Health Humanities and Arts Research Collaborative awards seed grants to 3 interdisciplinary, interprofessional research teams

LAWRENCE – The Health Humanities and Arts Research Collaborative (HHARC) at the University of Kansas has made part of its mission to support existing and emerging collaborative research at the intersection of health and humanities and arts disciplines. Along these lines, HHARC has awarded a second round of seed grant funding to support the initial stages of three research projects.

These grants made possible by the Office of Research invite applicants to develop research questions that require the experience of researchers and practitioners across disciplines and professions, and through community engagement as a member of the team. Additionally, teams are asked to build in a mentorship component so that student researchers can contribute to and learn from the collaborative experiences. 

The spring 2022 projects:

"Narrative Medicine: Investigating A Tool to Improve Patient Care in Physical Therapy Practice," led by Jessica Lemus, KU alumna in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program, now with Bird Physical Therapy practice; Stacia Troshynski Brown, clinical assistant professor of physical therapy; Hyunjin Seo, Oscar Stauffer Chair in Journalism at KU; and Nicole Marie Klevanskaya (Konopelko), junior in journalism and Russian studies. They will examine the capacity of narrative medicine to improve physical therapy experiences for patients and practitioners. In their project, patients will develop a narrative with a student journalist trained in storytelling prior to meeting their physical therapist. This project will help physical therapists better understand the narrative of the patient so that they can treat them more holistically and thus improve the patient experience in health care. This proposed project comes at a time when patient concerns are voiced about their health care providers not listening fully. Simultaneously, health care providers have less time with patients and are experiencing burnout. Improving patient/provider connection through storytelling to impact patient outcomes is at the heart of this project. The team received $3,080 to fund this work.

"Envisioning Racism and Repair: An Oral History and Photovoice Project," led by Jason Glenn, associate professor of history and philosophy of medicine; Jill Peltzer, associate professor of nursing; Crystal Lumpkins, associate professor of family medicine & community health; and Carmaletta Williams, executive director of the Black Archives of Mid-America. Their proposed work addresses the central, two-part question of “How can academic medical centers repair the harms caused by 1) centuries of neglect, exploitation and abuse of people of color in clinical encounters, and 2) biomedical systems of knowledge that have justified this mistreatment by generating and upholding theories of race, racial difference, and racial inferiority?” This question will be examined as part of a larger initiative at KU Medical Center that aims to address racism in health care with a curricular lens. Through the use of one-on-one interviews and PhotoVoice, this project will employ methods from oral history and visual ethnography to collect community experiences of harm. Results will be validated with the community members, who will work with the research team to construct an oral history archive and ultimately an exhibition to be on view at the Black Archives. The team received $3,500 for this work.

"Community Conversations in Sustainability: Building Momentum to Bridge Climate and Health Across KU Campuses and the Community," led by Shelley Bhattacharya, associate professor of family medicine and community health; Terrianne Lavin, assistant teaching professor in geography & atmospheric science; and Humberto Lugo, executive director of CleanAirNow. Their study centers a need to understand local effects of climate change on health and its disproportionate effects across populations. Through public programming that spans KU Lawrence and Medical Center campuses and with community leadership from Wyandotte County and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, these events will bring to light in new ways the direct impacts of climate change on health in local communities. This series of events will culminate in an intercommunity event in spring 2023 to showcase the many perspectives shared throughout the series and illustrate new connections and partnerships made toward addressing climate justice and effects on health. The team received $3,500 for this work.

The Health Humanities and Arts Research Collaborative is a cross-institutional group that invites new and current members into conversation to create connections across professionals and among researchers; share funding opportunities around humanities, arts, health and wellness; and offer a platform for collaboration around existing and emerging health-related challenges. HHARC’s co-facilitators are Tamara Falicov, associate dean in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Katie Rhine, associate professor of geography & atmospheric science and African & African-American studies; Teri Kennedy, associate dean of interprofessional practice, education, policy, and research at the School of Nursing and professor at the KU School of Medicine; and Emily Ryan, director of The Commons.

Tue, 02/22/2022


Emily Ryan

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Emily Ryan

The Commons