Community Engagement and Research - mSHARE

To establish and sustain a regional, multi-sector Consortium the mid-South Health Alliance to Realize Equity (mSHARE) will participate in the planning, implementation, dissemination, and evaluation of the iRISE translational research enterprise. mSHARE will develop and support a regional, multi-sector consortium to plan, conduct, and evaluate translational research with a focus on promoting health equity in the mid-South. We willl develop a regional, strategic health framework plan prioritizing special populations including children and those with health disparities.

Facts about our Region
  • The Memphis metropolitan area is commonly referred to as the mid-South and includes 10 counties in three states which comprise the Memphis-Forrest City Combined Statistical Area.
  • The mid-South region, with Memphis located in the center, is located at the crossroads of the national freight corridor and is often referred to as America's Distribution Center.
  • Memphis is the largest air cargo destination of any city in the country and serves as the national hub for FedEx.
  • On the inland waterway system, Memphis is located 640 river miles north of New Orleans and 400 miles south of St. Louis, and ranks as the fourth largest inland water port in the U.S.
  • The mid-South is also central in the national rail network where the metropolitan area is served by five Class I railroads, the most of any metropolitan area in the nation.
  • Memphis is pivotally positioned in nation's highway system, located at the intersection of Interstate 40 and Interstate 55, both which cross the Mississippi River at the city, and Interstate 269, which crosses 10 miles south of the city.
  • Despite its historically key role in the nation's social, economic, and cultural development, the mid-South includes communities that experience among the highest rates of poverty, disease, and health disparities of any region in the country.

mSHARE: a regional, multi-sector, consortium to plan, conduct, and evaluate translational research in the mid-South

A major challenge for translating basic and clinical research findings into clinical interventions, population health practice, public policy, business opportunities, and health professions education and training programs is the development and support of structures to promote and sustain strong cross-sector collaboration with community partners and dissemination networks.

mSHARE serves as a coordinating body to brings together researchers from UTHSC, U of Memphis, and other academic partners in the region with existing community consortiums and organizations to review and translate the results of current research into evidence based clinical practice and public health

mSHARE will enable users to access research and clinical data to improve health care delivery, address new challenges, and take advantage of opportunities as they arise, for example

  • access to health research information, and services
  • translation of laboratory discoveries into improved preventatives and treatments
  • fostering of public trust in research with expanded participation in clinical trials
  • increased academic/community business and workforce development partnerships
  • promotion of regional strategies to address common issues and disparities

Development of a regional strategic health framework to prioritizes the needs of special populations

mSHARE staff will work closely with county public health officials, other health planning organizations, and community leaders and stakeholders to create a public health exposome (PHE) data repository for the mid-South that combines both health and environmental data.

  • A relational database will be established and maintained by mSHARE to strategically guide efforts to recruit and track participation of both academic and community partners.
  • Data will be used to support strategic planning, community-based participatory research, and overall evaluation activities.
  • The data repository will be updated annually at a county level.
  • Where available, data will be collected at more granular resolutions (e.g. census tracts and zip codes).

The data will provide a regional baseline of environmental health disparities and support an outcome evaluation of the impact of iRISE on health disparities in the mid-South.

What health data will we collect?

Our data will be organized around six broad areas of disparities (cancer, cardio-metabolic disease, HIV/STIs, intentional/unintentional injury, maternal and child health, and mental health and substance abuse), and include measures of mortality, morbidity, screening and behaviors. Environmental data will be organized in four broad domains: natural, built, social and policy environments. The PHE data repository will include both raster (e.g. area level) including remotely sensed atmospheric data and vector (point) data and various shape files (e.g. census tracts, zip codes, MSSAs, etc.). Data will be collected and made available at multiple spatial resolutions including county and zip code and other units such as census tracts, where available. The data-base will include longitudinal historical data from 2000 to present to enable the tracking of changes over time. We will explore the use of visualization, imputations, and synthetic estimates to apply attributes of the population from a larger unit to that of a smaller unit and other methodical approaches for characterizing uncertainty due to exposure misclassification, multiple sources of data, and different spatial scales. Data will be collected and stored in ArcView 10.2, geographic information system (GIS) and later reprocessed as a relational database in Microsoft SQL Server to support data queries and the exporting of data to statistical software packages, including SPSS, SAS, R and StatA. A comprehensive data dictionary with metadata for all data elements will be created in MS Access.

For more information community health initiatives conducted by faculty associated with mSHARE visit our other websites:

The Research Center on Health Disparities, Equity and the Exposome
The Interactive Map of Health Equity in Memphis

Director Dr. Juarez is an Associate Professor in the Dept. of Preventive Medicine and co-Director of the Research Center on Health Disparities, Equity and the Exposome,
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