Café Scientifique: Less Talk, More Action: Accelerating Innovative Strategies to Eliminate Health Disparities

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Stephen Thomas, Professor of Health Services Administration, Director of Maryland Center for Health Equity, University of Maryland
Time of Event: 
Thursday, January 28, 2016 - 18:30


49 West Coffeehouse, Wine Bar and Gallery
49 West Street
Annapolis, Maryland

The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC) organizes the Annapolis Café Scientifique—a place where, for the price of a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, anyone can come to explore the latest ideas in science and technology.

There is never a cover charge for Café Scientifique!

Please note: seating is limited.

Reservations are strongly suggested and sometimes required depending on attendance. Please call (410) 626-9796 to guarantee your seat or, just as importantly, to cancel your reservation so someone on the waitlist may attend.

About this Café

In 2007, 12-year-old Deamonte Driver of Prince George's County died from an untreated dental infection.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, although most oral diseases are preventable, many individuals do not seek dental services for reasons such as cost, lack of dental insurance, or lack of access to dental services. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene reports that for 2012, almost 20% of Maryland residents surveyed had not visited a dentist within the past five years. While the Affordable Care Act provides dental coverage for children and for pregnant women in Maryland, many adults still lack dental coverage.

In September 2014, the University of Maryland Terrapins’ basketball court was transformed into a mobile dental clinic to provide more than $1 million of free dental care to 1,029 underserved, uninsured, and underinsured adults. The dental clinic was part of the two-day Mission of Mercy and Health Equity Festival, sponsored by the University of Maryland School of Public Health’s Center for Health Equity, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, the Maryland State Dental Association, and others and involved 1,462 volunteers, including community leaders, health professionals, social work and journalism students, and 560 oral health professionals.

This Café will illustrate how the Mission of Mercy and Health Equity Festival moved beyond the traditional “health fair” to be a venue for transformative fourth-generation health disparities research, complete with opportunities for inter-professional education and the integration of oral, medical, and public health service delivery.

About Dr. Thomas

Stephen B. Thomas, PhD, is Founding Director of the Maryland Center for Health Equity and Professor of Health Services Administration in the University of Maryland School of Public Health. Dr. Thomas is one of the nation's leading scholars on community-based interventions to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities including obesity, diabetes, hypertension, HIV AIDS, and violence. He is Principal Investigator of the Center of Excellence on Race, Ethnicity and Disparities Research funded by the NIH-National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD). This five-year $5.9M grant award, launched in August 2012, includes teams of scientists conducting targeted research on obesity, vaccine acceptance, and men’s health. Dr. Thomas is also Principal Investigator (with Dr. Quinn) on the NIH-NIMHD National Bioethics Research Infrastructure Initiative “Building Trust Between Minorities and Researchers” focused on delivery of scientifically sound and culturally relevant research with racial and ethnic minority populations. He served as the Philip Hallen Professor of Community Health and Social Justice at the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Public Health (2000–2010). In 2010, he received the Dorothy Nyswander Social Justice Award from the Society for Public Health Education. He was awarded the 2005 David Satcher Award from the Directors of Health Promotion and Education for his leadership in reducing health disparities through the improvement of health promotion and health education programs at the state and local levels and received the 2004 Alonzo Smyth Yerby Award from the Harvard School of Public Health for his work with people suffering the health effects of poverty.

Click here for more information about the Annapolis Café Scientifique.

Event type: 
Café Scientifique
Event Attendance: 
Open to the Public
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