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Incorporating Community Engagement in Primary Care Research Training: Eleven-Year Outcomes. Prog Community Health Partnersh 2020;14(1):63-74



Pubmed ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-85083248928 (requires institutional sign-in at Scopus site)   1 Citation


BACKGROUND: In response to a local workforce need for community-engaged scholars, a community-based participatory research (CBPR) curriculum was incorporated into an established primary care research fellowship. The program prepares researchers to partner with at-risk communities to address root causes and cultural, linguistic, and systems barriers that contribute to health disparities.

OBJECTIVES: To describe the context, design, implementation and evaluation of the Academic Fellowship in Primary Care and Community-Engaged Research.

METHODS: The traditional primary care research curriculum was enhanced with expanded enrollment, including social scientists with complementary expertise to physician fellows; a structured CBPR seminar series; involvement of fellows in mentored community-academic partnership projects with progression to independence; and relevant teaching and mentoring experiences.

EVALUATION: Between 2007 and 2016, 22 fellows enrolled, with 16 in the CBPR track. Fellows demonstrated significant prepost gain in self-assessed competency in CBPR. During their 2- to 3-year training period, each CBPR fellow developed at least one community-academic partnership project, and they collectively produced more than 50 articles and 70 regional or national presentations, and mentored 29 medical student projects. Graduates have assumed leadership positions in academia, and have improved institutional capacity for community-engaged research, teaching, and practice.

CONCLUSIONS: Important factors related to success and feasibility of CBPR training within a 2- to 3-year timeframe were having dedicated, experienced faculty mentors with existing authentic, trusted community partners, and dedicated funding for new community-academic partnership projects. This model can prepare primary care researchers and teachers to genuinely collaborate with vulnerable communities to address important health priorities and advance health equity.

Author List

Meurer LN, DeNomie M, Morzinski JA, Nelson DA, Meurer JR, Chandler TE, Ahmed S


Linda N. Meurer MD, MPH Professor in the Family Medicine department at Medical College of Wisconsin
John R. Meurer MD, MBA Institute Director, Professor in the Institute for Health and Equity department at Medical College of Wisconsin
David A. Nelson PhD Professor in the Family Medicine department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Capacity Building
Community-Based Participatory Research
Community-Institutional Relations
Health Services Research
Primary Health Care
Research Personnel