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The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture

UT Extension TEAM Up Tennessee

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TEAM UP Tennessee: The Partnership

Picture of Blount County Cancer Screening Event PartnersCancer Screening Saves Lives

Who Are We

TEAM UP TN is a unique collaboration with the Tennessee Breast and Cervical Screening Program and the University of Tennessee (UT) Extension, which began in 2003. Each of these organizations has a representative that provides resources on the local level, whether on a county basis or a regional basis. While the resources provided to residents vary from form, type and topic, TEAM UP TN is packaging the strengths of each partner as to needed resources (educational, promotional, media, funding, professional expertise) and clinical services to empower Tennesseans to overcome barriers to understanding the importance of cancer screening and accessing screening services.

What We Do

TEAM UP TN utilizes a partnership strategy to educate Tennesseans about cancer prevention and the importance of early cancer screening in saving lives and to increase access to screening services. This strategy combines the outreach capacity of UT Extension with the service delivery of TBCSP.

Through county partnerships across the state, TEAM UP TN strives to:

  • Increase access to accurate information about cancer risks, cancer prevention and the need for screening through education.
  • Address access barriers (medical shortages, rural residency, geographic isolation, socioeconomic and cultural factors and misinformation) to screening through education and mobilization of community resources.
  • Address reluctance and fear of screening through education.
  • Promote the value of early detection of cancer through screening.
  • Motivate people to talk to their doctor about age appropriate screenings for cancer.

At the county level, TEAM UP partnerships are facilitated by county University of Tennessee educators and include representatives from the American Cancer Society, county health department and other community members concerned about decreasing breast and cervical cancer mortality through education and screening access. Funding for educational program activities addressing breast cancer may be applied for though Komen for the Cure Affiliates.

Conceptual Framework for TEAM UP TN

A partnership conceptual model is being used, which is composed of three components: organizational capacity, process and outcome/impact components. After the pilot phase of the program, the model was expanded to include a partnership empowerment component. This component addresses the interaction among the partners at the state and local levels: cancer experts (state and national partners), county UT Extension educators and county partners. All the partners brought clout, diversity (range of skills, expertise and cultural perspectives) and commitment to the project. In this partnership, all partners in the relationship won. When this happens, a strong incentive is created to sustain and build further on these relationships and establish new projects that will continue to enhance the strength and solidarity of the community program effort.

  • Francisco, VT, Paine, AL, Fawcett, SB: A Methodology for Monitoring and Evaluating Community Health Coalitions. Health Educ Res 8(3):403-16, 1993.
  • Kluhsman, BS, Bencivenga, M, Ward, AJ, et al: Initiatives of 11 Rural Appalachian Cancer Coalitions in Pennsylvania and New York. Prev Chronic Dis. 2006 Oct;3(4):A122. Epub 2006 Sep 15. (