Prevention Research Center, Division of Prevention & Population Sciences, UNM Department of Pediatrics

MSC11 6145
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131

Physical Location:
2703 Frontier Ave NE
Research Incubator Building (RIB) Suite 120

Phone: (505) 272-4462
Fax: (505) 272-3955

UNM PRC Staff Member Wins Pediatrics Research Week Award

May 11, 2018

Ivy Cervantes wins Pediatrics Research Week AwardCongratulations to Ivy Cervantes, MPH on winning the second place award at this year’s Pediatrics Research Week for her presentation on Home Visiting in Bernalillo County!

Ivy is an associate scientist at the UNM Prevention Research Center and completed her MPH at the UNM College of Population Health last year, and her MD while previously living in the Philippines. Her research focuses on the health impacts of gender inequity and violence, and has previously included topics such as unintended pregnancies in the Philippines, sexual violence among New Mexican youth, and violence prevention.

Continuing her interest in upstream prevention, Ivy’s award winning project explored home visiting (HV) programs, which provide support for families and can help reduce adverse childhood experiences. The project, entitled “Home Visiting: A Partner for Growing Healthy Families” looked at barriers to and facilitators of healthcare provider referrals to home visiting programs in New Mexico. This involved conducting semi-structured interviews with home visiting program managers, home visitors, community health workers, and healthcare providers. The research team at the UNM PRC, which included Dr. Theresa Cruz and Leona Woelk, MA, found that many barriers existed, including lack of knowledge, stigma, and lack of an internal referral process. The research resulted in recommendations for ways to improve awareness of the program and methods that would ease provider referrals.

Following this presentation, Ivy is continuing this research into implementation and follow-up studies. To enact their recommendations, the research team has been presenting their findings at provider meetings and has worked to facilitate the referral process by revising the necessary forms, and exploring the inclusion of referrals in electronic medical records. Continued research will focus on whether or not there have been improvements in the baseline referral numbers following these interventions, and will additionally expand outside of Bernalillo to evaluate HV in rural parts of the state.