Goals, Mission, and Vision





Who We Are



Directions to CBEACH

Behavioral Ecological Model



To help prevent morbidity and mortality in all populations, with special emphasis on high risk groups, especially low income and ethnic/racial minorities

To study individual and population behavior that prevents or contributes to the cause of disease and injury (with a focus on the etiology of health behavior)

To conduct non-intervention and clinical trials to determine the factors most responsible for lifestyle practices related to morbidity and mortality

To establish a network and collaboration among basic, clinical, behavioral, epidemiological, and community researchers; and to integrate basic science through community investigations with community services for control of disease

To obtain input from key community-based organizations to insure the most responsive science from basic science through community studies and to insure the translation of science to community services

To recruit community-based organizations to insure participation of low-income and minority samples in basic, clinical and community studies and facilitate development of effective heatlh services with behavioral components for underserved high-risk populations

To establish ongoing dialog with community-based, government-based organizations and investigators from which improved environmental health policies, for the control of asthma, TB, and other diseases, can be effected



The Center for Behavioral Epidemiology and Community Health is an interdisciplinary extra-murally funded research association, affiliated with the Graduate School of Public Health, College of Health and Human Services, San Diego State University. Dr. Melbourne F. Hovell serves as Executive Director, and Dr. Donald Slymen (SDSU faculty), serves Co-Director. Associate Investigators from other departments from SDSU and from UCSD, as well as medical and public health institutions collaborate on funded and unfunded investigations.

The Center makes possible a broad net of professionals who can turn to one another for incidental as well as contracted assistance in the design and conduct of studies. The defining characteristic of the Center is a focus on the etiology of health behavior. Both non-intervention and clinical trials are conducted to determine the factors most responsible for lifestyle practices related to morbidity and mortality.

Because the Center focuses on health related behavior--either protective practices or risk practices--it has been concerned with a wide range of public health and medical concerns. These have included the following:

  • tobacco prevention in youth
  • environmental tobacco exposure reduction in children
  • STDs, AIDS and pregnancy prevention in adolescents
  • STDs and AIDS prevention in women and divorced adults
  • nutrition (diet practices) and physical activity promotion in youth and adults
  • compliance with medical regimens
  • violence and anger prevention
  • injury control
  • enhancing clinician's use of preventive medicine services
  • health services
  • health policy

These studies have been conducted with well and ill populations, including:

  • children with cystic fibrosis, asthma, arthritis, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, STDs, breast cancer, acute illnesses/injury requiring intensive care hospitalization, hepatitis

The Center does not limit research to specific disease or anatomical systems (e.g. diseases of the blood), but emphasizes individual and population behavior that prevents or contributes to the cause of disease and injury.

Though the Center is concerned with preventing morbidity and mortality in all populations, emphasis is placed on high risk groups:

  • low income
  • women
  • children
  • ethnic/racial minorities