Dr. Collette Ncube, Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences, was awarded a competitive 5-year K01 award from National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) at NIH, for her grant titled “Understanding racial and ethnic disparities in preterm birth: a systems science approach”.
The mortality, morbidity and societal economic costs associated with preterm birth disproportionately burden underserved U.S. racial/ethnic minority populations with persistently higher documented rates. Intermediary determinants, including individual and interpersonal level factors, and structural determinants such as healthcare, community and societal level factors, are posited contributors to racial/ethnic disparities. However, researchers have not examined how these determinants influence preterm birth disparities within a racialized social system. The goal of this project is to address significant gaps in our understanding of how structural and intermediary determinants of health interact and function interdependently to generate and perpetuate racial/ethnic preterm birth disparities using system dynamics methodology.