U.S. Hispanics Focus of Free Cholesterol Checks

Up to half have not been screened in the last 5 years, group says

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SUNDAY, Aug. 12, 2007 (HealthDay News) -- Free cholesterol screenings and heart health education sessions are part of the national 2007 Summer Heart Health Campaign, launched this month by the National Alliance for Hispanic Health.

While it's a national campaign, it will focus on four major cities: Chicago, Miami, New York and Houston.

"We're bringing free cholesterol screenings to these communities so we can provide people with access to information critical to leading a healthy life," Dr. Jane L. Delgado, president and CEO of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, said in a prepared statement.

"Both locally, and nationally, this summer's heart health campaign can help achieve an immediate increase in cholesterol screening rates and awareness, and that's an achievement that can save lives," she said.

The Alliance said that U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studies found that, among racial/ethnic groups in the United States, Hispanics were least likely to have been screened for high cholesterol within the previous five years. The studies found that between one-third and one-half of Hispanics had not been screened.

As part of the campaign, the Alliance will also conduct a survey on Hispanic health issues. The results will be released in November at a meeting of leaders in Hispanic cardiology.

"The more we can understand the health challenges Hispanic communities face, the better equipped our doctors and other professionals in the health care system will be to provide appropriate care and advice to our patients," Dr. Jack Lewin, CEO of the American College of Cardiology, said in a prepared statement.

More information

You can find out more about the cholesterol screenings by going to the National Alliance for Hispanic Health Web site.

SOURCE: National Alliance for Hispanic Health, news release, Aug. 1, 2007

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