Community Engagement Alliance (CEAL)The Community Engagement Alliance (CEAL) is an NIH-funded, state-based outreach and engagement effort in ethnic and racial minority communities disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The NIH CEAL program supports teams in 11 states, including Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana, each using a multi-modal approach to

1) identify trusted sources of information and strategies to counter misinformation, distrust, and skepticism of COVID-19 information and guidelines
2) evaluate the effectiveness of communication strategies to deliver health information, and
3) overcome barriers to clinical trial participation and vaccination among disproportionately affected populations.

Researchers across the CCTS Partner Network are advancing the goals of CEAL.

Sharing Strategies Across Our Region

Sharing Strategies Across Our Region

Southern Commonweal MapThe CCTS Southern Commonweal serves as the interstate platform for sharing successful CEAL strategies in engagement, communication, and recruitment in the southeast. Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana are all represented in the Southern Commonweal, a CCTS initiative designed to drive conversation and enhance partnerships that ameliorate our common health challenges in the Deep South. 

Partners in Alabama, including the UAB Minority Health & Health Disparities Research Center, Acclinate Genetics, Auburn University, the Alabama Department of Public Health, Jefferson County Department of Public Health, Tuskegee University, the University of Alabama, the University of South Alabama, City of Bessemer, City of Prichard, and the Jefferson County Committee for Economic Opportunity (JCCEO), play critical roles in dissemination, training community health advocates, survey implementation, and educational outreach for Alabama CEAL.

Real Talk About COVID-19 and Vaccines with Dr. Marrazzo and Dr. Vickers(Register at the bottom of this page to view these free educational video
resources on COVID-19 and vaccines, presented by the AL CEAL. 



The Mississippi CEAL team includes researchers from CCTS Partner University of Mississippi Medical Center, the Mississippi State Department of Health, Tougaloo College, and the University of Southern Mississippi.

Lousiana CEAL is a collaborative effort of Louisiana universities, including CCTS Partner Tulane University, in partnership with federally qualified health centers (FQHCs), faith-based organizations, community pharmacies, the Urban League of Louisiana, and the Skin You’re In (TSYI) project, in coordination with the Louisiana Department of Health.

Supporting and Expanding Community Outreach

Supporting and Expanding Community Outreach

The Alabama CEAL program is complemented by the efforts underway by the Hub’s Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics in Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) initiative. This effort, to maximize reach, effectiveness, and sustainability of SARS-CoV-2 testing and mitigation with underserved communities disproportionately impacted by COVID-19, leverages expertise in infectious diseases and relationships with federally qualified health centers across Alabama by the UAB Center for AIDS Research (CFAR).  RADx-UP initiatives are also underway at a local level, spearhead by the UAB Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Center, the CCTS and the Jefferson County Department of Health.

CEAL Resources