“Hispanics are disproportionately burdened by the COVID pandemic. Latinos have the highest case rates when compared to other racial-ethnic minority groups.“

Julio Dicent Taillepierre, MA, MS,
Team Lead, Initiatives and Partnerships, OMHHE.
CDC, Office of Minority Health and Health Equity

“Hispanics are disproportionately burdened by the COVID pandemic. Latinos have the highest case rates when compared to other racial-ethnic minority groups.”

Julio Dicent Taillepierre, MA, MS, on Latino Health Equity: Efforts and Impact

Summary:

“Health inequity is a health difference or disparity that is systematic, unfair, and avoidable. “


Latino Health Equity: Efforts and Impact, discusses key terms and statistics related to the Latino health disparity, CDC’s efforts and collaborative projects to advance greater health equity for Latinos, and the said effort’s focus and impact on the Latino community.


The objectives were being realized through the CDC’s funding and partnership of Hispanic-serving organizations like Alianza Americas Inc., PROCEED Inc., APHA Latinx COVID Task Force, and other initiatives centered on anti-stigma, appropriate engagement, and language accessibility.


Speaker Julio Dicent Taillepierre is the Team Leader for the Initiatives and Partnerships Team, in the Minority Health and Health Equity Unit of the CDC Office


of Minority Health and Health Equity. His roles are mostly centered on technical leadership and overseeing agency-wide initiatives related to the health of at-risk populations.

We have 700,000 Americans who have lost their lives in part because of the SARS-2 Coronavirus but in equal measure, defiance because of the anti-science aggression.”

Peter Hotez, MD, PhD,
Dean for the National School of Tropical Medicine,
Baylor College of Medicine

“We have 700,000 Americans who have lost their lives in part because of the SARS-2 Coronavirus but in equal measure, defiance because of the anti-science aggression.”

– Peter Hotez, MD, PhD, on COVID19 Vaccines: Science vs Anti-science

Summary:

“We have 700,000 Americans who have lost their lives in part because of the SARS-2 Coronavirus but in equal measure, defiance because of the anti-science aggression.” 

Peter Hotez, MD, PhD, on COVID19 Vaccines: Science vs Antiscience 


COVID19 Vaccines: Science vs Antiscience, discusses the progress of the US vaccination program, how vaccines are advanced globally, the latest options for accelerated low-cost vaccines for COVID-19, and the impact of the rising antivaccine global movement.


The objectives were realized through discussion on various global health and neglected disease vaccines, history and numbers relating to pandemic deaths, brief explanations on the evolution of COVID-19 and its vaccines, reasons causing a multitude of unvaccinated populations, and the serious prevailing danger of the anti-science and antivaccine movement and ideology.


Speaker Peter J. Hotez is Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine and Professor of Pediatrics and Molecular Virology & Microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine where he is also the Co-director of the Texas Children’s Center for Vaccine Development (CVD) and Texas Children’s Hospital Endowed Chair of Tropical Pediatrics. His roles are mostly centered on scholarly pursuits and researches.

“Reality is, vaccines, vaccinations make a difference. Covid has actually taken a heavy toll on our Houston’s Hispanic community. Hispanics account for 51% of more than the 3,100 deaths in Houston.”

Stephen L. Williams, MEd, MPA,
Director, Houston Health Department

“Reality is, vaccine, vaccinations make a difference. COVID has actually taken a heavy toll on our Houston’s Hispanic community. Hispanics account for 51% of more than the 3,100 deaths in Houston.”

Stephen L. Williams, MEd, MPA, on Innovative Efforts to Reach Latino and Other Minority Populations in Houston.

Summary:

“Certain determinants of health place Hispanic population at greater risk for poor health outcomes during the pandemic. Including a lower-medium household income compared to other groups.” 

Innovative Efforts to Reach Latino and Other Minority Populations in Houston, discusses the initiatives employed by the Houston health department to reach out and instill practices and behaviors known to reduce the spread of COVID in vulnerable populations including Hispanic communities.

The objectives were realized through discussion on their access and equity strategy named Todos Juntos. Major or simply, “Better together”. The strategy includes enforcing national health protocols, dispelling myths on the vaccine, utilizing broad communication and messaging platforms including Spanish media, door-to-door canvassing for vaccination, and giving access to various vaccination sites.

Speaker Stephen L. Williams serves as the Director for the Houston Health Department (HHD), a full-service public health department with 1300+ employees serving the 2.3 million residents of Houston while also overseeing a $166 million budget. He is primarily involved in public health issues at both local, and national levels. Stephen also serves on other important committees including COVID-19 Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel (EVAP).

“Writing and expressing myself on paper allowed me to face the difficulties that I was going through, that I continued to face as someone who is chronically ill.”

Jasminne Mendez
Creative Designer & Curriculum Writer, HSIEI

“Writing and expressing myself on paper allowed me to face the difficulties that I was going through, that I continued to face as someone who is chronically ill.”

Jasminne Mendez on The Lived Experience: Courage in Creativity.

