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UMD Part of $12M Grant Research Team to Improve Health Care Access for Chronic Disease Patients

By Maryland Today Staff

Communication Professor Linda Aldoory and Cynthia Baur, endowed chair and director of the School of Public Health’s Horowitz Center for Health Literacy, are part of a research team that’s received a five-year, $12 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to improve access to health care for the estimated 1.2 million people with chronic diseases in Prince George’s, Calvert, Charles and St. Mary’s counties.

The project aims to improve treatment resources, prevention programs and general health for patients at high risk for diabetes, heart disease and stroke. As the project’s health communication lead, Aldoory will develop and implement messaging intended to raise awareness of diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and increase participation in programs for prevention and disease management.

The Center for Health Literacy will work with the counties’ health departments to convene community meetings and focus groups on how to make diabetes prevention programs more relevant to those who qualify but don't enroll. The center will also work with community members to create messages and materials about diabetes prevention programs, and advise the counties on the most effective ways to distribute them.

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