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OU researchers to launch study of parallels between COVID-19, health of Black Americans

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OU Medicine

The OU Medical Center.

OU researchers will investigate how the COVID-19 pandemic and social unrest in the U.S. affect the physical and mental health of Black Americans, according to a university press release.

The research team at the TSET Health Promotion Research Center — located on the OU Health Sciences Center campus — will launch this statewide cohort study, called Project Trinity, in February, according to the release.

The researchers said the socio-economic disruption from the pandemic and the social unrest may lead to detrimental health choices like greater tobacco and alcohol use, sedentary behavior and poor dietary choices.

Dr. Adam Alexander, the project leader and an assistant professor at the OU Health Sciences Center campus, said the project aims to provide insights for policymakers, public health professionals and researchers in Oklahoma. The information from the project can be used to inform public policy and to restore the trust between Black Americans, law enforcement and other public institutions, Alexander said in the release. 

Alexander said participants who volunteer for this study play an important role in improving health promotion.

Each African American adult who participates in this cohort study will contribute to the broader discussion about identifying policies and interventions that are needed to mitigate the secondary health and economic consequences of these traumatic events,” Alexander said.

Volunteers for this study will be compensated to complete online survey assessments over two years and will be asked to provide information on how COVID-19 and social unrest have impacted their health, according to the release.

For more information on participating in the study, email

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