Recently Completed Projects
Appalachian Diseases of Despair Update. On behalf of the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), NORC and ETSU investigated how “diseases of despair” impact the Appalachian region, updating a report developed in 2017. Diseases of despair include deaths due to alcohol and drug overdose, suicide, and alcoholic liver disease/cirrhosis. The 2020 update of the Appalachian Diseases of Despair report included 2018 mortality data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). In addition to analyzing deaths caused by the diseases of despair, we also analyzed opioid-related deaths for the Appalachian counties of states in the Region. NORC investigated where disparities were concentrated within the region, and specifically, analyzed mortality data by Appalachian sub-region, county economic status, and rurality.
Standardized Overdose Surveillance Data to Inform Targeted Drug-Related Prevention, Treatment, Policy Making, and Harm Reduction Strategies. On behalf of the American Medical Association (AMA), NORC and ETSU explored current overdose surveillance dashboards and identified parameters, commonalities, best practices, and data quality standards. We reviewed all 50 states and the District of Columbia to identify any existing drug overdose surveillance dashboards, selecting 15 dashboards for more in-depth review. Of those 15 dashboards, we also conducted interviews with 5 of the exemplar dashboards. The study identified best practices and recommendations for dashboard development and maintenance, including establishing a clear understanding of the target audience, building strong relationships with data stewards, establishing processes the streamline dashboard updating, and developing a dashboard that is sustainable and meets individual state needs. Lastly, NORC and ETSU provided several recommendations on how AMA may be able to support standardization and surveillance efforts related to overdose dashboards.
The State of Tennessee Report on Poverty and Health. This study was conducted to better understand the association between income and disparities in health, social, and economic metrics at the county-level in Tennessee.
Creating a Culture of Health in Appalachia: Disparities and Bright Spots: Practical Recommendations and Strategies to Support Positive Health Outcomes in Appalachia. Appalachian Regional Commission/Foundation for Healthy Kentucky. 2018-2019.
Identifying Opportunities in Rural Regions to Improve Health and Equity. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. 2017.
Opportunities and Challenges Facing Rural Public Health. National Association of City and County Health Officials. 2017.
Model to Interrupt Social Determinants of Rural Health. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. 2016-2017.
Geographical Distribution of Adverse Childhood Experiences in the United States. ETSU RDC. 2016-2017.
Adverse Childhood Experiences at an HIV clinic in rural Appalachia: a pilot study to assess HIV/AIDS treatment barriers. East Tennessee State University Research Development Committee. 2019-2020.
Healthcare disparities in rural Appalachia. East Tennessee State University Undergraduate Research, Student Faculty Collaborative Grant. 2019-2020
Building Capacity for a Trauma Informed System of Care in Munsieville, South Africa. East Tennessee State University Research Development Committee, Small Grant. 2018-2019
Identifying adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and resilience in college students: steps toward a trauma-informed campus. Tennessee Department of Children’s Services, Building Strong Brains. 2018-2019
Exploring Adverse Childhood Experiences among Mothers and Daughters in South Central Appalachia. East Tennessee State University Research Development Committee, Small Grant. 2016.
Adult health outcomes: Impact of childhood adversity and preventive care on inpatient health risks. ETSU Research Development Committee Major Grant. 2013-2014.
Assessing Regional Health Priorities Through Community Engagement: An Application of the World Café Model in Southern Appalachia
Funding: Mountain States Health Alliance and Wellmont Health System
Reducing Childhood Obesity and Chronic Disease in Central Appalachia – Data Analysis and Planning to Support Promising Practices and Strategies. Appalachian Funders Network. 2015.
Regional Roadmap 2: Down the Road to a Healthier Appalachia and Healthy WEST: Working to Energize and Strengthen Tennessee. Appalachian Regional Commission, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Niswonger Foundation, Eastman Chemical Company
Statewide Healthcare Provider Assessment of Diabetes Practices. Tennessee Department of Health. 2015-2016.
Improving population health: a systems perspective. East Tennessee State University RDC. 2015.
Accreditation of rural health departments: social, economic, cultural and regional factors. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2012.
Survive and Thrive Southeastern Regional Training Center, May 2012-December 2013. National Association of County and City Health Officials.
Public Health Training Center Performance Site, Health Resources and Service Administration.
Public Health Traineeship, Health Resources and Service Administration.
Methodology in Public Health Systems and Services Research (PHSSR). Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2010.
College Students As Facilitators to Reduce Adolescent Obesity Disparity In Southern Appalachia. NIH-NIMHD, 2011-2013.
Tennessee Coordinated School Health Evaluation. Tennessee Department of Education, 2005-2011
Combating Child Obesity and Diabetes in Northeast Tennessee: Winning with Wellness. Tennessee Center for Diabetes Prevention and Health Improvement, 2007-2008.
Role of foods fortified with iron, omega-3 fatty acids and fiber in improving elementary school-aged children’s behavioral outcomes. Research Development Committee, 2008-2009.
Fiscal Constraints and Access to Reproductive Health Services in South Carolina: The Impact of Local Clinic Retraction on Utilization, Outcomes, and Quality of Services in South Carolina. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Public Health Services and Systems Research, Investigator Initiated Award
Measuring the Effects of Public/Private Transition of Pediatric Preventive Services on Unmet Need Among Medicaid Eligible Children. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Public Health Services and Systems Research, Investigator Initiated Award
Impact of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (MIECHV) on Selected Outcomes in South Carolina. Children's Trust Fund of South Carolina
Evaluating the Implementation of a Parenting and Pregnant Team Program. Children's Trust Fund of South Carolina