Conference to Address Latino Health Needs

By for CAES News
"In the past decade the Latino population in Georgia has grown 300 percent, from 109,000 in 1990 to 435,000 in 2000," said Rebecca Mullis, chair of the foods and nutrition department in the UGA College of Family and Consumer Sciences.

"These new residents have a range of health needs that include chronic diseases such as diabetes," Mullis said. "But coupled with these diseases are a lack of access to health care and cultural barriers that often discourage families from seeking help."

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The UGA conference is designed for anyone interested in improving the health of Latinos. The cost is $150 ($175 after June 28). Registration information is on the Web site for the Georgia Center for Continuing Education (search for "Latino health").

Among the many Latino health issues covered in the breakout sessions will be drug and alcohol abuse, children's health and how best to use Latino communications media to convey health messages and information.

"We hope those who attend will learn about the Latino culture, find new ways of communicating with the Latino community and be able to identify the components of an effective health program for Latinos," Mullis said.

The conference is being organized by CFACS, the UGA Vice President for Public Service and Outreach, the College of Education and DrTango, Inc., a company that develops and licenses Web-based, health- and diet-related applications and content in Spanish and Portuguese.

Funding is provided by Coca-Cola, Atlanta Gas Light, Gold Kist, the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Georgia Department of Human Resources.

For more information on the conference, call the Georgia Center at (706) 542-2134.

Denise Horton is a contracted writer for the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Office of Global Programs.