October 2015

The National Hispanic Medical Association (NHMA) is proud to support National Substance Abuse Prevention Month, October 2015. During this month, NHMA will participate in a number of activities that highlight the serious physical and mental health effects of substance abuse. 

The National Hispanic Medical Association statement on Hispanics and addictions:

NHMA acknowledges the ravaging effects of alcohol, tobacco and drugs within Hispanic and other underserved communities and supports raising awareness among all health care providers about prevention, early detection, comorbidities, treatments, services and recovery.

In an effort to eliminate health and behavioral health disparities,  NHMA promotes building a diverse and cultural and linguistically competent provider workforce, a no wrong door policy and treatment vs criminalization, while removing barriers to quality care such as long waiting lists, lack of insurance and prohibitive costs of care.


For information on drug facts for Latinos:

Substance Abuse And Mental Health Services Administration: http://www.samhsa.gov/


For information about Unite to Face Addiction:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




December 2013

NHMA urges our members and networks to share the great opportunity to sign-up for Health Insurance through the Marketplace at Healthcare.gov or certain State Marketplaces.  NHMA especially encourages providers and others to discuss the need for affordable health insurance that covers prevention, health care, mental health care, and more essential health services. For more information go to Healthcare.gov.

In January 2014, the Spanish website counterpart to Healthcare.gov: Cuidadodesalud.gov will be marketed and NHMA urges all to let their LEP patients know the importance of signing up for health insurance.


Dr. Elena Rios has written several letters to government officials. Below you can read through the most current letter written and also see past letters.

Current Letter:

Join NHMA to Advocate to Improve the Health of the Hispanic Community

NHMA Supports Healthcare Reform

March 17, 2010

President Obama
The White House

Speaker Nancy Pelosi
U.S. House of Representatives

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
U.S. Senate

Dear President Obama, Speaker Pelosi, and Senator Reid:

On behalf of the National Hispanic Medical Association (NHMA), we strongly support health care reform legislation because we believe it will address many of our long-standing policy priorities to improve the health status for Hispanics and other underserved.

The NHMA convened its “National Hispanic and Health Disparities Leadership Summit Series” with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and 300 stakeholders in California, New York and Texas in 2008. We presented the consensus priorities for three priority areas - Access to Health Care, Prevention of Obesity and Diabetes, and Diversity in the HealthCare Professions - to Senator Kennedy’s initial health care reform meetings in August 2008, to the Senate and Congressional leaders, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the Congressional Black Caucus and the Congressional Asian Pacific Islander Caucus, and to the Obama White House staff.

We strongly support health care reform with affordable universal insurance coverage that is paid for with a shared responsibility approach and incentives for small business;

We strongly support the transformation of a health system that centers on community prevention, public health and integrative care with a national strategy that includes the US DHHS Office of Minority Health leadership;

We strongly support the focus on the outreach and education to underserved and uninsured communities, especially Hispanics, the largest ethnic group in the nation and by the year 2042 will be one out of four Americans, with culturally and linguistically appropriate services;

We strongly support the development of a more robust primary care and public health workforce with diversity programs to recruit Hispanic students and faculty, Hispanic health professional leadership programs, and cultural competence and health care workforce training programs ---to all health care students and providers;

We strongly support the health team approach and patient centered care and improved quality care for racial/ethnic populations in our urban and rural communities and along the U.S.-Mexico border and in the territories;

We strongly support a more efficient system, including data collection, comparative effectiveness research, health IT, quality measures, guidelines that include racial/ethnic and primary language indicators and a Hispanic population focus;

We strongly support appointing Hispanics to the leadership of the Federal government agencies impacting health care, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and other health related agencies.

In summary, the National Hispanic Medical Association strongly supports health care reform legislation because we believe it will improve the health status for Hispanics and all Americans.
We are urging all national Hispanic health professional associations, the Hispanic medical societies, and their members to support health care reform.


Elena Rios, MD, MSPH
President & CEO, NHMA

Cc: Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez
Congresswoman Lucille Roybal Allard
Congressman Xavier Becerra
Congressman Charles Gonzalez
Congressman Raul Grijalva
Congresswoman Donna Christensen
Congressman Mike Honda
Congressman Henry Waxman
Congressman Dennis Miller
Congressman Charles Rangel
Congressman Pete Stark
Senator Tom Harkin
Senator Max Baucus
Senator Robert Menendez
Senator Christopher Dodd
Senator Jeff Bingaman
Senator Barbara Mikulski
All other Congressmen and Senators

Past Letters

NHMA Supports Healthcare Reform--May 21, 2010

Dr. Interviewed by Washington Post in Healthcare, Immigration Debate--November 13, 2009

OMH and NHMA Report on Health Disparities and Hispanic Leadership Summit--August 12, 2009

Federal Coordinating Committee on Comparative Effectiveness Research Listening Session, Comment from NHMA-- April 14, 2009

NHMA Community Discussion on Health Reform
--May 28, 2009

Hispanic & Health Disparities Summit Series Recommendation Power Point--2008

Federal Health Policy-- 2008

Letter to House on SCHIP Reauthorization--January 13, 2009

Letter to House to Support Medicare Prescription Drug Negotiations Act of 2007 H.R.4
--February 8, 2007

Cultural Competence: A Critical Component to Address Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities for Women--July 1, 2005

NHMA Opposes Section 1011 of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, PL 108-173: Federal Reimbursement of Emergency Health Services Furnished to Undocumented Aliens--August 1, 2004

NHMA Support the Healthcare Equality and Accountability Act--March 1, 2004

NHMA Support the Healthcare Equality and Accountability Act--March 1, 2004

NHMA Supports Closing the Healthcare Gap Act- S.2091--March 1, 2004

Comments on NIH Strategic Research Plan and Budget to Reduce and Ultimately Eliminate Disparities in Health, 2002-2006
--January 1, 2004

Limited English Proficiency Guidance Comments--December 1, 2003

Opposition to Medicare Conference Agreement--November 1, 2003

Medicare Action Alert
--August 1, 2003

Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute--September 1, 2002

Hispanic Health Act Review--September 1, 2002

Letter to Congressman, Budget for Centers of Excellence Program and other Health Professions
--September 1, 2001


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Phone: 202-628-5895
Fax: 202-628-5898
Email: nhma@nhmamd.org