Yvette Pavon: Living Life Better After Breast Cancer


Yvette Pavon breast cancer survivor 1

By Yvette Pavon San Antonio Cancer Survivor At the age of 42, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was found after my very first mammogram. Never did I think that a check up that I had scheduled only because it was something that women did when they got older, would discover I had cancer. I had no symptoms. When my gynecologist shared the news with me in her office, I think I was in complete denial. I mean I went for this mammogram on my own free will, not because of my doctor's concern. I remember going to dinner that night with my father, stepmother, and newly boyfriend. I wasn't scared when talking about it. I knew letting my mind run wild would not help, so I talked to God that night. "God, please give me the strength and courage that I need to get through ...

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Stories Spurring on Systemic Shifts: Salud America!’s 10-Year, Steadfast Strive


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Latinos on the U.S.-Mexico border struggle with debilitating illnesses for years, but often lack proper healthcare because of socioeconomic, accessibility, or other inequalities. Dr. Amelie Ramirez grew up seeing these disparities in South Texas. She was driving to pursue a public health education and tirelessly toil to establish projects that assist the underprivileged. Perhaps Ramirez’s most innovative project, Salud America! has worked since 2007 to create a wide-reaching library of resources and actions, which greatly impact the personal and public health mindset of advocates, schools, and policymakers. Salud America! content is vital to advance the well-being of Latinos, Ramirez said. “The health inequities Latinos face was then, and continues to be, something to ...

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Why 2 Latino Cities Rank as the Least Healthy in U.S.



Two Texas cities—Laredo (95.4% Latino) and Brownsville (93.9% Latino)—rank as the least healthy U.S. cities, according to the 2019 Healthiest & Unhealthiest Cities in America by WalletHub. The ranking scores 174 large cities based on 42 health indicators. They look at cost of medical visits, and the number of dieticians and mental health counselors. They also factor in the amount of green space, trails, and healthy restaurants. Healthy food consumption and physical activity also has weight. "Some places promote wellness by expanding access to nutritious food and recreational facilities. Others strive to keep healthcare costs affordable for everyone or keep parks clean and well-maintained," according to WalletHub. "When a city doesn’t take care of these issues, it can ...

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As Trump Vows to End to HIV, Epidemic Continues Huge Rise among Latinos


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Just weeks after President Donald Trump unveiled a plan to end the HIV epidemic by 2030, a CDC report showed a rising trend in HIV cases among Latinos. Overall, the U.S. HIV rate declined by 6% from 2010-2016, according to the CDC. But the Latino HIV rate rose 14% over the same span. The disparity is even more stark among Latino gay and bisexual men, who suffered a 30% rise in HIV cases. The rate actually fell 16% among white gay and bisexual men. "This CDC report shows an alarming trend that is urgent to address," said Guillermo Chacon, of the Latino Commission on AIDS, in an email. "The messenger matters and in this case customized prevention strategies by population matters even more. It is critical to re-set and review the prevention and engagement efforts to reverse this ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 3/26: National Diabetes Alert Day


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Latinos are twice as likely as whites to develop and die from diabetes in their lifetime. Diabetes threatens the health of Latino regions across the country. In Texas, 13% of San Antonio's population has diabetes. 17% of people have diabetes in border cities of Brownsville and Laredo, some of the highest rates in the nation. Latino-populated California has three diabetes-prone cities, Compton (16.5%), Lynwood (16.4%) and Southgate (15%). The scary thing is that many Latinos are unaware that they even have diabetes. On Tuesday, March 26, 2019, let's use #SaludTues on Twitter to chat how to promote awareness of diabetes risk factors and preventive solutions during #DiabetesAlertDay! TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. ET (Noon-1 p.m. CT), Tuesday, March 26, 2019 WHERE: On Twitter with ...

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Amy Perez: The Fight to Overcome Breast Cancer at Age 22


Amy Perez - breast cancer survivor - with her family

By Amy Perez San Antonio Cancer Survivor Just after my 22nd birthday while putting on tanning lotion, I noticed a hard lump in my chest that I hadn’t noticed before. My mom works at MD Anderson in Houston, so I told her about the lump as soon as I noticed it, and she helped me get an appointment to get the lump checked out. My cancer was far enough along to where there was no waiting for results. They told me before I left the hospital that day that I had cancer. I began chemo right away but my body was resistant to it. At the end of 6 months of chemo my tumor was 10x larger than when I had started. My doctors told me that I was inoperable, which is pretty hard news at just 22. As if having cancer and struggling with treatment wasn’t hard enough, I also had an ...

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New Study: Latinas in Texas Have the Worst C-section Outcomes


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Latinas who live on the U.S. Southwest border have more surgical infant delivery rates than their peers in the rest of the country. Not only do those who reside on the border experience cesarean section, or C-section, more often, but Latinas have overall higher rates than white women, according to a New Mexico State University study. This was not the case six years ago. Jill McDonald, who serves as the director of the Southwest Institute for Health Disparities Research in the College of Health and Social Services at NMSU, told the Santa Fe New Mexican before 2013, Latinas had lower numbers than white women. “Now, Hispanic women are more likely to have a cesarean birth than non-Hispanic white women,” McDonald said. Maternal Disparities Latinas already suffer from ...

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Amelie Ramirez Wins Health Equity Lifetime Achievement Award


amelie ramirez health equity in 2014

Congratulations to Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez, director of Salud America! at UT Health San Antonio, on being selected for the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Health Equity Special Interest Group of the Society of Behavioral Medicine! This honor recognizes substantial scholarly contributions to health equity research in behavioral medicine over a career. Ramirez will be formally recognized March 8, 2019, during a Health Equity Special Interest Group gathering at the 40th Annual Meeting & Scientific Sessions of the Society of Behavioral Medicine in Washington, D.C. “I’m very thankful for this award from such a prestigious group as the Society of Behavioral Medicine, which is a recognition of our ongoing work to promote Latino health equity across the nation,” Ramirez ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 3/5: The Sleep Crisis & Latino Health


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Are you getting enough sleep? The United States is facing a sleep crisis. Lack of sleep can contribute to heart attacks, diabetes, and other serious health issues that affect Latinos more, says the CDC. It can also affect mood and memory. Let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, March 5, 2019, to tweet about the sleep crisis in the United States, the importance of sleep for disease prevention, and ways to improve sleep for Latino and all people. WHAT: #SaludTues Tweetchat: “The Sleep Crisis & Latino Health” TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. ET (Noon-1 p.m. CT), Tuesday, March 5, 2019 WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: @SaludAmerica CO-HOSTS: Diverse Elders (@DiverseElders), The American Academy of Sleep Medicine  (@AASMorg),Hamilton Community Health Network ...

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