Funding Will Advance Tobacco Research, Strengthen Prevention

The American Legacy Foundation is reaching deep into local communities providing $6 million in grant funding to gain a better understanding of the effectiveness of tobacco control work in states and localities nationwide. Contracts awarded in collaboration with the CDC Foundation, will fund projects at nine Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Centers from Baltimore to Tucson.

“We’re deeply committed to supporting research on the prevention and treatment of tobacco dependence and to identify those programs that work best to curb tobacco’s tragic tolls,” said Cheryl G. Healton, Dr.P.H., president and CEO of Legacy. “This funding will identify the types of programs in communities in the United States that can be replicated in cities and towns from coast to coast to help extinguish tobacco use.”

Nine Prevention Research Centers will receive funding from Legacy beginning this year with funds distributed over a three-year period expected to total $6 million. Legacy is working with the CDC Foundation, which through collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), will allocate project funds and monitor the progress of projects. Awards fund activities in four areas:

Youth Cessation:

  • The Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Adolescent Health Promotion Disease Prevention will concentrate on the outcomes and effectiveness of two different youth smoking cessation programs in Baltimore.
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Center for Health Promotion will evaluateyouth smoking cessation program in Alabama high schools.

Youth Development / Empowerment:

  • University of New Mexico’s Center for Health Promotion and Disease Preventionwill explore the functions and impact of its statewide tobacco youth advocacy coalition and evaluate New Mexico’s local youth advocacy coalitions’ training procedures, skills of advocates, extent of youth-led direction in program planning and implementation, and youth-conducted tobacco control activities.

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention will document the adoption of youth empowerment programs for tobacco use prevention, analyzing their impact and tobacco use prevalence on the stringency of school tobacco use policies and media coverage of youth empowerment programs in daily newspapers.

  • University of South Carolina’s Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Center will create a comprehensive database youth empowerment programs statewide and the degree to which those programs affect youth empowerment indicators.

Best Practices:

  • Saint Louis University’s Prevention Research Center will conduct a process evaluation to determine how states implement the guidelines contained in the 1999 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report “Best Practices for Comprehensive Tobacco Control Programs.”
  • University of Arizona’s Southwest Center for Community Health Promotion will analyze the degree to which four southwestern border states (Arizona, California,New Mexico, and Texas) have addressed and implemented the “CDC Best Practices on Community Programs to Reduce Tobacco Use” in Hispanic and Native American communities to address youth tobacco prevention and adult tobacco cessation.

Assessment of Community Needs:

  • Columbia University’s Harlem Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention will study current levels of capacity and infrastructure related to tobacco prevention and control for the Harlem community and provide recommendations regarding ongoing surveillance and recommendations of enhancement.
  • University of Oklahoma’s Oklahoma Center for Prevention Research in Native Americans will evaluate the capacity of Native American communities in Oklahoma to engage in tobacco prevention and control efforts and explore strategies for ongoing surveillance and enhancement.

“We are exited about this partnership between the American Legacy Foundation and the CDC Foundation,” says Charlie Stokes, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation. “We think working together in this effort will be an effective strategy for reducing tobacco use.”

The grant funding is part of a three-year effort to expand the work of health promotion and disease prevention research centers at public and private universities across the country in tobacco prevention and control. Earlier this year, the CDC’s 23 Prevention Research Centers were invited to submit proposals designed to help state health departments conduct tobacco-related research and activities. It is the intention of Legacy to work with the nine funded Prevention Research Centers to prepare special reports for public policy makers to insure that findings of the projects are incorporated into practice.