Our Work


Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.

~  Steve Jobs ~



This project is focused on understanding the impact of COVID-19 on the cancer care
received by Caucasian, Latina, and Black breast cancer survivors to identify potentially modifiable factors to inform future models of care
delivery. This work was funded by the National Cancer Institute through an administrative supplement to the UHAND Program and is Directed by Dr. Chiara Acquati (University of Houston Graduate School of Social Work).

This project is open to new participants. Contact us if you have an interest in participation.


African-American breast cancer survivors are less likely to opt for reconstruction relative to White survivors. This project uses a mixed methods approach to better understanding the multi-level determinants of reconstruction decision making among African-American survivors. This work was funded through the Synergy internal grant mechanism (University of Houston/University of Houston-Downtown).

This project is closed to new participants.  


Tobacco use rates are elevated among individuals with mental and behavioral healthcare issues. This project assists healthcare agencies across Texas to implement a tobacco-free workplace program that includes education, screening, treatment, and outreach services.

This effort is ongoing and is funded by the Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas (PP130032; PP160081, PP170070, PP200051) and most recently through a contract with the Department of State Health Services. 

UHAND Program


The UHAND (University of Houston/MD Anderson) Program to Reduce Cancer Disparities seeks to understand and improve the health of African Americans and Hispanics in Houston and prepare a cadre of diverse scholars to enter the workforce with interdisciplinary training to address the social determinants of health. This work is funded by the National Cancer Institute through grants P20CA221696 and P20CA221697. 

The UHAND project is no longer accepting trainees.



Individuals who are homeless have higher rates of disease, shorter life expectancies, and disproportionately higher health care costs compared to individuals with regular and stable housing. Project ADVANCE is focused on improving the health of individuals who are homeless. Advance Projects have been funded through several combined funding sources across affiliated universities.


African American adults bear a disproportionate burden of disease, injury, death, and disability. Project Stress and Health explores the intersection of stressors affecting African American adults, basal hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis regulation, and health among volunteers from a local community church congregation. This work has been funded through multiple combined funding sources across affiliated universities.

This project is closed to new participants.


Sexual minority individuals have a higher incidence of smoking than the general population. Project FRESH AIR examines the theory-based predictors of tobacco use (as well as other health behaviors, including diet and physical activity) among lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer and other sexual minority adults. This work was funded by the University of Houston through discretionary funds. 

This project is closed to new participants.


Recent Mentees... Where are they now? 

Sean Reuven, undergrad mentee, University of Houston School of Medicine student

Valentina Maza, undergraduate mentee, University of Nebraska-Lincoln clinical psychology doctoral student

Seyed (Ali) Khalifi, graduate mentee, Paul L. Foster School of Medicine student

Surya Chinamuthevi, undergrad mentee, Texas A&M College of Medicine student

Yash Harkara, undergrad mentee, University of Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine

Chisom (Odoh) Iwandu, postdoc mentee, University of North Texas Department of Health and Public Service tenure track Assistant Professor

Adolfo G. Cuevas, graduate mentee, Tufts University Department of Community Health tenure track Assistant Professor

© 2016 by SD/HD Lab constituents

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