About CDU

January 2017

CDU News January 2017

Three Publications of Sheba George, PhD, Receive National Attention

Dr. Sheba George, CDU School of Medicine faculty-member and member of the Center for Biomedical Informatics, was recently lauded for recent publications that have received national attention recently.

In November 2016, she, along with her Informatics colleague Dr. Lola Ogunyemi, first author and co-author respectively, we named finalists for the American Medical Informatics Association’s Diana Forsythe Award.  

Other authors include George SM, Moran Hayes E, Fish A, and Daskivic LP. The paper is titled Understanding the Knowledge Gap Experienced by U.S. Safety Net Patients in Teleretinal Screening.

“The Diana Forsythe Award is given each year to one paper that exemplifies the use of social science methods to illuminate important issues within biomedical informatics.  Three finalist papers are selected from different proceedings and medical journals. Being chosen as a finalist is a very big deal in our field,” said Dr. George. The award was announced at the Annual Meeting of the American Medical Informatics Association, in Chicago. https://www.amia.org/amia-awards/working-group-awards

The paper is on the topic of how African-American and Latino safety net patients view teleretinal screening. For the paper, six focus groups were conducted with 42 participants in English and Spanish to highlight their areas of concern and of satisfaction with the use of health information technology (specifically, teleretinal screening) to detect diabetic retinopathy in place of in-person eye examinations with an ophthalmologist.

Dr. George also had the honor of being one of three PIs who led a group of national experts on a report published in March 2016 by the National Institutes of Health, which offers researchers guidance on how to incorporate cultural variables in their health and mental health-care research. The 319-page report, called The Cultural Framework for Health, is the result of 18 months of work by 30 experts from seven disciplines — psychology, anthropology, medicine, nursing, psychiatry, public health and sociology — who worked together to develop a consensus definition of culture and recommendations on how to more accurately apply it in health research.

The report is important because research often highlights culture as a powerful force in determining health outcomes, but rarely defines or correctly measures it. The report provides a practical tool for researchers when considering the role of culture in areas like health behavior research, research with diverse racial or ethnic groups, and implementation science.

This is particularly important for researchers and students at CDU, given the populations of focus in CDU’s research and teaching and overall mission.  The link below at the NIH describes the importance of the report.

Finally, a paper about this report, also co-authored by Dr. George, was published in a premiere health journal, Social Science and Medicine.  Here’s the citation and link to the paper:
Kagawa-Singer, M, Dressler, WW, George, SM, The NIH Expert Panel. Culture: The missing link in health research Soc Sci Med. 2016 Jul 18. pii: S0277-9536(16)30369-0. 2016. Link to Pubmed Abstract: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27542574 PMID: 27542574

MLK  Parade Dr. Martin Luther King’s Birthday Observance/Parade

A number of CDU departments, Faculty Staff and Students linked arms to march in the 32nd Annual Kingdom Day Parade on January 16th, 2017 and the Federal holiday honoring the man of Peace’s birthday.

CDU President and CEO Dr. David M. Carlisle led the way holding a sign, which touted the 50th Anniversary of Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science. He was joined by Drew, the Mighty Lion, Students from the College of Science and Health and the Mervyn M. Dymally School of Nursing College of Medicine. Dean of student affairs Dr. Jinny Oh rode much of the way with her 9 year old son, Lincoln. 4,Yesenia and year old sister, Mom Nursing student, Jackie Brown John Patton drove. Following Channel Covered Channel 7 Link and Pictures.

In Memoriam: Dr. Ernest H. Smith

Dr. Ernest H. Smith was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on November 9, 1931. He received his Bachelor's Degree, Cum Laude, in Biology from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania in 1953 and a Doctor of Medicine degree from Howard University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C., in 1957. He conducted pediatric residencies at both Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in Pennsylvania (1961-1962) and District of Columbia General Hospital, in Washington, D.C. (1963-1964). He completed fellowships at both Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in Pennsylvania (1962-1963) and Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan (1965-1967).

