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Student LULAC Group Serves Latino Community

March 16, 2018 | The UAMS branch of the League of United Latin American Citizens isn’t wasting time making a difference.

The student-run group, founded in November by Santiago and Basilia Gonzalez (both second year medical students) has already recruited over 30 members from all ethnic backgrounds belonging to the Colleges of Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing, and Health Professions.

The group held its first health fair February 25 at St. Edward’s Church in Little Rock. The fair, co-sponsored by the UAMS Center for Diversity Affairs, treated more than 150 members of the Latino community.

Along with its faculty advisors, the group checked BMI, blood pressure, glucose and cholesterol, and provided pamphlets corresponding to specific health conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, as well as information on affordable clinics in the area so that participants could have access to continuing healthcare.

Advisors for UAMS LULAC include Billy Thomas, M.D., M.P.H., vice chancellor for diversity and inclusion and director of the Center for Diversity Affairs; Sara Tariq, M.D., professor and assistant dean for clinical education in the UAMS College of Medicine; and Cesar Compadre, PhD., professor and director of the UAMS Biomedical Visualization Center in the UAMS College of Pharmacy. CDA staff members Kimberlyn Blann and Nicholas Pettus were supportive in the development of the organization and the event.

“There were more than 20 cases of undiagnosed high blood pressure seen in both kids and adults, as well as five patients with high glucose levels, all of whom were not aware they had health issues,” said Santiago Gonzalez, founding president of UAMS LULAC.

“We were able to make a difference in the health care of more than 150 Hispanic and Latino patients,” said Gonzalez. “We aim to reach more people.”

UAMS LULAC plans to host another health fair in June.