A Community-Academic Partnership to Explore and Address Cancer Disparities in Southwest Chicago Arab Americans

Online Publication Date:
July 6, 2022
Publication Status:
Published Article MUSE Link:
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**Published in Progress in Community Health Partnerships (PCHP) 17.3. All rights reserved.**

ABSTRACT Background. Despite the need to consider multiple sources of evidence to guide locally and culturally relevant interventions, few studies have documented the process by which evidence is integrated. Objectives. We leveraged a community-academic partnership to describe a participatory approach to integrating community and academic sources of evidence to inform cancer programming priorities in the Arab American (ArA) community in Southwest Chicago. Methods. Informed by Intervention Mapping, this study comprised three phases led by community and academic partners: 1) qualitative assessment of cancer-related priorities through eight focus groups with 48 ArA community members, 2) a focused literature review to identify models of cancer interventions implemented with ArAs, and 3) integration of focus group and literature review findings and development of a strategy for a community-based cancer program administered by the community partner. Results. Focus groups revealed attitudes and beliefs across the cancer control continuum. The literature review highlighted two cancer interventions utilizing education, community health workers, and patient navigation components.Through facilitated discussions with community partners, we integrated community and academic sources of evidence to develop a comprehensive cancer program plan that is informed by the data we generated as well as our community partners’ preferences and organizational capacity. Conclusions. Our participatory approach for integrating community and academic sources of evidence generated a locally-relevant strategy to address cancer burden in the ArA community in Chicago. We discuss the benefits and challenges of utilizing this approach in intervention development.