The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is giving Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine $5.3 million for research into public health issues in New Orleans. The CDC renewed a five-year, $5.3 million grant for Tulane's Prevention Research Center (PRC), a research and policy organization that studies the impact physical and social environments have on obesity and public health. The grant is part of a program that funds a network of 35 centers nationwide that research disease prevention and control.
In New Orleans, the grant will be used to improve access and consumption of healthy foods in the city's neighborhoods. PRC director Diego Rose says her group will work with community partners to make it easier for residents of all neighborhoods to obtain healthy foods, which she says is critical to improving the vitality of communities. The latest grant is the third the PRC has received from the CDC. Previously the PRC focused on identifying and addressing barriers to physical activity in the St. Roch/St. Claude community. Part of the program included adding a walking path on the neutral ground of St. Roch Avenue and adding staff to keep a playground at Drew Elementary School open to children after school. With its first grant, the PRC researched environmental issues including reducing local children's exposure to lead. — Graves