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Heart Disease is No. 1 Killer of Latinas; Find Helpful Resources in Spanish



Heart Disease is the No. 1 killer of Hispanic women, taking the life of one woman a minute. However, despite this heightened risk, most are still unaware of the threat to themselves and their families. The treatment of diseases like high blood pressure, high blood sugar levels, and high cholesterol is guided by a set of general recommendations that the American Heart Association has been publishing since 1999 as a critical “weapon” in the fight against heart disease. Recently, these official guidelines were updated to include new research information, especially with regard to heart health in women. The updated guidelines also emphasize the importance of recognizing racial and ethnic diversity and its impact on cardiovascular disease. "These recommendations underscore the ...

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Gaining Costs, Losing Time: The Obesity Crisis in Texas



The number of Texans who are overweight or obese continues to grow, accounting for a significant jump in the costs borne by Texas employers, according to the Texas State Comptroller of Public Affairs's new report, "Gaining Costs, Losing Time: The Obesity Crisis in Texas." Today, 66.7% of adult Texans are overweight or obese, up from 64.1% in 2005. In Texas, Hispanic and black adults had the highest obesity rates in 2009, at 36.4% and 35.7%, respectively. Child obesity is more common among blacks and Hispanics, too. And Hispanics, which are Texas’ fastest-growing population group, are expected to drive obesity rates higher in future years. The rising cost of treating obesity-related diseases and an aging population with higher rates of obesity also have increased the ...

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Latina, Black Women Face Delays in Breast Cancer Treatment



Black and Hispanic women newly diagnosed with breast cancer often face delays in care of more than a month, a large study has found, according to a news report. The study, which appears in the February issue of the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, found that 62.4% of African-American women and 59.3% of Hispanic women received a diagnosis of stage II or stage III breast cancer compared with 48.9 percent of white women. Delays in treatment were apparent in the new study, as African-American and Hispanic women had higher risks of 30-, 60- and 90-day delays compared to white women. The risk of a 60-day treatment delay was 76% higher among black patients with private insurance than that of white patients with comparable insurance. Hispanics with private insurance had ...

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Web-Based Anti-Smoking Program Targets Hispanic Youth



The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center's free Web-based teen smoking-cessation and prevention program, ASPIRE, now speaks Spanish. ASPIRE (A Smoking Prevention Interactive Experience) aims to prevent middle-school and high-school teens from smoking or help them quit before it becomes a lifelong addiction. The site integrates interactive media, customized messages, graphics, animations and streaming videos. "We've found that participating students are more aware about the dangers of smoking, are making more informed decisions about smoking and are less tempted to start in the first place," said developer Dr. Alexander V. Prokhorov, a professor at MD Anderson. "Removing the language barrier will help tremendously in reaching and educating Hispanic teens, especially those ...

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VIDEO: Expert Discusses Importance of Social Determinants of Health



Dr. Paula Braveman, a health researcher at the University of California, San Francisco, spoke about the importance of social determinants of health on Jan. 27 at the Cancer Therapy and Research Center in San Antonio as part of the new SALSI/CTRC Health Disparities Lecture Series. Braveman's talk highlighted her work measuring, documenting, and understanding socioeconomic and racial/ethnic disparities, for a crowd of nearly 100 people. Watch video of her talk here. The SALSI/CTRC Health Disparities Lecture Series, sponsored by the San Antonio Life Sciences Institute (SALSI) and the CTRC, brings some of the top U.S. health disparities experts to San Antonio to offer the latest trends, tools and advancements in the fight against cancer health disparities. The series is a joint ...

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IHPR Researcher Gets Grant to Study HPV Vaccine Use by South Texas Latinas



Congrats to Dr. Deborah Parra-Medina! The researcher at our Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR), the team behind SaludToday, is one of two researchers at The UT Health Science Center at San Antonio to get a grant in the new round of prevention research awards from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas. Dr. Parra-Medina will receive $297,173 for a peer education and outreach program encouraging use of the HPV vaccine to prevent cervical cancer among Latina mothers and daughters living in Texas-Mexico border communities. The program will train “promotoras,” or community health workers, who will be assisted by female college students to educate Latina mothers and daughters about cervical cancer risk factors and the HPV vaccine, which prevents cervical ...

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Hispanics Have Among the Highest Diabetes Rates



The number of Americans with diabetes has increased from 23.6 million in 2008 to 26 million, and minority groups continue to suffer higher diabetes rates, according to new estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Diabetes affects 8.3% of Americans of all ages, and 11.3% of adults aged 20 and older, according to the CDC's National Diabetes Fact Sheet for 2011. About 27% of those with diabetes—7 million Americans—do not know they have it. Among adults, diabetes rates were 16.1% for American Indians/Alaska Natives, 12.6% for blacks, 11.8% for Hispanics, 8.4% for Asian-Americans, and 7.1 percent for whites. "These distressing numbers show how important it is to prevent type 2 diabetes and to help those who have diabetes manage the disease to prevent ...

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LIVESTRONG Spanish-Language Survey to Gauge Latino Cancer Survivors’ Needs



Anyone who has been affected by cancer is invited to take LIVESTRONG's first-of-its-kind Spanish-language survey to further understand how cancer impacts Latinos and gather data that will inform evidence-based programs, resources and tools to improve their lives and close gaps in health disparities. Survey results, expected to be released laster this year, are expected to provide a comprehensive understanding of how Latinos are living with cancer and help LIVESTRONG and the cancer community improve programs and resources to serve them. Community-specific data will also be available for researchers, program planners and others. Please take the Spanish survey ...

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Texas Children, Especially Hispanics, Face Gaps in Wellbeing



Texas children are falling behind the rest of the country in nearly every aspect of child well-being, according to officials at Austin-based Texans Care for Children, a multi-issue, nonpartisan policy organization, Miller-McCune reports. The 76-page report, “A Report on the Bottom Line: Conditions for Children and the Texas of Tomorrow,” drawing upon Census data, demographic forecasts and national and state data sources, finds Texas is on a course for stunning economic failure unless it closes gaps in well-being for the child population, especially Hispanic children. “A sick, uneducated, unskilled work force does not propel a state forward,” Eileen Garcia, CEO of Texans Care for Children, writes in the report’s preface, according to the news report. “The devastating ...

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