Posted by Susan Halpin on December 3rd, 2019
Posted in: Blog, Funded Project, NLM Resources, Patient Engagement, Public Health
Tags: American Indian Population Health, cervical cancer, HPV, HPV immunization, HPV-related cancers, oral health and HPV, Oral HPV Toolkit
The following blog post is about a current NER-funded grant project. The post was written by the Team Maureen organization, Dr. Allesandro Villa, Lisa Bennett Johnson and Kelly Welch.
No one should die of an HPV-related cancer. Dr. Alessandro Villa from the Division of Oral Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard School of Dental Medicine and Team Maureen, a nonprofit dedicated to ending cervical cancer by educating about HPV, have utilized NNLM funds this year to work toward that auspicious goal. Together, they are conducting HPV-related cancer education among health care providers working with American Indian and Alaskan Native (AI/AN) populations across the US with the long-term goal of decreasing the disease burden and mortality rates from preventable HPV-related cancers.
Based on information from an assessment done by Dr. Andria Apostolou of the Indian Health Service, it was clear that oral health care providers serving AI/AN populations were lacking important training and information on HPV and were also receptive to increasing their role in HPV prevention. Team Maureen and Dr. Villa, who have worked together on numerous other oral HPV related projects, combined efforts to meet these needs in partnership with the Indian Health Service’s Division of Oral Health.
The program, HPV Educational Interventions in American Indian Populations, is working to engage with Tribal oral health providers and connect them to high quality resources and materials about HPV. One of these resources was a custom-made Oral HPV Toolkit, adapted by Team Maureen to be specific to the AI/AN population and their health care system. A key component of the Toolkit highlights the resources of NNLM including PubMed, Medline and MedlinePlus, where providers can find quality information for themselves, and for their patients.
Both the Toolkit and NNLM reference materials were presented during the key note at the Dental Updates conference in June 2019 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Over 150 providers attended the key note presentation delivered by Dr. Villa. Team Maureen hosted an educational table where attendees could ask questions and receive additional resources, including a physical copy of the newly adapted Toolkit and NNLM reference sheet.
Based on post-program survey data, most of the providers who attended the program significantly improved their knowledge about HPV related cancers and current HPV immunization guidelines. The providers look forward to educating their patients about cancer prevention and the importance of the HPV vaccine.
Although efforts will continue on this project throughout the year, recent accomplishments and highlights to date will be presented by Indian Health Service’s Nathan Mork, DDS at the 7th Annual HPV-Related Cancer Summit on December 6th in Marlborough, MA. Registration is open to all medical and dental providers at www.tinyurl.com/HPVSummit2019.
For more information about the Team Maureen organization, visit their website https://teammaureen.org/