A Community-Engaged Approach to Environmental Health Research: Process and Lessons Learned

Online Publication Date:
December 24, 2021
Publication Status:
Published Article MUSE Link:

**Published in Progress in Community Health Partnerships (PCHP) 15.4, December 2021. All rights reserved.**
This study used a community-engaged approach to examine associations between environmental contaminants and health outcomes among residents of Yuma, Arizona. Our team conducted a process evaluation to assess scientific rigor and adherence to community engagement principles.
Our evaluation focused on four dimensions of community based participatory research: 1) context, 2) group dynamics, 3) intervention and research, and 4) outcomes.
Interviews were conducted with key informants from community partner organizations. Thematic analysis was used to evaluate community partners’ experiences with our collaborative process.
Lessons Learned:
Community partners reported collaborating to establish research goals, recruit participants, collect data, plan analyses, and formulate dissemination strategies. Training needs, roles, and expectations of community partners varied based on available resources, prior research experience, and perceived research challenges.
Leveraging community-engaged principles for studies of environmental contamination can expedite recruitment efforts and stimulate action to improve health outcomes.