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New Grant to Boost Cancer Screening Among Limited English-Proficient Populations

New Grant to Boost Cancer Screening Among Limited English-Proficient Populations

Linda Ko, Professor and Associate Chair in the Department of Health Systems and Population Health, has received a $250,000 Emergent Issues in Public Health Grant from the Andy Hill CARE Fund to examine methods to increase cancer screening among limited English-proficient (LEP) populations by building the capacity of community health workers (CHW) to select, adapt, and implement evidence-based interventions (EBI) for cancer prevention and control.

“Cancer prevention and control among LEP communities is a national priority, and National Cancer Institute has identified implementation science as key to increasing adoption of EBIs,” Ko said. “Unfortunately, EBIs are underused in these communities due to low awareness.”

Dr. Ko’s team has developed an implementation strategy dubbed Implementation Studio to build the capacity of CHWs employed by community-based organizations (CBO) to select, adapt, and implement EBIs for cancer prevention and control with funding from CDC. The objective of Implementation Studio is to build knowledge of EBIs and skills on the implementation of EBIs in CBO settings. Implementation Studio was pilot tested with CHWs who serve Spanish-speaking Latinos in rural communities through virtual training.

The grant will allow Ko and her team, including collaborators Dr. Peggy Hannon from HSPop and Dr. Allison Cole from the Department of Family Medicine, to expand the training beyond Spanish-speaking CHWs and build the institutional capacity of CBOs and interpersonal capacity of CHWs to address cancer screening disparities among LEP communities in Washington State. “We need proactive approaches to address cancer disparities, and our data show that Implementation Studio can be part of that solution.”