264040 Latino Nutrition, Health and Chronic Disease Prevention: Institutionalizing Latino-specific cultural competency through university-based curriculum development

Monday, October 29, 2012 : 1:08 PM - 1:20 PM

Mayra Rascon, MPH , NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation and Leadership Training, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, CA
Britt Rios-Ellis, PhD, MS , NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, CA
Gail C. Frank, DrPH, RD, CHES , Family and Consumer Sciences Department, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, CA
Melawhy Garcia-Vega, MPH , NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation and Leadership Training, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, CA
Background: As the largest minority group in the US, Latinos face an increasingly high risk of obesity, overweight and nutritionally-related diseases. Furthermore, the high fertility and youth of Latinos render the training of healthcare professionals imperative to address Latino-specific health disparities. Development of a culturally competent curriculum focusing on Latinos is essential within the field of health and human services at the university level, particularly at a Hispanic Serving Institution.

Methods: The Latino Nutrition, Health and Chronic Disease Prevention course was developed, approved, and offered as an upper-division, 3-unit course at California State University, Long Beach. Topics included: Latino health profile; cultural similarities and differences between Latino subpopulations; the diversity of diet across the Latino diaspora; chronic disease risk and nutrition as prevention; and programs impacting Latino nutrition and health. Furthermore, the course curriculum emphasizes the use of community-based participatory research methods and student experiential learning to design interventions that create positive behavioral change within Latino populations. This presentation will provide an overview of course development, content, and discuss steps for the successful integration of community health-related diversity within the curricular fabric at the university level.

Results: Twelve undergraduate students from multiple disciplines enrolled in the pilot course. Successful completion and evaluation collected from the students supported the permanent institutionalization of the course.

Conclusion: Further efforts are being made to develop additional courses and create a Latino Health and Nutrition Studies certificate, which will provide health and human services students with a thorough background on chronic disease prevention among Latinos.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the key components necessary to develop a Latino-focused culturally competent curriculum for health and human service professionals. 2. Describe the linkage of curriculum to prevent Latino nutrition-related chronic diseases within the context of Hispanic Serving Universities. 3. Discuss effective strategies for the institutionalization of Latino-specific cultural competency through curriculum development at the university level.

Keywords: Cultural Competency, Curricula

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I assisted in the development of the course curriculum and I serve as the course instructor.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.