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UWPRC Small Grant Projects

2022-23 Small Grant Projects

Guadalupe Aguilera
Guadalupe Aguilera, PhD

Postdoctoral Trainee
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology

A qualitative assessment of foreign-born persons’ long-term care needs after stillbirth

Many groups of foreign-born persons experience stillbirth more commonly than the general US population, leading to negative long-term health and economic consequences. Dr. Aguilera will identify the long-term mental health care and economic needs of foreign-born persons following a stillbirth experience as the first step in developing an inclusive long-term model of care to improve bereaved parents’ mental health and family wellbeing.

Laura Swan

Laura E. T. Swan, PhD, LCSW 

Postdoctoral Research Associate
Department of Population Health Sciences

Patient perceptions of coercion in contraceptive care

Patients may experience pressure or force to use or not to use contraception based on the personal beliefs and biases of healthcare providers. With the goal of helping to reduce disparities and promote health equity, Dr. Swan will document the prevalence of contraceptive coercion in the Midwestern United States and examine the associations between patient perceptions of coercion in contraceptive care and reproductive autonomy.


Andrew Hryckowian

Andrew J. Hryckowian, PhD

Assistant Professor
Department of Medicine
Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology

Determinants of adult gastrointestinal Group B Streptococcus carriage

Using intrapartum antibiotic prophylaxis (IAP) to treat asymptomatic Group B Streptococcus (GBS) in pregnancy increases the risk of non-GBS infections and long-term health consequences in parents treated with IAP and their infants. Dr. Hryckowian aims to understand the host-and microbiome-driven factors influencing GBS carriage in adults to inform the development of alternative treatments and reduce GBS transmission to infants.

2021-22 Small Grant Projects

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Janean Dilworth-Bart, PhD, MS

The School of Human Ecology

Centering community voices of parents and caregivers of children 0-11 years old in Wisconsin through community-led conversations to support health, wellness, and well-being for children and families

Inequities contribute to poor health and well-being outcomes for children and families. To address this, the UW-Madison Prenatal to Five Initiative (P25) has developed a partnership with Healthy Early (a cross-sector, statewide partnership) and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ Maternal and Child Health Program (MCH). Healthy Early, the MCH program, and P25 initiative have separately identified health and wellness priorities from stakeholder surveys and are further wanting to center equity and community voice in ongoing and future efforts. ‘Ground-truthing’ these priorities with community members is desperately needed, especially within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and increased awareness of racial inequities. In 2020, partners identified and piloted the concept of community-led conversations as a potential means for engaging and empowering parents and caregivers who are most impacted by health disparities.

This project seeks to:

  1. further utilize community-led conversations specifically with the Latinx community;
  2. retrospectively evaluate, through a survey, if community-led conversations (from 2020, 2021, and within this project) are effective in capturing community voices; and
  3. understand how the findings generated from community conversations could facilitate action (within community, within organizations, agencies and associations’ priorities and resource allocation, and within academic institution’s future research

Tuyen Huynh, PhD, MS

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Holly Hatton-Bowers, PhD

University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Children, Youth and Family Studies

A community-based pilot feasibility study to adapt the CHIME+ Program to build resilience among minoritized families

Family resilience is dependent on individual emotional well-being and strong family relationships, which are key protective factors associated with effective emotion regulation and positive child development. Unfortunately, poor parent emotional well-being is tightly linked with high parenting stress, resulting in less sensitive parenting approaches (e.g., emotional unavailability) and undermining critical regulatory processes related to adaptive emotion regulation and secure parent-child relationship necessary for the development and sustainability of family resilience. Specifically, racial/ethnic minority families disadvantaged by poverty and health disparities can exhibit elevated parenting stress and may lack intrapersonal coping resources required to consistently engage in responsive caregiving in a stressful environment, heightened by economic hardship. In partnership with the United Methodist Children’s Services in Wisconsin, the goal of this study is to systematically adapt and implement a community-based mindfulness-based program, Cultivating Healthy Intentional Mindful Educators + Families (CHIME+), with low-income, racial/ethnic minority families with young children.The overarching goal is to equip parents with mindfulness skills that are feasible to implement and acceptable to them for use in promoting their own emotional well-being (e.g., reducing parenting stress), with anticipated positive spillover effects into their parenting behaviors. Conducting this study will have a three-fold impact, including (1) generating the pertinent knowledge required to successfully adapt the CHIME+ program to  meet parents’ needs specifically, (2) ensuring the long-term sustainability of the program to improve the well-being of families with young children in Wisconsin, thereby contributing to efforts to promote health equity, and (3) providing preliminary findings to support future subsequent RCT studies of the CHIME+ program with this population.

2020-21 Small Grant Projects

Abraham Olufunmilola

Olufunmilola Abraham, PhD, MS, BPharm

School of Pharmacy
Social and Administrative Sciences Division

Assessing the feasibility of utilizing a game-based participatory approach to co-create personalized family opioid medication safety plans

The misuse of prescription opioids is a challenging problem that continues to significantly affects youth and families. This research study will assess the feasibility of utilizing a game-based participatory approach to preventing prescription opioid misuse while facilitating safe and responsible use of medications among diverse families. The long term goal of this project is to develop a MEDSMA℞T Family Toolkit that provides a clear framework and engaging approach for facilitating parent-teen communication about medication safety in homes. This pilot study will generate preliminary data for future development of a Medication Safety and Adolescent Communication Toolkit (MEDSMA℞T Families).

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Ann Allen, MD

Department of Pediatrics

Pilot testing an evidence-based, family-centered intervention for opioid exposed newborns in Wisconsin’s rural and community hospitals

The goal of this project is to develop and pilot an Eat, Sleep, Console (ESC) implementation intervention across Wisconsin community and rural hospitals by creating educational resources, and collaborating with the Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care (WAPC) and Wisconsin Perinatal Quality Collaborative (WisPQC). ESC is an evidence-based treatment for newborns exposed to opioids, which affects nearly 1 in 100 Wisconsin newborns. By conducting this study, the team hopes to reduce unnecessary hospital days, healthcare costs and parent-child bonding disruption in Wisconsin infants exposed to opioids, and simultaneously generate the tools and preliminary data to support widespread implementation of ESC in states and health systems.

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Jessica Pac, PhD, M.Phil, MPA

School of Social Work

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Alejandra Ros Pilarz, PhD, MA

School of Social Work

The effects of state pregnancy accommodation laws on maternal and infant health

Expectant mothers’ labor force participation increased dramatically during the past 50 years. Yet, policy accommodations to protect their workforce participation have not kept pace. To date, 27 states have passed laws that require employers to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant women. By enabling pregnant women to remain employed under safe working conditions, these laws have the potential to prevent maternal and infant morbidities and mortality through prolonged employment and earnings and retention of health insurance and maternity leave eligibility. This project will provide novel evidence on the effects of state pregnancy accommodation laws on maternal and infant health.

Photo of Leigh Senderowicz

Leigh Senderowicz, ScD, MPH

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Understanding structural barriers to contraceptive autonomy among low-income Black African women in the Global South: An exploratory study

Contraceptive autonomy — a person’s ability to decide for themselves what they want in regards to contraceptive use, and then to realize that decision — is an essential element of maternal and reproductive health equity, but this multidimensional construct has been difficult to define and measure. This study uses qualitative methods (in-depth interviews and focus group discussions) to generate a nuanced understanding of contraceptive autonomy among low-income Black African women of reproductive age living in a Global South setting.  The analysis will focus on multiple dimensions of choice and access to rights-based reproductive health care.

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