UNT Health Science Center hosts conference, explores inequality in Healthcare

May 21, 2007

In its ongoing quest to solve the differences in disease prevalence between ethnic groups as well as their access to care, the Texas Center for Health Disparities (TCHD) at the University of North Texas Health Science Center will host a conference on  Health Disparities to Health Equities: Pathways to Solutions at its campus in Fort Worthâ??s Cultural District May 31-June 2.  The community, as well as local health and other professionals, is invited to attend. 

The Second Annual Conference organized by the TCHD and the UNT Health Science Center will kick off on May 31 when Keynote Speaker Barbara Ross-Lee, DO, FACOFP, will address â??The Health Vulnerable, Getting to Higher Ground.â?Â  Dr. Lee is vice president for Health Sciences and Medical Affairs at New York Institute of Technology and Dean of the School of Allied Health and Life Sciences.

This conference will feature nationally recognized speakers and experts in  health disparities to highlight the striking differences in health status among racial and ethnic minorities and the general population in Texas and the U.S. The conference also will highlight ongoing research programs and efforts that target underlying causes of these disparities and focus on devising innovative strategies to eliminate them.

Speakers, including Dr. Leobardo Estrada, Board of Directors for the American Association for Retired Persons (AARP) and Professor at the University of California-Los Angeles, will address issues involving cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, poor pregnancy outcomes, infant mortality and stroke. Educational and interactive presentations, panel discussions and question-and-answer sessions will identify the challenges and bring conference attendees closer to developing solutions for the future.   Fort Worth Mayor Pro-Tem Kathryn Hicks will speak on Friday afternoon.

Published reports on health disparities in Texas have shown striking disparities in health status, access to health care and risk factors among racial and ethnic minorities and the general population in Texas. Through its research, the TCHD at the UNT Health Science Center at Fort Worth is working to understand and reduce the cost of health care for people who are disadvantaged based on economic, social or ethnic bases.  In 2005, the National Center of Minority Health awarded the TCHD a five-year grant to establish an Excellence in Partnerships for Community Outreach and Research and Disparities in Health and Training (EXPORT) Center.

For more information about the conference including credits for physicians, nurses and social workers; registration; and parking, visit the UNT Health Science Center Health Disparities Conference site.

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