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Julia Weis

Julia Weis joined Salud America! and its home base, the Institute for Health Promotion Research at UT Health San Antonio, in September 2020. With a degree in Communication from Trinity University, Julia has previously worked in journalism, marketing, graphic design, and technical writing. She loves biking and hiking in the Central Texas outdoors and is passionate about environmental and social justice issues.


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Articles by Julia Weis

Comment Now: Increase Latino Representation in Alzheimer’s Clinical Trials!


comment latino representation in clinical trials alzheimers doctor patient

The National Institute of Aging (NIA) is seeking comments and suggestions on how it can implement community-based research networks to increase diversity in clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD). At Salud America!, we believe that diverse representation is critical in Alzheimer's clinical trials to ensure that health and medical discoveries are equitable for diverse populations. This means increasing diversity among research leaders and clinical trial participants and establishing sustainable connections with Latino communities and other communities of color who have historically been underrepresented in medicine. If you agree, you can endorse Dr. Amelie Ramirez’s comment to NIA. Responses will be accepted through Saturday April 9, ...

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Introducing Clean Hands & Spaces Bilingual Training


Introducing Clean Hands & Spaces Bilingual Training

Did you know that good hand hygiene can result in less gastrointestinal and respiratory illness and fewer missed school days? Good hygiene practices are an important strategy to keep everyone in schools and early care and education (ECE) facilities healthy. But good hygiene practices aren’t always easy to implement in busy educational settings. The good news is that new resources are available to help K-12 and ECE staff learn how to best encourage good hygiene practices in their educational settings. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the CDC Foundation have developed a free, interactive, online training on hand hygiene and cleaning. The Clean Hands and Spaces online training was created specifically for educators, administrators, and supporting ...

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Gregory Aune: The Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Bike Ride


greg aune Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Bike Ride bike ride event

Gregory Aune was 16 when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Aune spent a year enduring grueling treatment, losing over 70 pounds. But he survived. His experience motivated him to pursue a clinical career and help children with cancer. Today, Dr. Aune is an associate professor of pediatric hematology and oncology at the Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute (GCCRI) of UT Health San Antonio, on a mission to find new ways to help and heal patients. That's why he helped found the Gear Up Against Kids Cancer Bike Ride — to raise awareness of childhood cancer and support the mission of the GCCRI. The inaugural bike ride will take place at 8 a.m. CT on April 2, 2022, in Floresville, Texas, after having been postponed for two years due to COVID-19. REGISTER ...

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María Elena Bottazzi: The Latina Scientist Who Helped Create a COVID-19 Vaccine


Maria bottazzi

When María Elena Bottazzi left Honduras, she never expected to one day be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. Bottazzi is a microbiologist at the Texas’s Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Tex. She, along with Dr. Peter Hotez of Baylor Medicine, created the Corbevax vaccine for COVID-19. They wanted to create a unique vaccine that was patent-free and cheaper to produce than the vaccines already on the market. “Peter and I aspire to benefit people, which is why we created a vaccine for the poorest communities in the world. The team that we have built shares the same interest in promoting public health and, obviously, learning at the same time,” Bottazzi said, according to NBC Latino. Bottazzi and Hotez were ...

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Sugary Drinks Increase Prediabetes Risk for Latinos


Sugary Drinks Increase Prediabetes Risk for Latinos

Consuming sugary drinks like soda and juice may increase the risk of prediabetes for Latino adults, according to a new study from Duke University School of Medicine. “What we found in this study is that unfortunately, having more than two drinks a day does increase your risk and is associated with having prediabetes,” said Dr. Leonor Corsino of the Duke University School of Medicine, according to CBS17. Latinos are at high risk for diabetes and other medical conditions. It’s important that we reduce sugary drink consumption, especially for Latino youth. What Did the Study Find on Prediabetes and Sugary Drinks? Corsino and her research team collected data from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos, which is the most comprehensive long-term study of health ...

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Gus Alva: Helping Latinos Heal from Parkinson’s Through Storytelling


gus alva

Living with a cognitive disease is difficult because of how it impacts you and those around you. It can create a stigma, which prevents people from seeking help. This stigma can be worse for Latinos, who face cultural barriers and are often affected by these disorders at a high rate. That’s why physicians like Dr. Gus Alva are trying to help Latinos heal from diseases like Parkinson’s. He teamed up with Acadia Pharmaceuticals and StoryCorps nonprofit for the “Yours, Truly” campaign, a bilingual effort to use multicultural storytelling to bring awareness to the non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. “This campaign is quite important because it really lends to the public an opportunity of being able through storytelling to convey some very important information ...

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Study: Poor Kidney Function Linked to Dementia


Study: Poor Kidney Function Linked to Dementia

Declining kidney function is strongly linked to dementia, according to a 10-year study of older adults. This has negative implications for Latinos, who are not only at a high risk for Alzheimer’s and related dementias, but also for chronic kidney disease (CKD). “The kidneys and the brain, both being end organs, are thought to be susceptible to vascular damage due to similar anatomic and hemodynamic features,” according to the researchers. Learn more about what the study found on the link between poor kidney function and dementia, why Latinos are disproportionately affected by these diseases, and how we can help further the research of Latino chronic disease through clinical trials. What Did the Study Find on Kidney Function and Dementia? Researchers from the University ...

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Moderna Launches First Ever HIV Vaccine Clinical Trial


Moderna Launches First Ever HIV Vaccine Clinical Trial

Forty years after the virus was discovered, an HIV vaccine is finally in development. Moderna and the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) are launching the first clinical trial for an HIV vaccine. “The search for an HIV vaccine has been long and challenging, and having new tools in terms of immunogens and platforms could be the key to making rapid progress toward an urgently needed, effective HIV vaccine," said Mark Feinberg, president and CEO of IAVI, according to a press release. This vaccine is particularly impactful for Latinos and other people of color, who are disproportionately affected by HIV and AIDS and are underrepresented in clinical trials. Learn more about the HIV vaccine clinical trial, how Latinos are impacted by HIV/AIDS, and how clinical trials can ...

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Latinos Have Highest Rate of Physical Inactivity, Due to Structural Barriers


Latinos Have Highest Rate of Physical Inactivity, Due to Structural Barriers

32.1% of Latinos are physically inactive outside of work, putting them in danger of health issues from obesity to cancer, according to a new report from CDC. This is the highest percentage of inactivity among racial/ethnic groups. The disparity is largely due to structural barriers like lack of access to safe and convenient places to exercise, according to the report. “Reducing physical inactivity requires a comprehensive effort from many groups—including states, communities, worksites, and individuals—to make it easier for everyone to move more,” according to the CDC report. Learn more about the data on physical activity, reasons why Latinos have higher rates of inactivity, and what can be done to make physical activity more equitable and accessible for Latinos and ...

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