The Meharry Center for the Study of Social Determinants of Health will be a $7.5-million center funded by JUUL Labs.
The center will focus on research and community outreach programs regarding tobacco and other nicotine use.
“Meharry is driven by a mission to improve the health of underserved communities, yet we have historically found ourselves occupying the last seat at the table when research is conducted on emerging public health issues that affect our patients,” said James E.K. Hildreth, president and CEO of Meharry Medical College. “The new Center for the Study of Social Determinants of Health will advance our efforts to understand the impact of larger societal issues on health and wellbeing, and there are few issues requiring more research today than the rising prevalence of e-cigarettes, including how they affect young people.”
The center’s first initiative will be to conduct independent research on the public health impact of tobacco and nicotine-delivery products, convene annual meetings to drive a national conversation on tobacco and nicotine-delivery products, and develop public health campaigns geared toward educating the youth about the dangers of tobacco.
Meharry Medical College is the nation’s largest private, independent historically black academic health sciences center.