From 1958 to 1959 he was a Field Health Officer in the United States Public Health Service on the Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservation in South Dakota and from 1959-1961 the Medical Officer–In-Charge in the U.S. Public Health Hospital located on the reservation.

Dr. Smith was an associate professor of pediatrics since 1972 at the Martin Luther King Jr. General Hospital and since 1971 at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science. He served as a pediatric cardiologist, director of the King/Drew School Health Programs, director of the Community Division of Pediatrics and co-director of the Compton Sickle Cell Center. In 2013 he was appointed as Emeritus Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science.

Ernest H. Smith, M.D. had both organized and participated in numerous conferences and workshops related to adolescents. He acted as a consultant to many professional associations such as the Southeast and Central City Mental Health associations, the American Public Health Association, Urban League Head Start, Compton Unified School District, Kellogg’s Hannah Neil World of Children Selection Committee, and many others.

Dr. Smith had appeared on numerous TV and radio programs and had participated in news conferences related to drug abuse, adolescent stress, violence in adolescence, gang violence, juvenile crime, life cycles and growth development.

He was also involved in the church, from 1946-1947 he was Lay Minister at St. Paul Baptist Church Junior Church in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and from 1966-1971 he was Lay Minister at the Christ United Church of Christ in Detroit, Michigan. Dr. Smith enjoyed music as well, he played and taught the trombone and piano. He was also the Co-founder and director of the Howard University Medical School Chorus.

Dr. Ernest H. Smith had received many special awards and recognitions from various organizations, school, and government entities including the California State Legislature, United States Congress, Los Angeles County, City of Compton, City of Lynwood, Charles R. Drew University, Compton Unified, Inglewood Unified, Compton College, National Black Child Development Institute, Greater Unity Baptist Church, and the National Society of Black Engineers just to name a very few.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome - Novel Concepts for Research and Treatment by Dr. Victor Chaban

This book by Dr. Victor Chaban provides comprehensive and up-to-date insights into emerging trends in research and treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The text gives a lucid view on the mechanisms of generation of IBS. Key features include pathogenesis, existing and new therapies, as well as nonpharmacological approach in management of IBS. The authors are known experts who contributed significantly for a better understanding of the etiology of IBS as one of the most commonly diagnosed functional disorders. This book provides a state-of-the-art review of different aspects of IBS and is recommended to healthcare providers, clinical scientists, general practitioners, and patients. It is also recommended to students in health care professions who seek a fundamental understanding of modulatory systems involved in functional disorders. <br /> I would like to acknowledge CDU Urban Health Institute for the continuous support of my research enterprise. <br /> Respectfully, <br /> Victor Chaban <br /> &nbsp;</p> <p><br /> &nbsp;</p>

View the book here:


Three Publications of Sheba George, PhD, Receive National Attention

Sheba George, Ph.D.

Dr. Sheba George's research interests broadly center on how health communication and health literacy among underserved and marginalized populations are mediated by social and cultural variables–such as age, race/ethnicity, class, and immigration status–to impact health disparities and outcomes. Furthermore, she has been using theories and methods grounded in a sociotechnical approach to support the implementation of health information technology (HIT) as well as to evaluate organizational and provider readiness and urban populations' willingness to utilize these HIT solutions.

Dr. George holds a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California at Berkeley. She is the published author of over 30 peer-reviewed articles and two books by the University of California Press. Her sole-authored book, entitled When Women Come First: Gender and Class in Transnational Migration (University of California Press, 2005), has been translated into Japanese (2011).

She has completed an NIMH postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA and served as a consultant for Kaiser Permanente's Division of Research on informatics related research exploring the impact of the introduction of computers and the electronic medical record in the exam room on the doctor-patient interaction. A co-authored paper resulting from this project published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine was selected as an editor's pick for the "Best of JGIM" in 2006. More recently, the American Medical Informatics Association nominated her papers for the Diana Forsythe Award for two separate papers, in 2011 and 2016 for her work in telemedicine.

