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$7.4 Million in Grants Awarded for American Indian and Alaska Native Research Centers
The Indian Health Service (IHS) and the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), agencies of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), have announced the recipients of approximately $7.4 million in grant funds to support American Indian and Alaska Native biomedical and behavioral research efforts. The funding is from the Native American Research Centers for Health (NARCH) program, which is a partnership led by IHS and NIGMS, and also supported by many other HHS partners.*
This year the NARCH awards total $1.4 million more than last year’s awards, and NIGMS and IHS welcomed two new NIH partners to the NARCH program: the National Human Genome Research Institute and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Twelve NARCH programs have been selected to receive grants for new and/or ongoing projects. Funds for these projects are being released to the recipients this month.
“These research grants are an example of the continuing positive results of collaboration among agencies to improve the health status and reduce health disparities of American Indians and Alaska Natives,” stated Dr. Charles W. Grim, IHS Director. “These research grants are culturally sensitive and strongly supported by tribal communities."
Programs identified for the funding awards are:
• The Albuquerque Area Indian Health Board NARCH program received $1,018,234 for research training and for projects addressing substance abuse interventions, tribal cancer control, incarcerated youth, and community-based participatory research.
• The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium NARCH program received funds amounting to $709,845 for research projects that deal with Alaska Native health issues such as autoimmune liver disease, nicotine exposure, childhood bronchiectasis, and prenatal alcohol exposure.
• The White Mountain Apache Tribe NARCH program was awarded $784,724 for research training and to study the prevention of pneumococcal spread within Apache families as well as to study youth suicide prevention using community-based, participatory research methods.
• Funds in the amount of $777,650 were awarded to the Northwest Portland Area Health Board NARCH program for research and training among the northwest Indian population, including improving research skills for Indian students and health professionals.
• The Indian Health Council, Inc., NARCH program in southern California received $462,581 for training and for research into the burden on caregivers of frail elders.
• The Inter-tribal Council of Arizona NARCH program received $264,811 for the training of American Indian and Alaska Native students, faculty, and health professionals in health research skills.
• The Black Hills Center for American Indian Health NARCH program was awarded $841,260 to study traditional Lakota healing, colorectal cancer screening interventions among the Lakota, and a clinical and public health research training project.
• Funds in the amount of $250,000 were awarded to the California Rural Indian Health
Board NARCH program to study preventable hospitalizations.
• The Aberdeen Area Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board NARCH program received funds in the amount of $461,552 to study insulin resistance in American Indian youth, asthma among Northern Plains Indian youth, and validating depression and anxiety measures for American Indians.
• The Chickasaw Nation Health System NARCH program received $656,284 for research training and to study the prevention of fetal alcohol syndrome and rheumatic disease in Oklahoma tribal members.
• The Great Lakes Inter-tribal Council of Wisconsin NARCH program received $492,374 for its student research training project and to study breast cancer risk and screening patterns in American Indian women.
• Alaska’s Southcentral Foundation NARCH program was awarded $525,174 for its study on the ethical and cultural implications of specimen banks.
* Other NIH or HHS funding partners are: The National Institute on Allergy and Infectious Disease, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Cancer Institute, the NIH Office of Research on Women's Health, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.