Alicia <span>L.</span> Best, PhD, MPH
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Alicia L. Best, PhD, MPH

Overview

Discipline

    • Health Outcomes & Behavior Program

Education & Training

    • Morehouse School of Medicine, MPH - Community Health and Preventative Medicine
    • University of South Carolina Arnold School of Medicine, PhD - Health Promotion, Education and Behavior
Research

Dr. Alicia Best is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Community and Family Health in the College of Public Health at the University of South Florida (USF). She is a socio-behavioral researcher and certified health education specialist (CHES) with academic training and experience in health education and promotion, health communications, and cancer-related health disparities. Dr. Best earned an MPH in Health Education and Health Promotion from Morehouse School of Medicine, as well as a PhD in Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior and a Certificate of Graduate Study in Health Communications from the University of South Carolina’s Arnold School of Public Health. She also received postdoctoral training in behavioral research with a focus on cancer disparities at the American Cancer Society. Dr. Best conducts original research focused on the role of social and cultural factors in health cognitions, health behaviors, and health-related quality of life. She is also interested in the use of communication strategies to better reach marginalized groups. To this end, her work has focused on mechanisms through which spiritualty impacts the effectiveness of breast cancer screening messages among African American women, as well as how spirituality influences self-rated health among cancer survivors. Her research extends beyond measuring health disparities to the actual implementation and evaluation of interventions designed to improve the health of underserved communities. Prior to joining USF, Dr. Best served as Director of Research and Community Health at a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) in one of Metropolitan Atlanta’s most disadvantaged neighborhoods. She has extensive experience in community health education, community-engaged research, and health promotion program implementation and evaluation within underserved communities.

Publications

  • Best AL, Vamos C, Choi SK, Thompson EL, Daley E, Friedman DB. Increasing Routine Cancer Screening Among Underserved Populations Through Effective Communication Strategies: Application of a Health Literacy Framework. J Cancer Educ. 2017 Jun;32(2):213-217. Pubmedid: 28275965.
  • Best AL, Vamos C, Choi SK, Thompson EL, Daley E, Friedman DB. Erratum to: Increasing Routine Cancer Screening Among Underserved Populations Through Effective Communication Strategies: Application of a Health Literacy Framework. J Cancer Educ. 2017 Jun;32(2):218. Pubmedid: 28401512.
  • Best AL, Strane A, Christie O, Bynum S, Wiltshire J. Examining the Influence of Cost Concern and Awareness of Low-cost Health Care on Cancer Screening among the Medically Underserved. J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2017 Feb;28(1):79-87. Pubmedid: 28238989.
  • Thompson EL, Best AL, Vamos CA, Daley EM. "My mom said it wasn't important": A case for catch-up human papillomavirus vaccination among young adult women in the United States. Prev Med. 2017 Dec;105:1-4. Pubmedid: 28823755.
  • Best AL, Spencer M, Hall IJ, Friedman DB, Billings D. Developing spiritually framed breast cancer screening messages in consultation with African American women. Health Commun. 2016 Oct;30(3):290-300. Pubmedid: 24837069.
  • Best AL, Spencer SM, Friedman DB, Hall IJ, Billings D. The Influence of Spiritual Framing on African American Women's Mammography Intentions: A Randomized Trial. J Health Commun. 2016 Jun;21(6):620-628. Pubmedid: 27142231. Pmcid: PMC4946341.
  • Daley EM, Thompson EL, Vamos CA, Griner SB, Vazquez-Otero C, Best AL, Kline NS, Merrell LK. HPV-Related Knowledge Among Dentists and Dental Hygienists. J Cancer Educ. 2016 Dec. Pubmedid: 28039675.
  • Best AL, Alcaraz KI, McQueen A, Cooper DL, Warren RC, Stein K. Examining the mediating role of cancer-related problems on spirituality and self-rated health among African American cancer survivors: a report from the American Cancer Society's Studies of Cancer Survivors-II. Psychooncology. 2015 Sep;24(9):1051-1059. Pubmedid: 25378081.