December 5, 2023

Associate Professor Elham Mahmoudi wins minority research award from the American Public Health Association

Her work examines how differing Medicare plans influence hospitalization rates among white, Hispanic and Black individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementia.

Associate Professor Elham Mahmoudi, Ph.D., of the Department of Family Medicine was awarded the 2023 American Public Health Association’s Betty J. Cleckley Minority Issues Research Award for her paper, “Racial/ethnic disparities in 30-day hospital readmission and frequent hospitalizations among Medicare beneficiaries with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementia: Traditional Medicare vs. Medicare advantage.”

Associate Professor Elham Mahmoudi, Ph.D.

Mahmoudi received the award during the recent APHA conference in Atlanta.

The award recognizes individuals in aging and public health research who have made a significant impact on the lives of older people who are members of minority groups, according to the APHA. The organization notes that minimizing health disparities and improving access to health and long-term care services are important issues for minority populations in the United States.

“Improving quality and equity of care for minority Medicare beneficiaries with Alzheimer's disease and related dementias is a public policy priority,” Mahmoudi said. “My research goal is to create an efficient and equitable healthcare system and to reduce hospitalizations for older people. It’s critical to learn how we can keep older adults healthy to live with dignity.

“Findings from this study can inform Medicare policies on dementia care aimed at reducing disparities in adverse health events,” she added.

 Mahmoudi also secured a five-year,  $3,592,601 RO1 grant from the NIH earlier this year for a similar study. That study is titled, “Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Health Care and Challenges in Insurance Plan Choices among Older People with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementia: A Mixed Methods Study of Medicare Options”.