The leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the U.S. include chronic disease such as the following:

Obesity

Cardiovascular diseases

Respiratory diseases

Diabetes

As researchers, we know that in order to prevent and manage chronic diseases, we must also understand and address contextual elements such as health care access and affordability, neighborhood environment and exposure to stressors and discrimination, all of which influence behavioral risk factors associated with chronic diseases, including:

  • Poor diet quality
  • Physical inactivity
  • Tobacco use
  • Alcohol use

Thus, we approach our work to combat chronic disease through the lens of these social determinants of health, conducting research to improve risk factors across individual, family, community, health care and population levels. Our efforts also aim to improve treatment adherence and patient-provider communication, reduce disease symptoms and enhance quality of life.

Research within this realm is multidisciplinary in nature, and we are proud to collaborate with key stakeholders outside our department. Our research methods range from efficacy trials to dissemination and implementation efforts.

Ongoing Projects

Jessica G. LaRose, Ph.D., M.S.

Jessica G. LaRose, Ph.D., M.S.

Associate Professor

Jessica G. LaRose, Ph.D., M.S.

Jessica G. LaRose, Ph.D., M.S.

Associate Professor

Department of Health Behavior and Policy

Email: jessca.larose@vcuhealth.org

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Bernard F. Fuemmeler, Ph.D., M.P.H.

Bernard F. Fuemmeler, Ph.D., M.P.H.

Professor

Bernard F. Fuemmeler, Ph.D., M.P.H.

Bernard F. Fuemmeler, Ph.D., M.P.H.

Professor

Department of Health Behavior and Policy

Email: bernard.fuemmeler@vcuhealth.org

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Sun Jung “Sunny” Kim, Ph.D., M.S., M.A.

Sun Jung “Sunny” Kim, Ph.D., M.S., M.A.

Assistant Professor

Sun Jung “Sunny” Kim, Ph.D., M.S., M.A.

Sun Jung “Sunny” Kim, Ph.D., M.S., M.A.

Assistant Professor

Department of Health Behavior and Policy

Email: sun.jung.kim@vcuhealth.org

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