Working to create a responsive and learning healthcare system to address disparities in health and healthcare.
Health disparities hurt us all
Health disparities are a major global public health issue. They increase incidence, prevalence, mortality or burden of disease disproportionately among specific populations. Health disparities hinder healthcare developments that would help us all.
In the U.S.
~ excess medical care 
costs per year
~ lost worker productivity 
per year 
~ people in populations 
groups at risk of disparities
34 year
gap in life expectancy 
across countries
children die every day of 
treatable diseases.
people put in poverty due to healthcare costs.
Together we advance
the state of healthcare
Our Approach
A learning and responsive health care system will improve
the quality of care and population health for all of us.
Identify Root Causes

Advance scientific understanding of the causes of health disparities

Multi-Site Studies

Create and improve scientific methods, metrics, measures, and tools to study the causes of health disparities

Dissemination and Implementation Science

Creating and publicizing effective interventions that bridge the gaps in health and healthcare outcomes.

Raising Awareness

Problems of this scale require a united effort from faculty, students, community members, and leading experts from various disciplines.

Explore Our Work


    36.9M people live with HIV globally and 1.1M live with HIV in the US. 940k died in 2017 due to HIV. This epidemic disproportionately affects minority and low income populations.



    Screening, brief intervention and referral to treatment (SBIRT) is a proven technique to reduce substance abuse.


    HIV & Social Support

    The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of social support on depression and health behaviors among African Americans who are 50+ and living with HIV


    Breast Cancer

    Breast Cancer remains one of the leading causes of cancer deaths. African American women are significantly more likely to die from breast cancer despite high screening rates.


    Project R.E.A.C.H.

    Project R.E.A.C.H. (Recover, Empower, Adapt, Cope and Heal) is a mHealth intervention study that aims to improve health outcomes by educating underserved women who are fighting breast cancer.


STUDY Although screening, brief intervention and referral to treatment (SBIRT) is a proven technique that has been shown in some health care settings to reduce substance there is limited data available for it effectiveness among HIV care settings. HIV+ individuals have high rates of substance abuse but access to intervention is limited. Substance abuse increases the risk for poor treatment adherence and is a recognized contributor to the spread of HIV. There is a need to develop treatments specifically for HIV+ individuals. We aim to implement SBIRT in HIV care settings to optimize health outcomes. This protocol describes an assessment of SBIRT feasibility and acceptability in the UF Health Infectious Disease-Medical Specialties Clinic at the University of Florida. One hundred participants will be recruited from the Clinic. The intervention group will receive a brief intervention, referral to treatment, and peer navigator support. The control group will receive screening and standard referral to treatment as seen in high-quality usual care. The primary study outcomes are feasibility and acceptability of the SBIRT model. Secondary outcomes include engagement in substance use treatment and reduction in alcohol and drug use.


STUDY Project SUPPORT examines the role of social support, affective states and health behaviors among African Americans 50 and older living with HIV. In partnership with the UF CARES (Center for AIDS Research Education and Service) Jacksonville, we recruited 96 HIV+ men and women age 50 and older who identify as Black. The investigators will use data obtained from Project Support to enhance our understanding of the psychosocial and behavioral influences impacting people aging with HIV in order to develop effective interventions that promote positive health outcomes in this population. The intervention Research Advancing Care Equality (iRACE) laboratory -Nicole Ennis, PI- in conjunction with the University of Florida / SHARC will serve as the analysis unit for the study.

Project R.E.A.C.H.

STUDY Project R.E.A.C.H. (Recover, Empower, Adapt, Cope, and Heal) is an mHealth intervention study that aims to understand the best way to disseminate health information to underserved women coping with breast cancer. We recently created this intervention which combines support and health information into a digital format for broader reach. The purpose of Project R.E.A.C.H. is to test the acceptability of this mHealth intervention and measure its influence on health related quality of life. We use 10 short, highly engaging films to deliver valuable breast cancer health information content and structured support consistently delivered over a ten-week period to engage patients in self-management of their treatment process. Successful completion of Project R.E.A.C.H. will provide pilot data needed to examine clinical outcomes in this population. The expected result of this work is the creation of an effective mHealth intervention with broad national reach that will improve mortality in low income Black women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Research Milestones

iRACE Lab Welcomes N...

Dr. Ennis and Collea...

iRACE Lab Welcomes 2 Interns

CTBScience Investiga...

Dr. Ennis Launches C...

Congratulations to D...

Improving Cannabis S...

Drs. Ennis, Butame, ...

Drs. Armas and Ennis...

iRACE Lab Visits UF ...

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