UH professor wins Prevention Science Award, a first for Hawaiʻi … – Hawaiipublicradio

A researcher at the University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center has garnered this year’s Prevention Science Award, a prestigious prize for contributing research about prevention in the medical sphere.

Dr. Scott Okamoto is the first person from Hawaiʻi to receive this recognition, according to UH.

Dr. Scott Okamoto won the 2023 Prevention Science Award.

The Society for Prevention Research recognized Okamoto for his work with Hawaiʻi Island public intermediate schools’ tobacco and drug prevention curriculum for rural Native Hawaiian youth.

His overall research focuses on the social determinants of health and developing prevention plans for underserved communities.

“Dr. Okamoto’s work is integrated into the Hawaiʻi community and has impacted thousands of students through shifting their trajectory and delaying onset of substance use concerns,” said Kelsie Okamura, implementation researcher at Harvard University, in a news release.

“His research creates a path to independence for other scholars, social workers, and substance use prevention professionals who desire to serve those in communities that need them the most,” she said.

He’s currently working on a new curriculum for e-cigarette prevention. He earned a $2.8 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Over 500 people are expected to participate in the survey over five years.

This post was originally published on this site