A Retrospective Case Study of Successful Translational Research: Cardiovascular Disease Risk Assessment, Experiences in Community Engagement

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Journal of Clinical and Translational Science


In underserved communities across New York City, uninsured adults encounter a greater risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes. The Heart-to-Heart Community Outreach Program (H2H) addresses these disparities by screening for CVD risk factors, identifying healthcare access barriers, and fostering community engagement in translational research at the Weill Cornell Medicine Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) hub. Screening events are hosted in partnership with faith-based institutions. Participants provide a medical history, complete a survey, and receive counseling by clinicians with referrals for follow-up care. This study aims to quantify H2H screening participant health status; identify socioeconomic, health access, and health-related barriers disproportionately promoting the onset of CVD and diabetes; and develop long-term community partnerships to enable underserved communities to influence activities across the translational research spectrum at our CTSA hub. The population served is disproportionately non-white, and uninsured, with many low-income and underserved individuals. The program was developed in partnership with our Community Advisory Board to empower this cohort to make beneficial lifestyle changes. Leveraging partnerships with faith-based institutions and community centers in at-risk New York City neighborhoods, H2H addresses the increasing burden of diabetes and CVD risk factors in vulnerable individuals while promoting community involvement in CTSA activities, serving as a model for similar initiatives.