Category Archives: Health

Not-So-Universal Health Care

Regardless of your personal thoughts on the new Affordable Care Act, whether you think it is compassionate care or government overreach, one thing is clear, factual and non-debatable: undocumented workers will not have access to health care insurance under this law. I don’t want to take this space to debate whether or not the law should allow tax dollars to provide services for undocumented immigrants. That’s a debate for another place and time. What I want to focus on is an issue that has mostly gone without discussion or concern: how will the new health care law affect undocumented Latinos? … Continue Reading →

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Helping Without Creating Dependency

Good intentions are often just not good enough. We try our best to help our community and the families we serve by providing free services and bending over backwards to be accommodating and do as much as we can to assist them. But at what point is our help simply creating dependency and contributing to the long-term problems our community faces? Are free services taken for granted and unappreciated simply because they are offered for free? If the people we are trying to help had to pay for the services in some way, whether monetarily or in a different way, would the services be more effective? I don’t have the answers, but I sure do think that it’s a discussion worth having and that a better way, though perhaps yet undiscovered, must exist. … Continue Reading →

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Changing Lives at the Mujer Sagrada Retreat

I think the term “life-changing moment” is woefully overused. Yet there is no other way to describe the events at the recent Latino Leadership Council Retiro (retreat), MujerSagrada (Sacred Woman). In fact, what I witnessed was life-changing moment after life-changing moment. Including changes in my own life. … Continue Reading →

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Manning Up to Machismo

One of the most prevalent characteristics of our Latino culture is machismo, which in history used to be about chivalry, responsibility and strength of character and has now evolved into tough-minded, individualistic, tough-as-nails mindset and approach of many Latino men. And while machismo has many benefits – including the strong sense of responsibility to care for the needs of one’s family, the strong work ethic even in tough work conditions and the determination to provide for one’s loved ones regardless of the obstacles – it also causes a lot of tension and issues in the family and within our Latino men.p
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Latino Teens and Alcohol in Placer County

Recently our YEAGA and ALTA youth conducted a survey of Latino teenagers and parents in Placer County to try and better understand teens’ perspectives on alcohol use. What we found was troubling, and serves as a call for our community to look introspectively at how we facilitate underage drinking. … Continue Reading →

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Promotores as Part of Integrated Patient Care

As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in a hospital setting, I am reminded every day of the important role promotores, or community health workers, play in the health and recovery of patients in our community. Promotores are invaluable partners, educators and collaborators; unfortunately many physicians, nurses, case managers, social workers, therapists and other health professionals are not aware of the expertise promotores bring, thus don’t know how to incorporate their services into the patients’ care. … Continue Reading →

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