National Hispanic Medical Association to Discuss Ways to Offer Health Insurance to...

National Hispanic Medical Association to Discuss Ways to Offer Health Insurance to Families, Workers Across U.S.-Mexico Border



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Los Angeles, CA–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–March 31, 2005–Creating a binational health insurance program will be among the key topics discussed when Hispanic doctors from across the United States meet in Los Angeles March 31-April 3 for a conference of the National Hispanic Medical Association (NHMA).

“Many Hispanics and their families would benefit from a binational health insurance program, and in some cases, it would mean they could see a doctor for the first time,” said Dr. Elena Rios, NHMA’s president. “Hospitals and health care providers would benefit from treating patients who would no longer be uninsured and thus could afford to pay for their services. It would ease a burden on our health care system, society and families.”

NHMA’s ninth annual conference, and its first in the West Coast – “Medical Practice for the 21st Century: Enhancing Quality Care and Health Literacy” – will be held at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles. More than 1,000 doctors are expected to attend as NHMA, a nonprofit organization that represents Hispanic doctors in the United States, embarks on a national dialogue on improving health care for all Americans.

NHMA is working with Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH), chairman of the U.S. Senate Republican Task Force on Health Care Costs and the Uninsured, to examine the state of U.S.-Mexico cross-border health insurance and how laws should change so workers who have health insurance in one country could also cover their families in another country.

“This Senate task force is offering a creative approach to reduce costs in our health care system that will directly effect our growing Hispanic communities,” Dr. Rios said. It’ll increase the use of health care services and preventive care so people could get help early on and not wait until they are on their deathbed, as many uninsured workers do now.”

In February, NHMA held a forum on binational health insurance for the task force, which is moving forward with introducing legislation for insurance reform so states can work together to create a U.S.- Mexico binational health insurance program. Currently, each state regulates its health insurance products. The forum included representatives from the insurance industry, the Mexican governments, doctors and the U.S. border states.

Dr. Rios said new legislation at the federal level would allow states to work together to offer multistate insurance products.

The conference will include presentations on such regional and national issues as:

— “Future Vision for Quality-Care Lessons From Los Angeles Leaders.”

— “The Medical Profession and Hispanic Health.”

— “Leadership for the World’s Health: The Futures Initiative.”

— “Medical Education: Cultural Competence & Innovative Medical Curriculum Strategies.”

— “Federal Leadership and the Hispanic Health Agenda.”

Established in 1994 in Washington, DC, NHMA represents licensed Hispanic physicians in the United States. Its mission is to improve health care for Hispanics and the underserved. NHMA is located on the Web at nhmamd.org.

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CONTACT:

Castaneda Global Communications

Office: 703-369-0414

National Hispanic Medical Association to Discuss Ways to Offer Health Insurance to Families, Workers Across U.S.-Mexico Border