Dr. George was one of three PIs who led a group of national experts on a report published in March of 2016 by the National Institutes of Health, which offers researchers guidance on how to incorporate cultural variables in their health and mental health-care research. The 319-page report, called The Cultural Framework for Health, is the result of 18 months of work by 30 experts from seven disciplines — psychology, anthropology, medicine, nursing, psychiatry, public health and sociology — who worked together to develop a consensus definition of culture and recommendations on how to more accurately apply it in health research.

In addition to her faculty position at CDU and membership in the CDU Center for Biomedical Informatics, she is also associate adjunct professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at the School of Public Health at UCLA. Her work has led her to be invited to be a keynote or plenary speaker at a number of conferences nationally and internationally.

Dr. George's CDU Profile can be found here.

Faculty Publications December 2016 – January 2017:

Lactate, a Neglected Factor for Diabetes and Cancer Interaction. Wu Y, Dong Y,AtefiM, Liu Y,ElshimaliY,VadgamaJV. MediatorsInflamm. 2016;2016:6456018.doi: 10.1155/2016/6456018. Review. PMID: 28077918 [PubMed - in process]

Gender Comparison in Referrals and Treatment Completion to Residential and Outpatient Alcohol Treatment. Bazargan-Hejazi S, De Lucia V, Pan D,MojtahedzadehM, RahmaniE, JaboriS, ZahmatkeshG, BazarganM. SubstAbuse. 2016 Dec 19;10:109-116.doi: 10.4137/SART.S39943. PMID: 28008266 [PubMed]

The theory of planned behavior (TPB) and texting while driving behavior in college students. Bazargan-Hejazi S,TeruyaS, Pan D, Lin J, Gordon D,KrochalkPC,BazarganM. TrafficInjPrev. 2017 Jan 2;18(1):56-62. PMID: 27088534 [PubMed - in process]

Biotechnological applications of microbial bioconversions. Chemopreventive Activity of MGN-3/Biobran Against Chemical Induction of Glandular Stomach Carcinogenesis in Rats and Its Apoptotic Effect in Gastric Cancer Cells. BadrEl-Din NK, Abdel Fattah SM, Pan D, Tolentino L,GhoneumM. IntegrCancerTher. 2016 Dec;15(4):NP26-NP34. PMID: 27151588 [PubMed - in process]

Profile of Hospital Admissions due to Self-Inflicted Harm in Los Angeles County from 2001 to 2010. Bazargan-Hejazi S, Ahmadi A, Bazargan M, Rahmani E, Pan D, Zahmatkesh G, Teruya S. J Forensic Sci. 2017 Jan 25. doi: 10.1111/1556-4029.13416. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 28120509

CDU is a Smoke Free Campus! Frequently Asked Questions

On January 1, 2017, CDU became a smoke and tobacco-free campus, a change that confirms CDU’s commitment to saving lives and creating a healthy environment for the many who learn, work, visit, and spend time at CDU.

This change comes as a result of our President, Dr. David M. Carlisle, charging the University’s administrators to launch this initiative after many students, faculty, and staff voiced their desire for such a change. As a leader in health and health care for underserved communities, CDU has an affirmative duty to contribute to the reduction of tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure, especially as it pertains to our students, faculty, staff, and visitors. Going smoke and tobacco-free supports the University’s vision of “[e]xcellent health and wellness for all …” in an ever growing health-conscious society.

It is no secret that exposure to secondhand smoke and tobacco use lead to devastating health consequences, and evidence shows that individuals are more likely to quit when spending time in a tobacco-free environment. Eliminating tobacco use and reducing one’s exposure to secondhand smoke are critical to reducing tobacco-related suffering, diseases, and death. According to reports by the U.S. Surgeon General and others, there is no safe level of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke, which is capable of causing cancer.

