Texas Southern University has launched the Center for Transformative Health, an initiative to reconstruct, strengthen and enhance the conditions that promote health through research, community engagement and education.
The center is in partnership with the City of Houston. It was first announced by Houston mayor Sylvester Turner during his winter commencement address.
The mission of the CTH is to employ evidence-based practices that strengthen and enhance the conditions that promote overall health and well-being for students, faculty, staff, and the surrounding community. It will serve as a resource center for the city of Houston that will focus on health disparities of minority citizens. Statistics have shown that African American and Hispanic citizens living in urban settings were hit the hardest and suffered the most during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In minority communities, the pandemic has been a magnifier for common health problems underscoring the need for a public health agenda beyond COVID-19,” said Center for Transformative Health Executive Director Zuri Dale. “These three years have necessitated ongoing health initiatives to prevent and manage disease occurrence while improving livability to transform lives. We are proud to launch the Center for Transformative Health to be a catalyst for better health outcomes.”
The objectives and activities of the Center align with the City of Houston Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention objectives related to improved health outcomes and increased education. The Center’s overall initiative is structured around 4 objectives:
- Design opportunities that address the prevention and control of infectious disease while implementing local programs that prevent chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease
- Expend access to mental health resources and providers
- Continue to analyze the lessons learned during the COVID-19 pandemic and be prepared to assist in the next public health emergency
- Engage communities through community outreach events
“As the parent of a prospective TSU student, and one who is very science-health focused, when I heard about this new center, it further solidified TSU as an institution I would feel proud to see my daughter attend,” said Ricky Phelps, a Houston transplant originally from Maryland.
“Texas Southern University’s legacy is one of public service and rising to the needs of its constituency, and the Center for Transformative Health is the newest embodiment of that legacy. I am grateful for the partnership with the City of Houston and am confident that the lives of our citizens will be improved because of the center,” said Dale.
“I’m excited every time I see Texas Southern involved in partnerships with the city to better service the good people of Third Ward, Texas and beyond,” said longtime Third Ward activist Carl Davis. “This new center will be a blessing to many.”
TSU will provide a summary of activities on a quarterly basis on activities related to:
- Educational outreach initiatives, endeavors, and training efforts
- Increased community partnerships
- Activities conducted with new/existing partners
The City of Houston provided $1 million in seed funding to support the center.