Winter 2023 UW Population Health Initiative Pilot Research Grant Awarded

Winter 2023 UW Population Health Initiative Pilot Research Grant Awarded

By: Alexandra de Leon Date: March 28th, 2023

Various members of HIPRC were awarded a UW Population Health Initiative Pilot Research Grant.
Learn more about these projects below:

Tier 1 Pilot Grants

Originally posted to UW Population Health Initiative’s Website

The Population Health Initiative has awarded four Tier 1 pilot grants to interdisciplinary team representing researcher from the University of Washington’s College of Arts & Sciences, College of Education, School of Medicine, School of Nursing & Healthcare Leadership (UW Tacoma) and School of Public Health, plus several community-based partners. The total award value of these grants is nearly $125,000, including school, department, and unit matching funds. 

Project Title

Understanding unmet needs among people with violence-related spinal cord injury: A mixed methods study

Heather M. Barnett, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Deepika Nehra, Department of General Surgery
Catherine Wolff, Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine
Chelsea Hicks, Department of Pediatrics
Deborah Crane, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Jeanne Hoffman, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Monica Vavilala, Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine

Project abstract
Violence is the third leading cause of spinal cord injury (SCI) in the United States, a condition that results in high morbidity and high lifetime costs of care, with worse outcomes among vulnerable populations. Violence-related injury disproportionately affects Black and Hispanic Americans and likely contributes to racial and ethnic health disparities. Patients with violence-related SCI have poor psychosocial outcomes and increased medical complications compared to patients with other SCI etiologies; lack of access to optimal acute and rehabilitation care may contribute to poor outcomes following injury in this population.

These types of disparities in tertiary prevention after injury and violence are an understudied but important determinant of long-term outcomes and population health, particularly among those living at the intersection of disability and other marginalizing social structures. This project proposes a novel evaluation of access to medical care and rehabilitation services after violence-related SCI in a mixed methods study of SCI patients treated at Harborview Medical Center.

Specific Aims

This study will include (1) interviews with patients with violence-related SCI from urban and rural areas to understand unmet needs, barriers and facilitators to care, and patient recommendations for improvement and (2) analysis of medical records and medical claims data from the Washington All-Payer Claims database to quantitatively evaluate differences in care utilization between patients with violence-related SCI and other SCI etiologies. Our novel results will enable the submission of future grants to develop and pilot a support program to facilitate outpatient care, community reintegration and improve outcomes among patients with violence-related spinal cord injury.

Tier 2 Pilot Grants

Four Tier 2 pilot grants were awarded today by the University of Washington Population Health Initiative to teams representing researchers from four different UW schools and colleges and multiple community-based partners. The total dollar value of these awards was approximately $295,000, which included $234,000 in funding from the initiative plus additional matching funds from different schools, colleges, departments and the Office of Global Affairs.

Project Title

Using School Community Collaborative to Address Student Disciplinary Outcomes Linked to School Policing: A Pilot Study

Monica Vavilala, Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center, Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
Marcus Stubblefield, King County Executive Office, Office of Performance, Strategy, and Budget
Keith Hullenaar, Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center, Department of Epidemiology
Eric Bruns, School Mental Health Assessment, Research, & Training Center (SMART), Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
Chelsea Hicks, Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center, Department of Pediatrics

Project abstract
Approximately 1 million youth ages 12 to 17 experience violent victimization annually in US schools. Evidence suggests that 67% of US public high schools use police officers—or school resource officer (SRO) programs—as part of a primary violence prevention strategy to reduce school victimization. However, evidence links SRO programs to increased exclusionary discipline and student arrests, particularly involving students of color and students with disabilities.

We propose a pilot study to collect preliminary data to establish the feasibility, acceptability, and appropriateness of using school-community collaboratives (SCC) to reform existing SRO programs, promote restorative practices, and improve youth safety in Washington public middle and high schools. Our specific aims are 1) To implement SCC pilot programs in three school districts with SROs; 2) To examine variation in feasibility, acceptability, and appropriateness of using SCC programs across school districts with SROs; and 3) To examine whether the SCC program is associated with school safety policy changes and improved school-police relations in school districts with SROs.

This proposed project will continue the work of our successful PHI Tier 1 grant. The preliminary data will be used to refine the SCC model for widespread adoption and justify a randomized-control trial to test the effectiveness of the SCC program on school-level disciplinary outcomes and student-level safety outcomes. This data will be used to apply for a National Institutes of Health R01, a UW PHI Tier 3, and National Institute of Justice and Bureau of Justice Statistics grants to address school violence prevention.