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Clark Univ. and City of Worcester Form Academic Health Partnership

Thursday, February 27, 2014

 

Clark University and the City of Worcester announced Wednesday the creation of an Academic Health Department, the result of a partnership combining scholarship and practice to improve public health.

The city’s Division of Public Health and the University’s Mosakowski Institute for Public Enterprise, together through the Academic Health Department, will harness a variety of relationships and, based upon consideration of local needs and resources, will focus on:

  • Community engagement/Improve the public’s health

The ultimate goal is to ensure that prevention and intervention efforts are supported by science and effective practice to improve the public’s health through the Community Health Improvement Plan.

  • Student education/Workforce development

Engaging with timely, relevant topics to increase knowledge and skills, this two-way communication contributes to both workforce development and faculty connection with practitioners.

  • Practice-focused research

Relevant research opportunities are identified as stakeholders discuss needs, emphasizing the iterative cycle where research translates to practice and practice informs research.

  • Shared funding opportunities

Existing resources may be leveraged or new ones identified through collaboration.

“We’re gratified to play a key role in this collaboration, which should benefit the city as well as the University,” said Clark University President David P. Angel. “Clark’s intellectual resources and foundation of student engagement in the community make the University a valuable ally in this effort to improve and transform public health in Worcester and beyond.”

In 2013, Worcester announced its Community Health Improvement Plan, a roadmap to making Worcester “the healthiest city in New England by 2020,” particularly by improving outcomes among residents in need of improved living conditions and better access to consistent, high-quality care.

Creation of the Academic Health Department marks the beginning of a new offensive to improve health outcomes for Worcester residents facing poor nutrition, untreated mental illness, violence and injury. The goal is to foster healthy behaviors that will curtail more serious illnesses later on — in effect improving lives, cutting treatment costs and preserving communities.

For more information, contact the Mosakowski Institute for Public Enterprise, at 508-421-3872 or mosakowskiinstitute@clarku.edu.

 

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