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Better Health, Fewer Disparities

10 Aug 2005

By Caroline Clauss-Ehlers

A study found that 10% of the 41 million Latinos living in the United States suffer from diabetes. In addition, obesity is twice as likely to occur among Latino youth between 16 and 19 years of age in comparison to youth of the same age from other ethnic groups. Moreover, a serious dental problem exists in our community that results from a lack of medical insurance.

The interns of the summer Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI) organized a health fair for the Latino community on July 30th. The objectives of the fair were to offer information about the impact that diet has on the incidence of diabetes, obesity, and dental care among the Hispanic community.

On July 28th, members of the Congressional TriCaucus met with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi to present the Healthcare Equality and Accountability Act. This law addresses the problem of healthcare disparity among patients from minority communities in the United States. The goals of the Healthcare Equality and Accountability Act are to improve health care for minority groups, and eliminate barriers that relate to language and cultural differences. The law also seeks to improve diversity in the workforce, support programs that seek to diminish health care disparities, and strengthen institutions dedicated to providing health care services to minority communities.

"For too long, the Bush administration has tolerated the national tragedy of having one out of three Hispanics and 7.4 million African Americans without health insurance, and other grave health care disparities that minorities face," House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said. "Fortunately, Democrats have a plan to expand health insurance and improve the quality of health care. Democrats are committed to ensuring that all communities have equal access to quality health care."

This column is educational. It does not substitute for formal medical advice.

Send your questions to Nueva Edad/Hoy, 330 West 34St., 17th Floor, New York, NY 10001 Or call (212) 462-9464

Copyright 2005. Used with permission from Hoy.

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