The University of Maryland School of Medicine Program in Minority Health and Health Disparities Education and Research (PMHHD) educates current and future health professionals about issues related to health disparities, supports relevant multidisciplinary research and fosters quality clinical care for minorities and diverse populations. Claudia Baquet, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine and Associate Dean for Policy and Planning, was appointed director of the program in July 2008.
The PMHHD offers a curriculum to assist students and trainees in understanding the importance of cultural and ethnic differences in providing quality health care and encourage a rigorous scientific approach to the identification, investigation, and elimination of minority health disparities.
According to Dr. Baquet, the program demonstrates the commitment of the University of Maryland School of Medicine to quality medical education, clinical care and research. "The overall goal of this program is to foster the highest quality education and research on minority health and health disparities through a formalized curriculum, which ultimately leads to improved clinical outcomes and reduction or elimination in disparities," says Dr. Baquet.
The program has three core areas of focus: education, research and clinical outcomes. It implements a curriculum that focuses on undergraduate medical education, faculty development, training and continuing medical education. It also develops tools to systematically define, measure, and assess health disparities, develop prevention and intervention strategies for delaying the onset or progression of diseases which contribute to health disparities, develop new and improved screening and diagnostic modalities and therapeutic approaches, and advance the understanding of etiologic and progressive factors of diseases where disparities exist in vulnerable populations. The anticipated impact on clinical outcomes will be the prevention of bias in clinical care and the elimination of treatment disparities.