Date of Graduation

Fall 12-13-2017

Document Type

Project/Capstone

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

College/School

School of Nursing and Health Professions

Abstract

This paper aims to examine obesity and diabetes among the Latino population as a health problem. As the largest minority racial group in the U.S, Latino rates of obesity and diabetes are greatly higher than whites. The prevalence of obesity in Latinos is 45% compared to that of whites at 34.5% (CDC, 2015). The disproportionate rates at which Latinos are affected by obesity and diabetes have prompted numerous programs to combat this health problem. Promotores or Latino community health workers have been able to provide the important piece of culturally and linguistically appropriate education for the population. Evidence shows Promotores dramatically improve intervention outcomes. Evidence also points to the cost effectiveness of using community health workers for a program related to lifestyle modification for Latinos with type 2 diabetes. The program was cost effective, yielding results of lower AIC levels by generous amounts (Brown et al., 2012). As a result, conducting my fieldwork at an agency that uses Promotores was key in order to examine the positive impact Promotores have on the local Latino community. The program evaluation consisted of forty-two client satisfaction surveys as well as four in-depth interviews with Promotores. Overall the results were positive, many clients indicated a better understanding of services available in their community and many continue to use those services after a year or more of being part of the program. The in-depth interviews also illustrated some of the challenges that come with being a Promotor/a but also indicated an overall high job satisfaction rate. These results illustrated the positive impact Promotores have on the Latino population however, it is evident more research is needed in this area. Specifically, more research can influence policy changes that can then yield more funding in addressing the barriers Latinos face when it comes to healthcare in the U.S.

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