Grantee: Anita Y. Kinney

Anita Y. Kinney

Anita Y. Kinney, PhD, RN

Behavioral Epidemiologist
  • University of Utah

Dr. Kinney directs a research team that focuses on discovering ways to ensure optimal translation of genomic and other scientific discoveries to the population to prevent cancer and improve cancer-related outcomes. As a population scientist, she applies a combination of epidemiology, behavioral science, and clinical perspectives to study cancer prevention and control issues. Her overarching research goal is to understand variation in behavioral and social factors and outcomes, and to use this information to develop effective interventions that optimize decision-making and improve health. Dr. Kinney is particularly interested in studying socially and geographically underserved populations. Dr. Kinney's collaborative, multidisciplinary research has contributed to advances in biobehavioral science, such as delineating the role of social involvement and social support in cancer risk, stage of disease, and screening behavior, discovery of effective interventions that promote risk-appropriate cancer screening, and identification of critical considerations and potential strategies for implementing genetic risk communication interventions in diverse populations.

Dr. Kinney's population-based study, 'Bridging Geographic Barriers: Remote Cancer Genetics Counseling for Rural Women,' also known as the REACH Project (Risk Education and Assessment for Cancer Heredity), compares behavioral, informed decision-making, and economic outcomes associated with telephone-based genetic counseling to those of standard of care, in-person counseling. Rural-urban differences with regard to the study's outcomes also will be assessed. The study's findings will likely have a significant impact with regard to addressing geographic disparities, selecting appropriate candidates for telephone counseling, providing evidence-based guidelines for policies regarding genetic counseling practice, and determining government and third-party reimbursement policies for telephone-delivered counseling services. These data also may be useful to cancer centers for clinical genetic services and outreach planning.

Meeting with key stakeholders in rural Louisiana prior to implementing a BRCA1 testing study, I saw firsthand that translation of genetic discoveries into effective clinical interventions would be optimized if behavioral and social implications, along with cultural issues, were considered early in the process of scientific discovery.”

Selected Grants