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Prog Community Health Partnersh. 2007 Fall;1(3):249-56. doi: 10.1353/cpr.2007.0028.

Using community-based participatory research to shape policy and prevent lead exposure among Native American children.

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1
School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley, USA.

Abstract

PROBLEM:

In the mid 1990s, the Indian Health Service (IHS) observed that the percent of Native American children in northeast Oklahoma with elevated blood lead levels was higher than in other comparable areas. Tribal Efforts Against Lead (TEAL) was designed and implemented to study and address this problem using a lay health advisor model.

PURPOSE:

Using a case study approach, we studied the impacts of this community-based participatory research (CBPR) project on health-promoting public policy. We present TEAL's advocacy and policy steps, activities, and accomplishments in the policy arena, and recommendations for others interested in using CBPR to promote healthy public policy.

KEY POINTS:

Using a CBPR approach that incorporates Native American social networks can be effective in helping to achieve policy changes to address lead poisoning in a rural community.

CONCLUSION:

Using a CBPR approach that incorporated Native American social networks, TEAL played a major role in placing and maintaining lead poisoning on the policy agenda and in encouraging the local County Health Department and IHS to fully implement blood lead screening and parental notification for young children.

PMID:
20208287
DOI:
10.1353/cpr.2007.0028
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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