Centro Hispano de East Tennessee

Centro Hispano’s Latino Promotora Program

Latino immigrants are underserved by the healthcare system because of factors such as poverty, lack of insurance, and language, educational, and cultural barriers. These barriers to access to healthcare are more prevalent among Latino adults than children. This project will focus on helping Latino immigrants to obtain preventative health education and empower them to take responsibility for and control of their healthcare needs. A trial investigation during Phase I will clarify strategies and techniques, but our initial plan is to concentrate on prevention/early detection of cervical and breast cancer and adult vaccinations. We concentrate on preventative health care among women and vaccinations because resources are available, men are more difficult to reach with health care messages, and this focus will result in greater impact per dollar spent.

Centro’s program proposes the use of Spanish-speaking promotores (lay public health workers) to educate members of the Latino immigrant community about health issues and how low-income families can obtain healthcare in Knoxville. We have already identified several potential promotores from our community who have experience as healthcare providers in their countries of origin. The proposed Phase II program would include two promotores who will spend 15 hours per week with clients, a program coordinator who will spend 12 hours per week coordinating with healthcare providers, managing the promotores, planning outreach and, with the help of a 10-hour-per-week clerical assistant, arranging community outreach, publicity, appointments, and transportation.