Why do African American women in Nebraska have one of the highest breast cancer mortality rates in the United States? More importantly, what can we do in order to improve the survival among African American breast cancer patients?
In late 2012, a team of researchers from the Center for Reducing Health Disparities at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) undertook a focus group study to get perspectives from diverse groups of stakeholders on these issues. The team is interviewing about 100 people from the following groups: health care providers including primary care and cancer specialists, public health organizations, cancer advocacy groups, African American breast cancer survivors, younger African American women without breast cancer, and older African American women without breast cancer.
The focus groups are being conducted now and the study is expected to be completed in early fall of 2013. The data collected through the focus group will be used to identify key issues and generate ideas for intervention programs to reduce breast cancer disparities in Nebraska. This project is funded by the UNMC Eppley Cancer Center and the American Cancer Society. The study’s investigators are Jackie Hill, MSN, APRN-C, Shinobu Watanabe-Galloway, PhD, and Dejun Su, PhD.
This research work follows a special presentation, African American Women and Breast Cancer that originated from the UNMC College of Public Health in Omaha on February 1, 2012. The presentation was attended by eighty-one healthcare providers, educators, and support service professionals participating via nine Nebraska Telehealth sites in Douglas, Sarpy and Lancaster counties. UNMC staff members Shinobu Watanabe-Galloway, Ph.D., Jackie Hill, MSN, APRN, NP-C, and Dr. Phyllis Nsiah-Kumi, MD, MPH were joined by Melissa Leypoldt, RN, with the Every Woman Matters program and breast cancer survivors Gwen Watson and Trisha Turner to share research findings, personal insights, and information about local programs working to reduce breast cancer mortality rates among African American women.
African American Women and Breast Cancer Research Presentation 2012 2 01 (1MB) – PDF of Powerpoint slides by Dr. Watanabe-Galloway providing national and Nebraska statistics and information about breast cancer incidence, staging and mortality among African American women.
Every Woman Matters Feb. 1Presentation_final (1MB) – PDF of Powerpoint slides sharing data about the screening program’s success reaching African American women in Nebraska.
Mtg 2.1Navigator ppt(1MB)- PDF of Powerpoint slides by Dr. Nsiah-Kumi and Jackie Hill describing the Community Breast Health Navigator and Support Program which helps women in Douglas and Sarpy counties who have an abnormal report on a mammogram navigate through the healthcare system.
Chicago Task Force Model – Download a PDF Chicago_2009 that outline strategies developed by a Community Task Force focused on increasing breast health screening rates for African American women in their community
My Sisters Keeper - This Omaha-based survivor’s group offers community education and support.
AHRQ Presentation – This Powerpoint presentation was delivered at the 2011 AHRQ conference by a team working to improve outreach to African American women in Philadelphia.
NCI Video link (4:16)- Dr. Lauren Wood, Senior Clinical Investigator at the NCI Center for Cancer Research, discusses the importance of including African Americans and other minorities in clinical trials in this YouTube video.