Chair and Professor Rosanna DeMarco, PhD, RN, PHCNS-BC, APHN-BC, FAAN, has been named the 2015 recipient of the “Excellence in Research Award” given by the New England Regional Black Nurses Association (NERBNA). Rosanna DeMarco is recognized internationally, nationally, and locally for her community service and her successful research initiative. Her program of research focuses on the use of community-based participatory research to identify culturally relevant and gender sensitive prevention interventions with women at risk and living with HIV infection.
“Building capacity and sustainability in prevention interventions needs to be relevant and sensitive to those living with illness in communities,” states DeMarco. “One true way of developing, testing, and disseminating valid interventions in communities that struggle with health disparities and disproportionate disease burden is to involve those individuals, families and communities in conversations about the best way to address practical and useful interventions. Community-engaged research helps those who experience risk and actual disease to participate in a shared research endeavor rather than being ‘researched.’”
Dr. DeMarco has relayed that it is an honor to accept this award by NERBNA. NERBNA—a nationally known organization for African American Nursing advocacy and minority healthcare improvement and awareness—is a perfect example of an effort to apply the essential changes needed to deliver and increase healthcare provision for African Americans as well as other underserved communities. She feels that their passions and support ultimately “maximizes prevention and reduces mortality and morbidity from disease."
The award will be given at the NERBNA annual awards dinner on February 6 at The Marriott Hotel, Copley Plaza. Following her acceptance, DeMarco plans to continue to work actively with health prevention, particularly with the health prevention network called the “Sistah Powah Group,” to advance the health concerns of those women living with HIV locally and globally (Vietnam, Nicaragua, Jamaica). Additionally, she continues to work on a local project proposal to develop a peer navigation system to help women living with HIV be screened and get appropriate care for cervical cancer, for which they are at high risk.
Congratulations to the Chair of Nursing for her tremendous achievement and her continuously great service to the community!