Health Care Professionals Gather for the Second Annual Hispanic Transplant Symposium


By Britni Riley | September 28, 2017

The Second Annual Texas Medical Center Hispanic Transplant Symposium on Sept. 26 drew doctors, nurses, researchers, clinicians, dieticians, organ donation and transplantation professionals and patients to discuss the challenges facing the Hispanic population in the United States when it comes to receiving care for end-stage organ disease.

“Forty percent of people on the waiting list in Texas identify themselves as Hispanic,” said Mark Hobeika, M.D., a transplant surgeon at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and McGovern Medical School at UTHealth and the symposium chair and master of ceremonies. “We, as members of the organ donation and transplant community, should be at the forefront of providing culturally appropriate care for the Hispanic population.”

In addition to being genetically predisposed to developing end-stage renal disease, Hispanics also face other issues that keep them from receiving appropriate medical care, according to keynote speaker, Sylvia E. Rosas, M.D., a nephrologist and director of the Latino Kidney Clinic at Joslin Diabetes Center and Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital, and associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

“Minorities take longer, A) to be referred to a doctor and, B) to do the work-up,” Rosas said. “It could be they don’t have insurance. They may not have access to transportation, can’t take off work. They may not believe in getting a transplant.”

Rosas has worked closely with the Kidney Allocation System (KAS) to even out the playing field for minorities waiting on life-saving kidney transplants.

“Before KAS, the time on the waiting list was done after you were waitlisted for an organ,” Rosas said. “Now with KAS, the time that you are put on the list starts when you start dialysis,” Rosas said. “Traditionally, minorities took longer to get waitlisted. For example, it took them two or three years on dialysis plus the four or five years it takes to get an organ transplant versus whites who may have been listed even before they needed dialysis. The KAS system makes it so the start of dialysis is the start of the list for everyone now.”

But it is not just genetics and logistics that keep the Hispanic population from receiving the medical care they need. Many speakers at the symposium noted that organ donation and transplantation go against fundamental beliefs of some members of the community.

With the second-largest Hispanic population in the United States, Houston health care professionals agree that a culturally-sensitive approach to working with the Hispanic population will be essential in moving forward with lowering rates of end-stage organ disease.

“This gives those of us in the organ donation and transplantation community an opportunity to work on a huge problem that we have, which is to get more patients transplants within the Hispanic community,” said LifeGift president and CEO, Kevin Myer. “There are social, cultural, financial and access challenges and by having this symposium together, we can narrow those down. Hopefully, the sharing of knowledge will allow us to be more effective in increasing donation and transplantation within the Hispanic community in Houston and across the U.S.”




Social Posts

profile_image

MD Anderson Cancer Center

@MDAndersonNews

The three focus areas of our Prostate #CancerMoonshot: - overcoming treatment resistance - exploring #immunotherapy - understanding the tumor environment Learn more: https://t.co/0ZQCm8tMdR #PCSM #endcancer

10 hours ago
profile_image

Rice University

@RiceUniversity

The @GlasscockSchool's fall course catalog is chock-full of offerings for ever-curious learners, including classes in the humanities and sciences, foreign languages and personal and professional development. https://t.co/A793BrcLfz https://t.co/8a1K8LbHE2

10 hours ago
profile_image

Veterans Affairs

@DeptVetAffairs

Last Shasta County Navy Veteran who survived Pearl Harbor attack laid to rest https://t.co/lc5ODzbk9l via @JimSchultz_RS

11 hours ago
profile_image

BCMHouston

@bcmhouston

One internal medicine resident looks back at a time where a patient helped him realize the balance of overly identifying with patients and complete detachment. https://t.co/7xsFWEhVc4

11 hours ago
profile_image

Veterans Affairs

@DeptVetAffairs

Santa Clarita Air Force Veteran Launches Campaign For Web Series To Depict Modern Soldier Life https://t.co/Td0ds3jxue via @KHTSRADIO

12 hours ago
profile_image

Veterans Affairs

@DeptVetAffairs

Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is @USArmy Veteran Stanley Nelson. https://t.co/SHml8yEysj

12 hours ago
profile_image

UTHealth

@UTHealth

Thank you @MBThewoodlands for supporting student scholarships at @MDA_UTHGrad! It also is hosting our next House Calls web chat on sports medicine this Thursday, July 19, at 6:30 p.m. CST at https://t.co/N5UU1Jx4pq. Submit a question for our experts by using #UTHealthHouseCalls.

12 hours ago
profile_image

UTHealth

@UTHealth

RT @abc13houston: The most common sports injuries are strains and sprains, but do you know when you might need to see a doctor? The experts…

12 hours ago
profile_image

BCMHouston

@bcmhouston

RT @BCMHouston_News: Tune in to @FOX26Houston tomorrow in the 8 am hour to hear @bcmhouston's Dr. El-Serag discuss the recent CDC report on…

13 hours ago
profile_image

MD Anderson Cancer Center

@MDAndersonNews

#Cancerpain can be related to the disease and treatment. Hear from Dr. Salahadin Abdi on how patients can find relief. #endcancer https://t.co/snFVjDUjNe

14 hours ago
profile_image

TexasHeartInstitute

@Texas_Heart

RT @HealthyWomen: 10 Sneaky Ways to Get Fruits and Veggies in Your #Diet: https://t.co/wJ9x39147k #health https://t.co/EWktCmct2J

14 hours ago
profile_image

BCMHouston

@bcmhouston

RT @BCMHouston_News: Certain nail products can cause allergic reactions or irritations. @bcmhouston's Dr. Katta shares what to look out for…

14 hours ago
profile_image

MD Anderson Cancer Center

@MDAndersonNews

@ParrotsMatter @TargetedOnc @michaelwangmd Hi, yes we are. Here's a list of current clinical trials: https://t.co/JgHpaIKBbX. Best wishes to you.

14 hours ago
profile_image

Rice University

@RiceUniversity

RT @RiceAthletics: To celebrate #WorldEmojiDay, check out our favorite mascot @SammyTheOwl! 🦉👐 https://t.co/ebIKcsu2Z9

15 hours ago
profile_image

UTHealth

@UTHealth

RT @abc13houston: A workout injury can happen to anyone, no matter your experience or fitness level. Learn about treatment options and how…

15 hours ago