Summary:

“It’s not that my positive thinking is going to cure my disease, but it is, at times, if I do it in a way that works for me, going to reduce my stress.” 

The Lived Experience: Courage in Creativity, discusses how art and creativity emotionally impact chronic illness and disability in the body, the connection of emotional health to physical health, how these diseases affect daily living, and ways to cope with said illnesses.

The objectives were realized through discussion on the definition and statistics of various chronic illnesses that affect women of color, the connection of the body and mind, the strategic tools one can employ for coping, and creative expressions of literature and art that reflect the relationship of the mind and body to the chronic illnesses.

Speaker Jasminne Mendez is a Dominican-American poet, playwright, award-winning author, and podcast host. She is the author of two literature collections, namely, Island of Dreams and Night-Blooming Jasmin(n)e: Personal Essays and Poetry. She also serves as the Co-Founder and Program Director of the Houston-based Latinx literary arts organization Tintero Projects and co-host of the poetry and writing podcast series InkWell, a collaboration between Tintero Projects and Inprint Houston.     

“We need new conceptual frameworks, we need to be more inclusive, not just because it is the right thing to do, but because it is the only way we will advance as a society to bring health equity for all.”

Jane Delgado, PhD
President and Chief Executive Officer, National Alliance for Hispanic Health

“We need new conceptual frameworks, we need to be more inclusive, not just because it is the right thing to do, but because it is the only way we will advance as a society to bring health equity for all.”

Jane Delgado, PhD on Mobilizing Communities to Advance Health Equity

Summary:

“The most important objective is to have you think deeply about who you are, who we are, and how to move forward as we try to improve health for all.” 

Mobilizing Communities to Advance Health Equity, discusses the conceptual frameworks that aids in examining cultural themes, the multiple barriers that affect Latino health equity, and the solutions to move past these barriers and advance health equity.

The objectives were realized through discussion on the structure and initiatives of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health as an organization, current conceptual frameworks related to women, ethnicity, and associated illnesses, science and statistics that seeds advance for health equity, and the need to overcome barriers through eliminating bias, gathering accurate data, and forming new conceptual frameworks.

Speaker Jane L. Delgado is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, also known as “The Alliance”. An award-winning organization famed as Best of the CFC charity by the Combined Federal Campaign and Best in America Seal by the Independent Charities of America. She also serves on the Board of Governors for Argonne National Labs, Board of the Lovelace Biomedical Research Institute, the U.S. Soccer Foundation, and many more others.

Among her many stellar national achievements and positions, she is internationally renowned as a pillar of innovation and action in her leadership efforts in transforming health for all.

“Hispanics are disproportionately burdened by the COVID pandemic. Latinos have the highest case rates when compared to other racial-ethnic minority groups.“ 

Rep. Sylvia Garcia
Member of Congress, TX-29. 
Includes Houston, Galena Park, Jacinto City, South Houston & Pasadena.

Acknowledgments and Closing Remarks: 

“Hello, this is Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia representing Texas 29th district here in the Houston region. I want to thank the Hispanic health coalition for inviting me and bringing together this excellent group of experts on issues that matter most, to Latinos of Houston. 

Health is a critical issue for our community. Especially after the disproportionate effects of (the) pandemic have on Latinos. In fact, as many of you already know, the Covid-19 pandemic decimated Hispanic communities in greater numbers than any other group in the United States. In total, Hispanic communities accounted for almost one-half of the Texas loss to Covid. 

There are Hispanic moms, dads, in their 30s 40s 50s, and 60s who are lost to this horrible disease. This is unacceptable and unconscionable. 

Back in May Dr. Hotez and I wrote an op-ed published in Houston chronicle, sounding the alarm on this terrible loss. We need to do better as Texans and as a community. Preserving the health of millions of Texans and Latinos is not a political issue. It is a moral duty. Yet, we have been inundated by misinformation spread by public officials who are more concerned about their political gains than prioritizing public health. 

The pandemic has wreaked havoc and hurt the chances for Latino communities to build health equity. It has hurt the chances for Latino mothers and fathers, children, and grandparents to build a healthy life, key for our community to thrive. 

This is why I’m grateful for spaces like this one which discusses not only the issues but also formulates solutions. With a solution-oriented approach, we have achieved a rate of 73% of Hispanic Americans fully vaccinated this is a higher percent than any other achieved in other communities. 

And this is why the work that you do is so important. Because our community is only better or has a better chance to thrive if we have professionals like you who understand our communities. Professionals who try their best and really care and act what our community is facing. 

We are extremely lucky to have you and we need to continue working together to make sure that our communities stay safe. With your tireless work, we are making sure we are honoring those we lost and that the next generation can prosper. 

I am encouraged by the efforts done by the community. And I am hopeful that we can beat this pandemic. I am hopeful that the lessons learned from covid-19 will allow our communities to build toward better health equity. 

Thank you Hispanic Health Coalition and thank you to all the panelists and experts who have participated today. 

Let’s continue the good work. Si, se puede. Thank you and God bless.”