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An Intervention Science to Advance Underrepresented Perspectives and Indigenous Self-Determination in Health

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Abstract

This concluding article to the Supplemental Issue on Promoting Health Equity through Rigorous, Culturally Informed Intervention Science: Innovations with Indigenous Populations in the United States draws themes and conclusions from the innovative practices implemented by the National Institutes of Health Intervention Research to Improve Native American Health (IRINAH) consortium. The IRINAH work highlights promising practices for advancing the diverse and underrepresented perspectives essential to develop and test culturally appropriate, effective health interventions in American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian settings. Four emergent themes appear through the IRINAH work. First, community-based participatory research (CBPR) has provided projects an intersectional worldview for bridging cultures and informing an ethics of local control. Second, culture is fundamental as a central organizing principle in IRINAH research and intervention implementation. Third, crucial demands for sustainability of interventions in Indigenous intervention science require a rethinking of the intervention development process. Finally, tensions persist in Indigenous health research, even as significant strides are made in the field. These themes collectively inform an ethical and rigorous Indigenous intervention science. Collectively, they suggest a roadmap for advancing Indigenous perspectives and self-determination in health intervention research. IRINAH studies are leading innovation in intervention science by advancing applications of CBPR in intervention science, promoting new directions in small populations health research, and demonstrating value of participatory team science.

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Correspondence to Stacy M. Rasmus.

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Rasmus, S.M., Whitesell, N.R., Mousseau, A. et al. An Intervention Science to Advance Underrepresented Perspectives and Indigenous Self-Determination in Health. Prev Sci 21, 83–92 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11121-019-01025-1

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Keywords

  • American Indian/Alaska Native/Native Hawaiian
  • Intervention science
  • Community-based participatory research
  • Team participatory science
  • Ethics
  • Sustainability
  • Indigenous knowledge systems