Read More News Articles



Nicole Serrant Ayes: Improving Access to Cancer Care Services


Ayes Nicole Exito 2018 participant

Nicole Serrant Ayes is always up for a challenge. In fact, she’s already proven this by taking the challenging trek up Machu Picchu. Serrant Ayes also spent two years as a biologist and a research assistant at a Veteran’s Affairs Hospital collaborating in different cancer projects. With two grandfathers who survived prostate cancer, she is now determined to help others at risk, by improving access to services. She is currently finishing up her master’s degree of public health in epidemiology at the University of Puerto Rico-Medical Sciences Campus. To further her experience and education, Serrant Ayes applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program. The Éxito! program, led by Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez at UT Health San Antonio with support from ...

Read More

Ileana Cepeda: Former Rugby Player Now Tackles Health Disparities


CepedaIleana exito participant 2018

Ileana Cepeda, a former rugby player, cares about tackling health disparities from many angles, the same type of caring she learned from her abuelita. Cepeda serves as a research associate for the JUNTOS Against Cancer initiative at the University of Kansas Cancer Center and JUNTOS Center for Advancing Latino Health. She is also part of the new Health Equity Steering Committee for the Cancer Center. Additionally, she supports the PeRson EmPowered Asthma Relief (PREPARE) Study at the American Academy of Family Physicians as the bilingual research associate. Cepeda received her master’s degree of public health from Kansas State University in 2017 and her bachelor’s degree in biology from Newman University- Kansas Catholic College in 2015. To further her experience and ...

Read More

Ruling Against Obamacare Could Seriously Affect Latinos


doctor and patient health care coverage insurance

On the heels of a likely second-straight year of declining healthcare enrollment, a Texas judge has ruled that core elements of Obamacare are unconstitutional and make the entire law invalid, CNN reports. The ruling is expected to be appealed, which could take months. It won't affect 2019 insurance plans. But legal experts say the ruling does cast doubts about the future of health coverage for millions of Americans via Obamacare exchanges (the Affordable Care Act) and in Medicaid expansion. If Obamacare went away, between 61 and 133 million people with some type of pre-existing health condition would lose coverage. As a result, they would be forced to pay much higher insurance premiums, and would be subject to a longer waiting period. Meanwhile, around four million Latinos ...

Read More

Andrea Cruz: Studying Environmental Pollutants and Cancer


Cruz Andrea exito participant 2018

Andrea Cruz, raised in Los Angeles but now living in a Midwest U.S. city where she only knows a few Latinos, keeps a rosary to remind her of her culture and her family. Now she’s doing an excellent job representing Latinos by studying the sciences and actively learning how to apply that knowledge to public health issues like the correlation between environmental pollutants and cancer in women. Cruz recently graduated from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, with a master’s degree in toxicology. She studied the mechanism in which phthalates can cause neural tube defects in rodent models and looked for correlations between copy number alterations and DNA methylation in colon cancer tissue. To further her experience and education, Cruz applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer ...

Read More

Fatima Frausto: Working to Solve Latino Health Inequity


Frausto Fatima exito participant 2018

Fatima Frausto’s parents came from Zacatecas and worked very hard to give her a better future and instill in her a love for learning. This foundation helped propel her to excel in school while learning about public health. Frausto attended UT Austin where she found her calling in conducting research about reproductive health and the Latinx experience. She is now working on her master’s degree of public health in health promotion and behavioral sciences at the UT Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health. She has personally seen and experienced health inequities. This is something she intends to address in her future research. To further her experience and education, Frausto applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program. The ...

Read More

Update: Farm Bill Passes with No Cuts to SNAP


SNAP federal food assistance protect poverty

The Farm Bill cleared the U.S. House on a 369–47 vote after passing the Senate with a vote of 87–13, and cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are not included, according to the Food Research & Action Center. Past versions of the bill had contained a $20 billion cut of SNAP over 10 years. “The negotiators appear to have achieved a bipartisan compromise that maintains and modestly strengthens SNAP, ensuring that millions of struggling Americans will continue to be able to count on SNAP to help them put food on the table,” Robert Greenstein, president of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, told the Washington Post. This is great news for Latinos and all. SNAP is proven to: Lifts millions of people out of poverty and helps them stay ...

Read More

Why Are Fewer Latinos Enrolling in Obamacare This Year?


obamacar ACA health coverage insurance enrollment

Healthcare agencies are seeing a big decline in the number of Central Texas Latinos signing up for Obamacare health insurance through HealthCare.gov, TPR reports. This decline might be happening in other Latino-populated parts of the U.S., too. In fact, with less than a week before the sign-up period for 2019 Obamacare plans ends on Dec. 15, 2018, national health insurance sign-ups are down 11% through the first five weeks compared with the same time last year via HealthCare.gov, the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchange. Why the Decline? Experts who have been following ACA enrollment closely cite several factors. According the latest reports, the Trump administration erased a Latino outreach guide from the ACA website. This violates ACA regulations ...

Read More

Edgar Muñoz: Generating Stats on Latino Health … with a Smile


MunozEdgar Exito 2018 participant

Edgar Muñoz has a passion for uncovering multilevel aspects of cancer and disease among the Latino population in the United States and in his native Colombia. And he’s always willing to lend a hand and a smile whenever needed. Muñoz offers plenty of smiles and epidemiological support as a senior-level statistician at the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at UT Health San Antonio. At the IHPR, Muñoz assists in developing research, conducting analyses, identifying and using available methodologies and databases, and preparing reports. He has a master’s degree in epidemiology, and he has participated in the design, conduction, analysis, and evaluation of complex public health interventions in Colombia and the U.S. His interests are design and evaluation of ...

Read More