In the News
FSU Research Team was awarded more than three million dollars in its quest to end racial inequalities in health care. The National Institutes of Health Director's Transformative awarded the money to FSU. The university says the money will be used to research behavioral and social issues in the health care system. "So the idea is to develop a paradigm for tackling complex systems using system science and then marrying them with people who develop interventions," says Sylvie Naar, who is with the Center for Translational Behavioral Science. According to FSU officials, racism in health care leads to significant health disparities and results in poor outcomes in diagnosing patients with physical and mental health conditions. The goal of this research will be to reduce and eliminate such issues.
Read this op-ed to learn how racial disparities fuel breast cancer mortality for Black women. Earlier this month a team of Florida State University researchers received a National Institutes of Health Director’s Transformative Research award worth $3.1 million to investigate racial inequities in the nation’s healthcare system. The project is expected to focus on the impact of racism in primary care that leads to significant health disparities in the diagnosis and treatment of physical and mental health conditions. Associate Professor of Social Work Carrie Pettus said the approach will allow them to understand areas of bias within the health system from a wide variety of perspectives including patients, community members, health administrators, healthcare providers, and experts in the field. "What we're trying to do is move beyond just documenting racial bias and take action to implement solutions. We believe the most effective way to do this, based on prior research, is to have the stakeholders including the ones perpetuating bias to help generate the solutions," Pettus said. "That way they will be able to adopt policies and practices and sustain them moving forward."
There is no denying that racism is a public health emergency in America. Read this guest commentary by IJRD's Founding Executive Director in the Orlando Sentinel which details data-driven strategies to move beyond documenting racism and take bold action to disrupt racial bias & promote equity across the criminal justice system.
A team of Florida State University researchers has received a National Institutes of Health Director’s Transformative Research Award worth $3.1 million to investigate racial inequities in the nation’s health-care system. The award is the first of its kind to be administered by the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities, part of the NIH.
FSU College of Medicine Distinguished Endowed Professor Sylvie Naar is principal investigator for the five-year grant, along with Assistant Vice President for Research and Academic Affairs Norman Anderson and College of Social Work Associate Professor Carrie Pettus.
Criminal justice reform and real change are possible — and happening now — through successful partnerships between researchers, policymakers and corrections officials. South Carolina emerges as an example of true successful collaboration.
The numbers are the problem for Associate Professor of Social Work Carrie Pettus at Florida State University. More than 12,000 people are released from state and federal prisons each week, and 77% of formerly incarcerated individuals return to prison within five years. “If you can imagine going to a doctor and they say here’s this medical intervention that works 23 percent of the time, would we continue to use that intervention? No,” Carrie Pettus, founding executive director of IJRD, said.
Pettus leads is leading a team of 70 researchers and practitioners dedicated to using science to create data-driven solutions to drive down reliance on the criminal justice system. IJRD creates models for correctional systems to assist formerly incarcerated individuals struggling to re-enter society. They train law enforcement officers on identifying and addressing post-traumatic stress disorder among their colleagues. They address trauma among men in prisons. It’s a whole-system approach to the criminal justice system.
FSU has launched a new initiative designed to amplify centers and institutes that are doing high-profile, public-impact research and connect them with donors interested in pursuing big questions. Three centers were chosen for the initial pilot phase of the initiative – IJRD, the Florida Center for Reading Research, and the Resilient Infrastructure and Disaster Response Center.
“Big Bets requires faculty to look several years, perhaps even a decade, into the future and articulate the major impacts their research can achieve with the infusion of a multimillion-dollar world-changing gift,” Fulkerson said. “We recognize the delta that exists between our excellent research centers and the resources needed to make a colossal impact. This initiative is an attempt to bridge that gap and connect our centers to big thinkers with big ideas about changing the world.”
About 50 people received special training as part of a St. Johns County Sheriff and Florida State University Institute for Justice Research and Development program designed to enhance mental health measures.
The training conducted on April 26 and 27 focused on peer support for co-workers during high-stress situations. About half the participants were employees of the sheriff’s office, while the other half were professionals in St. Johns County workplaces.
Ultimately, the training provided steps and measures to take if a co-worker mental health support in an office or workplace setting.
IJRD and the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office partnered together last week to deliver 24 sheriff’s office personnel and 25 others peer-to-peer support training. Law enforcement officers are exposed to violence and suffering every day, which can cause emotional stress and impact the brain and body, resulting in post-traumatic stress. The training, conducted by IJRD, aims to give law enforcement officers a deeper understanding of how the mind and body react to on-the-job stress and learn actionable steps they can take to help support others who are suffering.
“We are grateful to IJRD for developing this one-of-a-kind training that is critically important to our law enforcement personnel who are constantly exposed to violence and suffering, which, in turn, manifests as post-traumatic stress,” said St. Johns County Sheriff Robert A. Hardwick. “This program will ensure they have the skillset necessary to identify this stress and take action to handle it not only in themselves, but with their peers.”
IJRD student researcher Olivia Hitchcock worked with Mercy House Director and IJRD Community Advisory Board member Dale White to conduct a program evaluation to ensure Mercy House's services were making maximum impact. Hitchcock led the review, with other participants including Good News Outreach program and volunteer coordinator Fundra Hart, program participants, experts in reentry to society after prison, faith leaders and other experts.