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Federal Collaboration on Health Disparities Research (FCHDR)


  • Purpose
    • The Federal Collaboration on Health Disparities Research (FCHDR) is a collaboration of federal partners working to find new or improved solutions to eliminate health disparities through research that can influence practice and policy.
    • The purpose of the FCHDR is to
      • Explore the complexity of health disparities elimination to identify new or improved solutions;
      • Coordinate across and between federal agencies to support research that will lead to elimination of health disparities;
      • Support and disseminate innovative research to infuse and enhance services in key public health areas; and
      • Identify priorities for cross-agency collaborations.

  • Description and History
    • The FCHDR is an outgrowth of broader U.S. Department of Health and Human Services efforts to coordinate research and date, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s efforts to develop Advancing the Nation’s Health: A Guide to Public Health Research Needs, 2006-2015 and their Health Protection Goals, all of which emphasize eliminating health disparities.
    • A collaboration between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Office of Minority Health (OMH) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS), and the Interagency Committee on Disabilities Research of the US Department of Education (ICDR) brought together numerous federal partners to form the FCHDR to better advance health disparities research.

  • Focal Research Areas
    • The collaborative has decided to initially focus on four topical areas:
      • Systems-wide approach to reducing obesity in vulnerable and disparate populations
      • Quality indicators for people with multiple diseases and health conditions
      • Culturally appropriate access to mental health care
      • Research into the built environment and vulnerable populations

Four Subject Matter Expert groups (SME’s) have been formed around each of these research areas.


The structure of the Federal Collaboration on Health Disparities Research includes four components: Co-Lead agencies, Steering Committee, Subject-Matter Expert Workgroups and staff support.

  • Co-Leads
    • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Disparities Council (HDC) and the Department of Education Interagency Committee on Disability Research (ICDR) are the co-leads of the Federal Collaboration on Health Disparities Research. HDC and ICDR will have representation on and work jointly with the FCHDR Steering Committee to provide overall advice, direction and guidance.

  • Steering Committee
    • The Steering Committee is comprised of identified agency champions who are scientific, programmatic and/or policy makers with knowledge and expertise in health disparities or targeted health disparities focus areas. A co-chair from each workgroup serves as a liaison member to the Steering Committee.

  • FCHDR Subject Matter Expert (SME) Workgroups
    • The SME Workgroups are formed for selected priority research topic areas and the number of SME workgroups will vary over time. SME workgroups will focus primarily on development of products such as research reports, white papers, journal articles, and ideas for new funding initiatives and other related recommendations for consideration by the Steering Committee.

  • First meeting on May 24, 2006, in Washington, D.C., 74 participants from 10 federal departments identified 165 potential areas for research and multi-agency collaboration, formed a collaborative planning workgroup to guide the future work of FCHDR, and identified the four research priority focus areas for further development.
  • Second meeting, held December 5–6, 2006, in Atlanta, Georgia, 96 participants from six federal departments developed descriptions of research needed for each of the top four focus areas and discussed how to sustain FCHDR.
  • Identified the HHS Disparities Council (HDC) and Department of Education ICDR as Co-Leads of FCHDR.
  • Finalized draft research concepts for the four research priority focus areas identified at the December meeting.
  • Held third meeting on June 14, 2007, in Washington, D.C. where 45 participants from eight federal departments met to develop a Steering Committee and set the future direction of FCHDR.
  • First meeting of the FCHDR Steering Committee was held on September 17, 2007 in Alexandria Virginia. The Operational Plan was approved, and committee discussed necessary next steps and goals for the first 90 days of the Steering Committee/FCHDR .

Current and Future Activities
  • FCHDR will formalize SME workgroups on the four research priority focus areas and determine first year product and goals.

Participating Agencies
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services
    • Office of the Secretary
      • Office of Public Health and Science
        • Office of Minority Health
        • Office of Women’s Health
      • Office for Civil Rights
    • HHS Agencies
      • Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
      • Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
      • Centers for Disease control and Prevention
      • Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
      • Health Resources and Services Administration
      • Indian Health Service
      • National Institute of Health
      • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
  • United States Department of Agriculture
    • Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service
    • Agricultural Research Service
  • United States Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • United States Department of Justice
    • National Institute of Justice
    • National Institute of Corrections
    • Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention
  • United States Department of Education
    • National Research Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research
  • United States Department of Veterans Affairs
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency

Documents and Papers
How to contact the FCHDR

Last Modified: 12/03/2007 02:03:00 PM
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