Not long ago, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services called on all universities across the United States to adopt smoke and tobacco-free policies. CDU now joins over 1,000 other colleges and universities, and 33 other Historically Black campuses, which are already smoke or tobacco-free.
This initiative is about creating a healthy environment for the many who learn, work, and visit our campus. Creating a safe environment for our students, faculty, and staff is of paramount importance. This policy does not require smokers or tobacco users to quit. Indeed we know that many such individuals struggle with addiction and the University is sensitive to this fact. However, smokers or tobacco users are prohibited from smoking or using tobacco on CDU property.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What does smoke and tobacco-free mean?
Use of all tobacco products, including but not limited to cigarettes, cigars, pipes, smokeless tobacco and electronic cigarettes (“E-cigarettes”), is prohibited on all CDU owned or leased property as of January 1, 2017. This refers to all parts of the CDU property, including campus buildings, parking areas, grounds areas, and University vehicles. This also includes all other University owned or leased property or facilities operated and controlled by CDU staff or faculty in support of CDU administrative, teaching, research, medical care or other public service functions.
Any individual on CDU property is subject to the policy, including students, employees, vendors, and visitors. The initial implementation of this policy is meant to be educational rather than punitive, and successful implementation of the policy depends on the cooperation and engagement of all stakeholders in spreading awareness that CDU is now a smoke and tobacco-free campus.

Who will be affected by the policy?
All CDU stakeholders including students, faculty, staff, and visitors will be affected. Though there have been no studies conducted to capture how many of CDU’s students and employees smoke or use tobacco, the California Department of Public Health has released figures indicating that 11.9% of adults in California use tobacco. With a 12% prevalence rate, this would mean that CDU potentially has upwards of 100 smokers, not including vendors and visitors.

What will enforcement look like?
The enforcement of this policy will be initially educational, focused on informing all members of the University community and visitors to campus of this new policy. The policy will be included in the upcoming editions of the University Catalog and Employee Handbook. As with all policies, all students and employees are expected to comply. The administration and smoke and tobacco-free task force will review these strategies after the policy has been implemented for a season and determine if further enforcement protocols are necessary. All complaints can be referred to the University Compliance Officer at garyveron@cdrewu.edu.

Will the University have any designated smoking areas on campus? No. Smoking and the use of tobacco is now prohibited on all property owned or leased by the university.
Does this policy extend to city owned streets and sidewalks? No. The University has no jurisdiction over the use of city owned streets and sidewalks. However, CDU does ask that smokers be considerate of our neighbors and community when going off campus to smoke.
What cessation support will we provide for students? CDU is committed to providing cessation support for all interested students. Upon notifying the Dean of Student Affairs that a student is seeking to quit smoking, the student will be provided information regarding how to obtain NRTs (nicotine replacement therapy kits). All tobacco users who want to quit are encouraged to call the free California Smokers Helpline, 1-800-NO-BUTTS, available in multiple languages.
Asking a student’s physician for assistance regarding cessation can also be a great way to learn of additional resources that a local clinic or health care provider may offer.

What cessation support will we provide for employees?
CDU is committed to providing our faculty and staff with a tobacco-free environment.
The University has helped to provide employees with a variety of plans that offer assistance with smoking cessation:

CDU Medical Plan Services
Anthem Blue Cross Prescriptions to help you quit; Smoking cessation counseling
Kaiser Permanente Prescriptions to help you quit, Telephone-based coaching
• Southern California: 866.862.4295, Kaiser Online Resources
• Healthmedia Breathe (online program)
• Quit Smoking (resource page)
• Tobacco Medications (resource page)
On-site counseling, contact your local Kaiser med center for availability
Employee Assistance Program Smoking cessation coaching: 800.327.7526
CDU also encourages use of California’s free Smoker’s Helpline at 1-800-NO-BUTTS, available in multiple languages.

