The Immigrant Health Initiative (iHi) is spearheaded by a group of faculty members and center leaders from eight USC schools to find new solutions to reduce the persistent health disparities and improve health outcomes in the U.S. Alarmed by the rising prevalence of obesity and chronic diseases among immigrants after their arrival in the U.S. and coupled with the increasing proportion of new immigrant populations in this country, the iHi recognizes the importance of immigrant health in public health policies and practices. Encouraged by the incredible resilience and ingenuity displayed by the immigrants and the vast cultural assets among them, the iHi intends to identify positive values and healthy traditions of immigrants and help them keep their strengths and Americanize with good health. The goal of iHi is to engage immigrants in health promotion and disease prevention and redefine the American lifestyle to benefit all.

For the most up-to-date information about iHi events, news and other activities, visit the official website at http://usc.edu/ihi.


Events

Members

2016-2017

Leadership

  • Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, PhD (PI, Executive Team), Keck School of Medicine of USC, Center for Health Equity in the Americas
  • Iris Chi, DSW, USC School of Social Work
  • Michael Cousineau, DrPH, Keck School of Medicine of USC
  • Niels Frenzen, JD, USC Gould School of Law
  • Joyce Javier, MD, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
  • Mariaelena Lara, MD, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
  • Michelle Levander, MA, USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism
  • Lihua Liu, PhD (Co-PI, Executive Team), Keck School of Medicine of USC
  • Steven Lopez, PhD, USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts & Sciences
  • Doe Mayer, MA, USC School of Cinematic Arts
  • Roseann Mulligan, DDS, Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC
  • Dowell Myers, PhD, USC Price School of Public Policy, Planning, and Development
  • Lawrence A. Palinkas, PhD (Executive Team), USC School of Social Work
  • Parveen Parmar, MD, MPH, Associate Professor, Keck School of Medicine of USC, Division of International Emergency Medicine
  • Jonathan Samet, MD (Executive Team), Keck School of Medicine of USC, Institute for
  • Global Health
  • William Vega, PhD, USC School of Social Work
  • Heather Wipfli, PhD (Co-PI, Executive Team), Keck School of Medicine of USC, Institute for Global Health
  • Mellissa Withers, PhD, Keck School of Medicine of USC, Institute for Global Health

Support

  • Kedric Beasley, (Coordinator & Administrator) USC School of Social Work
  • Larissa Puro, MPW (Communications Manager), Keck School of Medicine of USC, Institute for Global Health 
  • Rosa Barahona (Administrator), Center for Health Equity in the Americas

Films

The impact of immigration and acculturation on the health of immigrants has been understudied. Understanding the health issues and outcomes among different groups of immigrant Americans can provide important information on the interactions between cultures, behaviors, social determinants, and disease development and prevention. To illustrate the health challenges among the racially and ethnically diverse immigrant Americans, we produced the following short films to visually display their experiences. These videos are intended to be used as a conversation starter for discussing the health issues, needs, and intervention strategies among immigrant communities.

The USC Immigrant Health Initiative (iHi) is supported by the USC Collaboration Fund. Our goal is to foster collaborations across disciplines to create new research and educational opportunities addressing immigrant health, to ultimately build a new American culture of health.

Home Away From Home

A Son’s Survival

A Family’s Spirit


News

Many unknowns regarding health inequalities among immigrants (11/9/12) KPCC
“As the Latino and Asian immigrant populations in the U.S. continue to grow, researchers are focusing on addressing health inequities among different groups…” Read the full story »

The Next Immigration Challenge (1/11/12) The New York Times
“The immigration crisis that has roiled American politics for decades has faded into history. Illegal immigration is shrinking to a trickle, if that, and will likely never return to the peak levels of 2000..” Read the full story »

Vega Speaks at First Immigrant Health Initiative Seminar (10/5/11) USC News
“Provost Professor William Vega, executive director of the Edward R. Roybal Institute on Aging at the USC School of Social Work, delivered the inaugural lecture for the Immigrant Health Initiative seminar series on Sept. 29 at the Ronald Tutor Campus Center.” Read the full story »

New Health Initiative Focuses on Immigrants (9/6/11) USC News
“A diverse panel of experts from eight USC schools, led by Lihua Liu, assistant professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, recently formed a new public health initiative to focus on the health of immigrants in the United States.” Read the full story »