Partnership for the Advancement of Cancer Research Project

Pilot Research Project Nine

“Una Mano Amiga, patient navigator program for Southwest New Mexico”

Co-Principal Investigators:
Carol Moinpour, Member, Public Health Sciences – FHCRC
Nigel Bush, Associate Member, Public Health Sciences – FHCRC
Hugo Vilchis, Director, Border Epidemiology and Environmental Health Center, and Associate Professor – NMSU

The southwest region of New Mexico is characterized by small communities living in extreme rural remoteness, typified by low income, with especially high proportions with no health insurance. This region poses significant challenges to the delivery of health and human services. The cost, time, and trained staff needed to conduct outreach and find creative ways to provide services is daunting: small populations are isolated by large distances, local cultures tend to promote self-dependence and reliance on the family; low literacy levels and language difficulties prevail. To address the serious geographic and economic health disparities in this isolated corner of New Mexico, the investigators will implement and test a culturally appropriate rural patient navigator program employing pre-existing health promotoras from within the local communities. This program will provide services to cancer patients, including their families, in Grant County, one of the most underserved counties of southern New Mexico. The specific aims of this new promotora-based patient navigator program are to: 1) assess the detailed cancer navigation needs of patients and their families in an underserved target area of rural southwest New Mexico; 2) Test the feasibility of training local promotoras as patient navigators; and 3) Evaluate the process and effectiveness of promotora patient navigator activities across the target region.

For More Information

Learn more about Dr. Moinpour’s research interests.

Information about the research conducted through the Border Epidemiology and Environmental Health Center can be found at:

Faculty and students interested in learning more about this pilot project may contact Dr. Carol Moinpour at or Dr. Nigel Bush at or Dr. Hugo Vilchis at

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