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PAGNY-Affiliated Facility Receives State Grant to Study Obesity and Hypertension

Dr. Balavenkatesh Kanna,
Chair of the PAGNY Research Committee

Photo credit: Linda Morales

We’re proud to announce that New York State has issued a grant of $1.26 million to NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln from the Empire Clinical Research Investigator Program. During the next two years, this grant will be used for biomedical research on obesity and hypertension in patients in inner-city settings.

PAGNY Dr. Balavenkatesh Kanna, Chair of the PAGNY Research Committee, will lead this study in collaboration with PAGNY Dr. Maria Espejo, a researcher at NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln. The focus of their study is to determine how best to achieve weight loss and blood pressure control in the targeted population.

According to Dr. Kanna, “Community-based settings offer us a unique and favorable opportunity to ask research questions on how we can counter the barriers related to weight loss and blood pressure control, while engaging the patient in shared decision-making.” He went on to say that “a community-based approach ensures that the interventions for improving chronic disease conditions have been selected by the patients themselves and therefore have a higher likelihood of achieving success.”

The Empire Clinical Research Investigator Program was created in 2000 at the recommendation of the New York State Council on Graduate Medical Education. This council, an advisory body of the New York State Department of Health, provides policy advice relevant to medical education and training. Since the program’s inception, almost $103 million has been awarded to deserving hospitals.

The purpose of the awards is to fund clinical research teams that focus on specific diseases and conditions of concern to the community, such as obesity, diabetes, lupus, kidney disease, schizophrenia, HPV infections and hearing loss.