, clean-up and landscape the space, and celebrate the neighborhood enhancement through a peer-to-peer networking about experiences with family focused organizations and resources in the community. http://www.vitalvillage.org/projects/vital-village-community-partnership
Boston Center for Refugee Health and Human Rights: BCRHHR provides comprehensive medical, mental health, obstetric/gynecological care coordinated with social services and legal referrals to approximately 375 individuals from over 40 countries. Interpreter services are available for more than 30 languages to aid in the healing journey of each patient and their families. http://www.bmc.org/refugeehealth.htm
Boston University Area Health Education Center: BU AHEC aims to foster an interest in primary care careers for medical students and residents, and to support the practice and teaching of primary care medicine in the community. http://www.bumc.bu.edu/busm-ahec/
Partnership in Health and Housing: a collaboration among Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH), Boston Housing Authority (BHA), Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC), and the PHH Community Committee (public housing residents and community advocates) to promote the health and well-being of BHA residents through community collaboration, with the long-term goal of decreasing documented health disparities between public housing residents and other residents in Boston. http://www.bu.edu/sph/research/research-landing-page/partnership-in-health-and-housing/
CityLab: CityLab is a fully equipped Biotechnology laboratory located at the Boston University, School of Medicine. Students and teachers explore topics in health, disease and industry through an inquiry-based methodology. CityLab is available to Middle and High School students, educators, and groups interested in Biotechnology. http://www.bumc.bu.edu/citylab/Northeast
Center for Research to Evaluate & Eliminate Dental Disparities (CREEDD): CREEDD’s mission is to improve oral, dental and craniofacial health through research, research training, and the dissemination of health information, with a focus on the elimination of oral health disparities. http://www.bu.edu/creedd/
Recruitment Services Program: The ReSPECT Registry consists of individuals who agree to be contacted about participating in studies at BU/BMC. The Registry contains health and demographic information and is linked to Boston Medical Center medical records to assist in matching participants to studies based on the main eligibility criteria. Registry members are recruited into the program on an ongoing basis. http://www.bumc.bu.edu/crro/recruitment/respect-registry/
Judith Henderson, MM
Community Health Center Coordinator
Conducting research in Community Health Centers
Ann Han, MSc
Community Outreach Coordinator
Consultations on best practices in community engagement; educational outreach; receiving community input through the Community Advisory Board or Patient Advisory Group