What about smokers and tobacco users who don’t want to quit?
University policy does not require that tobacco users/smokers quit, however, use of such products are completely banned from CDU’s campus. Just as tobacco users need to prepare to address nicotine withdrawal symptoms when flying across country or are in other smoke-free zones, tobacco users will need to prepare to be tobacco-free on campus.

Does the evidence support that secondhand smoke leads to health risks?
According to the Surgeon General and other reports, there is no safe level of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke, and environmental tobacco smoke is capable of causing cancer. The American College Health Association recommends that all colleges and universities attempt to achieve having campuses become 100% tobacco-free environments. Information about the health risks of secondhand smoke, including reports from the Centers for Disease Control, the Surgeon General, and other research studies can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/secondhand_smoke/health_effects/.

Why are electronic cigarettes and smoke-less tobacco products included in the policy?
Banning these products was specifically included in President Carlisle’s charge and fully supported by the Smoke and Tobacco Free Campus Task Force. Electronic cigarettes contain nicotine, are not approved by the FDA and have not been recommended to support quit efforts. The goal is to steer tobacco-users toward proven methods of quitting.

Aren’t tobacco use and smoking considered legal rights?
Adults are legally permitted to smoke and use tobacco. However, the University has the legal authority to establish policies regarding smoking and tobacco use on its property for the well-being of the campus community, much like it can regulate alcohol.

How should I approach someone who is smoking or using tobacco products on campus?
We ask that our entire community aid in informing others on campus about our smoke and tobacco-free policy. If you see someone violating this policy, you can politely let them know that CDU is a smoke and tobacco-free campus and ask them to please refrain. Possible approaches include: “Hi there. Did you know that CDU is now tobacco-free? Could you please dispose of that cigarette/tobacco product?” or “Hello. CDU is now a 100% tobacco-free campus. Please don't smoke/use tobacco here.” While not everyone will feel comfortable approaching tobacco users, all students, faculty, staff, and visitors are expected to comply with the policy. As a last resort, the CDU campus security team may also be utilized to assist in approaching a non-compliant individual. Approaches should always reflect care and respect for the individual.

Many of our neighboring campuses have produced excellent training videos on how to approach smokers on campus. Here is a link to some UCLA-produced videos on how to address individuals who are smoking and/or using tobacco on CDU’s campus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbAjnhVMbR0&list=PLbTc_eeg0ejpiJZd843yx0TvCta0CpB0G&index=9

What about CDU’s neighbors?
CDU requests that its students, faculty, staff, and visitors respect our neighbors and help maintain a positive relationship with them. We ask that members of our community not litter or congregate on others’ properties. The University additionally asks that smokers and other tobacco users be careful to dispose of cigarettes or other trash properly. Several of our neighbors have been notified of our policy and we encourage open communication of any problems.

If a student or employee chooses to continue to use tobacco and does not have enough time during breaks to step off campus, how should faculty and supervisors respond?
The University is aware that nicotine is a highly addictive drug and waiting until lunch or after work will be extremely difficult for some. Faculty and supervisors should be compassionate to those who have tobacco addictions. Faculty and supervisors should also encourage students and employees to prepare to handle cravings during time spent on campus. Nicotine replacement measures like Nicorette gum or lozenges are encouraged for times when it is inconvenient to smoke.

The policy requires that students, faculty, and staff leave campus to smoke. What about their individual safety?
As in any urban area, it is vitally important that all individuals consider their safety and well-being both on and off campus. During the workday, nicotine replacement lozenges, gums, patches, inhalers and others are alternate options to leaving campus.

For those who choose to leave campus at night to smoke, please be careful and be aware of your surroundings. CDU Campus Safety is available throughout the day and in the evenings (after 5 p.m.) via telephone at 323-326-4859.

If you have further inquiries, please email Compliance Officer Gary Veron at

This page has been visited: 373