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Methods for Fostering a Community Academic Partnership in a Firefighter Community

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Objectives: To describe how a community academic partnership (CAP) created a cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention program for firefighters. Methods: Principles of community based participatory research (CBPR) were integrated with intervention mapping (IM) to guide the development of a physical activity program. Results: Key elements of the CAP program include instituting annual CVD screenings; creating a department-wide program and a pilot intervention for high-risk firefighters; training firefighters to become peer health mentors; improving access to physical activity equipment; instituting policy to promote physical activity, and validating instrumentation for assessing cardiorespiratory fitness. Conclusions: Integrating CBPR with IM was an efficacious approach for engaging firefighters in research for developing an ecological approach to cardiovascular health in firefighters.
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Keywords: CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH; COMMUNITY BASED PARTICIPATORY RESEARCH; FIREFIGHTERS; INTERVENTION MAPPING

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Health Education and Behavior, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA. [email protected] 2: Department of Epidemiology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA 3: Department of Health Education and Behavior, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA 4: Alachua County Fire Rescue, Alachua County, FL, USA

Publication date: November 1, 2013

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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