Barrett Appointed to National Health Disparities Role

September 12, 2017
By: Julie Poucher Harbin, Writer, DCI

Nadine J. Barrett, PhDNadine J. Barrett, PhD, inaugural director of Duke Cancer Institute’s Office of Health Equity and Disparities (OHED), has been appointed as a member of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Advisory Panel on Addressing Health Disparities.

The institute is an independent, non-profit organization authorized by the U.S. Congress to fund research that will provide patients, their caregivers, and clinicians with the evidence-based information needed to make better-informed healthcare decisions.

Barrett will join other panel members in helping PCORI refine and prioritize research funding priorities and ensure that the research PCORI supports centers on outcomes that matter to patients and other healthcare decision makers. 

Barrett was selected based on her experience, expertise, and ability to contribute to the panel’s tasks and responsibilities. Panel members represent a broad range of healthcare stakeholder groups and perspectives, including patients, family caregivers, clinicians, drug and device makers, and researchers, among others.

"This provides another exciting opportunity for us to make a positive an impact on patient outcomes and eliminating heath disparities on a national level, and I am thrilled to serve in this role,” said Barrett. “I look forward to working with my peers to shape research priorities that reflect outcomes that matter to patients, caregivers, and the broader community, and particularly within the context of health equity. “

Under Barrett’s direction, DCI’s Office of Health Equity and Disparities (OHED) has developed a five-step roadmap for conducting health assessments designed to reduce cancer disparities and improve population health through community partnerships, including from the African American, Latino, and Asian communities, and is building relationships with the Muslim and LGBTQ communities as well. 

In addition to her leadership role at OHED, Barrett directs the Community Engagement Core within the Duke CTSA and the Center for Community and Population Health Improvement, and is on faculty within the Division of Community Health in the Duke School of Medicine. As a medical sociologist, she’s devoted her more than 15-year career to reducing health disparities among disadvantaged and vulnerable populations and effectively training healthcare and research professionals and trainees in community engagement, diversity and inclusion.

The nomination of Barrett to the PCORI panel came from the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC), which will officially present OHED with the 2017 Innovator Award for Community Engagement and Outreach at its 34th National Oncology Conference, October 18 through October 20, in Nashville, Tennessee. Duke Cancer Institute is among 10 cancer centers named by the association to receive its 2017 Innovator Award. More information about the PCORI Advisory Panel on Addressing Health Disparities, including its scope of work and a list of all members, is available on its website.