Marilyn Brusherd from the Department of Human & Health Services (Office of Civil Rights, Chicago) discussed a patient’s rights to bilingual services from health care providers. Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 states any person with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) has the right to obtain bilingual healthcare. Every healthcare provider that receives federal financial assistance is required by law to accommodate LEP patients by hiring bilingual staff or interpreters.
Lydia Alejandro, cofounder of the Ohio Latino Health Coalition (OLHC), explained that was surprised to learn the laws apply to private healthcare providers as well. OLHC was formed in 1999 to address the health disparities affecting the Latino communities in Ohio. It strives to identify barriers to health care, strategize plans and implement health projects to improve the health of Latinos. [For more information about Title VI visit the Office of Civil Rights (ORC) web site: http://www.hhs.gov/ocr]
The workshop also included presentation by Team Cleveland, an initiative team of Souder, Betances & Associates Inc., a Chicago based diversity consultation group funded by the Cleveland Foundation to assess the needs of the Cleveland Latino community.
“Getting it right: A framework for Hispanic coalition-building in Cleveland, Assessment Report” offers a snapshot of perceptions within the Latino and greater community of Cleveland and provides a framework of action plans.
The results are not surprising and inline with the national perceptions and problems says Dr. Laura Souder, C.E.O. / President of Souder, Betances and Associates Inc.
To request a complete copy of the report, e-mail your request to Lourdes Negron-McDaniel at: [email protected].
As part of Convención Hispana 2007 on Oct. 13, health workshops were presented, including topics dealing with diabetes (presented by Dr. Leonore Osorio), mental health (presented by Dr. Erendira López-García), and health care costs (presented by Cathy Levine).