Press Releases

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Cervical Cancer Prevention Month Sheds Light on Increased Risk Faced by Latinas, Highlights Importance of ACA Enrollment

Press Release
Washington
loretta Kane, Camino Public Relations Phone: 917.410.7242 Email: lk@caminopr.org

WASHINGTON, DC — January is Cervical Cancer Prevention Month. According to the latest study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), women of color have the highest cervical cancer incidence and mortality rates, with Latinas experiencing the highest incidence, and second highest mortality rate (after Black women) among all racial and ethnic groups. This is despite the fact that Latinas are screened for cervical cancer at a similar rate to white women.

In commemoration of Cervical Cancer Prevention Month, Jessica González-Rojas, executive director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) issued the following statement:

“This month, we reflect on the dangers cervical cancer poses for Latinas across the country. While there has been substantial progress over the past four decades, Latinas and all women of color continue to suffer the highest cervical cancer death rates, signaling a lack of adequate health systems in place to provide lifesaving care. Systemic barriers, such as cost, lack of culturally competent providers, language barriers and discriminatory immigration policies, are preventing Latinas from getting the care they need.

“These barriers not only diminish crucial access to healthcare but also discourage Latinas from seeking the necessary treatment after a screening. This month, as the 114th Congress begins its first session, my hope is to raise awareness and inspire leaders to reintroduce the Health Equity and Accountability Act (HEAA) to increase cultural competence and eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in accessing healthcare.

“This month is also a reminder of the lifesaving healthcare coverage opportunities provided by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the importance of getting covered. We are working hard in communities across the country to educate Latinas about the ACA and the February 15 enrollment deadline, and ensure that as many Latinas as possible are covered by the benefits of this landmark legislation.”

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The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health is the only national reproductive justice organization dedicated to building Latina power to advance health, dignity, and justice for 26 million Latinas, their families, and communities in the United States through leadership development, community mobilization, policy advocacy, and strategic communications.