Professor emerita named to national panel that makes health recommendations

Sandra Millon Underwood, a UWM professor emerita of nursing, has been named to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, an independent panel of national experts that works to improve the health of Americans by making recommendations about clinical preventive services, such as screenings, behavioral counseling and preventive medications.

Sandra Millon Underwood

Preventive services can detect disease at earlier stages when it is more treatable or can reduce a person’s risk for developing a disease. But can happen only when clinicians have access to trustworthy, evidence-based information about which preventive services work.

Task force recommendations are created for primary care professionals by primary care professionals. The current panel is made up of 16 volunteer members who come from fields that include internal medicine, family medicine, pediatrics, behavioral health, obstetrics/gynecology and nursing.

Millon Underwood is a nurse researcher, educator and clinician with 40 years of experience in the design, implementation and evaluation of programs that aim to foster diversity, inclusion and health equity. She joined the UWM faculty in 1989.

Her research projects have addressed disparities in cancer education, cancer prevention and cancer control among minority, economically challenged and marginalized populations. The National Cancer Institute, American Cancer Society, Sigma Theta Tau International, Wisconsin Genomics Institute and Wisconsin Department of Health have funded this work. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and has received numerous awards for teaching, scholarship and service.

“I am happy to welcome Millon Underwood,” said Dr. Carol Mangione, task force chair and professor of medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles. “Her research on the prevention of diabetes, heart disease and cancer in underserved communities will be a valuable addition to the task force, especially as we continue to address health inequities.”

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