Grantee: Darla E. Kendzor, PhD

Darla E. Kendzor

Darla E. Kendzor, PhD

Behavioral Scientist
  • University of Oklahoma - Health Sciences Center

Dr. Kendzor is passionate about her research, which aims to understand and address the psychosocial and behavioral pathways that lead to health disparities. Socioeconomically disadvantaged populations suffer a disproportionate burden of cancer incidence and mortality, due in part to a higher prevalence of cigarette smoking. Dr. Kendzor is particularly interested in identifying practical and effective smoking cessation interventions for socioeconomically disadvantaged adults. Ultimately, the goal of her work is to reduce smoking rates in vulnerable populations and to thereby reduce tobacco-related health disparities.

The current research project will evaluate the effectiveness of offering small financial incentives for biochemically verified smoking abstinence among individuals who are participating in a safety net hospital tobacco cessation program. This research also aims to identify treatment mechanisms and other contextual factors that influence abstinence in this vulnerable and understudied population via smartphone-based ecological momentary assessment. The findings of this study will bring us closer to the development of practical, inexpensive, and effective smoking cessation interventions for socioeconomically disadvantaged smokers that may be applied in real-world settings. Findings will also increase our understanding of the factors that contribute to low cessation rates among socioeconomically disadvantaged smokers.

I had a realization that countless factors adversely impact the health of those living in poverty, and this has compelled me to work towards achieving health equity through behavior change.”

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