Dr. Jessica Hanson holds a PhD in Community and Behavioral Health from the University of Iowa’s College of Public Health. Dr. Hanson’s doctoral work focused on indirect and direct measures of perceived behavioral control of two behaviors related to alcohol-exposed pregnancy prevention (birth control utilization and binge drinking levels), specifically how they are associated with each other; with intention toward the behaviors; and with the behaviors themselves. For the past eight years, her professional experiences include working with American Indian communities in the Northern Plains on federally-funded projects that centered on a variety of maternal-child health issues, including projects related to fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) prevention. She was also the Principal Investigator on a pilot grant that focused on understanding prenatal health care experiences among American Indian women and served as the Project Manager for two physician-initiated research projects, one concentrated on asthma case management in an American Indian tribe and the other on determining the prevalence of urinary incontinence in American Indian women.
Current Project Information:
Tribal Collaborations in the Prevention of Alcohol-Exposed Pregnancies
The goal of this study is to work with community partners using a community-based participatory research approach to support partnerships with tribes in the Northern Plains who have an interest in an alcohol-exposed pregnancy (AEP) prevention program. We will implement a community needs assessment to establish effective input from the community on the importance of AEP prevention efforts; what an AEP prevention project would ideally look like; and, if desired, how to best modify current AEP prevention projects to make appropriate for individual tribal communities. Finally, based on results from the community needs assessment and input from Community Advisory Boards, AEP prevention pilot projects will be implemented in three large, hospital Indian Health Service (IHS) sites.
Pilot Study: Fit-care Curriculum’s impact on Children's and Parent's Health Habits
Fit-Care is a health promotion curriculum for child care providers intended to influence health habits, choices, and behaviors of children and their parents. Sanford Children’s Health and Fitness Initiative and the Sanford Research are partnering to conduct a year-long pilot study to measure the impact of the fit-Care curriculum and the fit-Care website (alone and in combination) on the health behaviors of children and their parents.
Epidemiology of Substance-Exposed Pregnancies in the Bemidji Area
Via retrospective chart abstractions at the Sanford Health-North hospital, the specific aims of this project are to 1) determine the prevalence of substance-exposed pregnancies in the Bemidji area; and 2) establish significant demographic characteristics in women who present for delivery and are subsequently given a substance use-specific code. Important sub-aims include identifying how many women present using multiple substances, the degree to which multiple children have been exposed, and the number of women who arrive to deliver their infant without previous prenatal care.