CALL FOR ABSTRACTS — APHA 2021 Annual Meeting and Expo

Latino Caucus

Meeting theme: "Creating the Healthiest Nation: Strengthening Social Connectedness"

Submission Deadline: Sunday, March 21, 2021

The Latino Caucus invites the submission of abstracts describing original research and practice with the Latina/o/x community for dissemination at the APHA 2021 Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado. The theme, “Creating the Healthiest Nation: Strengthening Social Connectedness,” presents an opportunity to disseminate the unique challenges, opportunities and best practices to promote social connectedness and advance public health in Latinx communities. 

The World Health Organization considers social support networks as an important health determinant. Having high-quality close relationships and feeling socially connected to the others is associated with decreased risk for all-cause mortality and many disease morbidities. Social connectedness has been found to be beneficial for moderating the negative health effects of social inequities. Cultural constructs and processes such as familism, machismo, marianismo, religiosity, and acculturation and assimilation, have been examined in relation to Latinx health in order to assess how social connections to the family, community, and the larger society hurt or help their health behaviors, mental health, and chronic disease risk. However, there have been several critiques and expansions of these constructs for approaching the Latinx community as a monolith and for failing to integrate the political, economic, and the transnational processes that shape the conditions for social integration in all levels of the social ecology. 

The conditions that produce low social connectedness, or social isolation, in Latinx communities result from the lack of health equity. Health equity, defined as the "attainment of the highest level of health for all people” (Healthy People 2030), continues to be a core theme of the Latinx Caucus. We believe that everyone deserves a fair chance to lead a healthy life, and that no one should be denied this chance because of who they are, what they look like, where they come from, or their socioeconomic and political situation. Therefore, in addition to this year's theme, we will review abstracts that feature research and practice that advance Latinx health equity.

We welcome scientific abstracts that address complex questions about the intersections of prevention and equity, policy and advocacy, community assets and resources produced in Latinx communities to address social inequalities (including gender, geography, racism and ethnic discrimination, sexuality) that produce social isolation and impact health across the lifespan (e.g., children, adolescents, mid-life and older adults). Social relationships can be examined as either a health determinant or a risk factor. We are looking for novel approaches that promote social connectedness, provide long-term responses to social isolation (e.g., improving public infrastructure and the built environment), and promote wellness through science and action.

We are interested in highlighting research that address: social support; social and cultural capital; social inclusion/exclusion resulting from policy-making or institutional neglect; loneliness and social isolation resulting from various social conditions, including the digital divide, physical infrastructure and built environment; the importance of lower-status health workers (i.e., community health workers, promotoras/es, personal and home health aides, CNAs) to promote health; cultural analyses of social connectedness in relation to Latinx health throughout the lifecourse; and biopsychosocial responses to social connections or social isolation and health.

  • Chronic Disease Prevention Research and Interventions
  • Honoring the Work and Legacy of Edna Viruell-Fuentes
  • Improving the Built Environment to Promote Social Connectedness and Latinx Health
  • Latinx Young Professionals and Students
  • Loneliness and Social Isolation Resulting from the Digital Divide
  • New and Emerging Issues in Latina/o/x Health
  • Social Connectedness or Social Isolation Resulting from Institutional Practices or Policy-Making
  • Social Exclusion of Migrants and Family Separation at the U.S.-Mexico Border
  • The Importance of Community Health Workers to Promote Latinx Health

The abstracts will be organized into one of the following sessions: oral presentation, roundtable discussion, or poster session. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 Annual Meeting will be a hybrid meeting, with some of our presentations taking place in a virtual platform, while others will be in-person. At a later date, once abstracts are accepted, we will inquire the presenters’ preference for an in-person or virtual presentation. 

We encourage new and established scholars and practitioners to submit their abstracts. We strongly encourage students to submit their abstracts, and to indicate their student status in the appropriate checkbox in order to be considered for the Outstanding Student Paper, which is recognized at the Latino Caucus Annual Awards Program.

Please note that all abstracts are peer-reviewed and evaluated using the following criteria:

  • Clarity of presentation: statement of problem, relevance, methods, results, and conclusions
  • Quality and completeness of reported findings
  • Originality and implications of findings to research, practice, and/or policy
  • Overall impact on Latinx communities

Continuing Education Credit

APHA values the ability to provide continuing education credit to physicians, nurses, health educators and those certified in public health at its annual meeting. Please complete all required information when submitting an abstract so members can claim credit for attending your session:

1) Abstract must be free of trade and/or commercial product names;

2) Abstract must have at least one MEASURABLE objective (DO NOT USE “understand” or “to learn” as objectives as they are not measurable. Examples of acceptable measurable action words include: explain, demonstrate, analyze, formulate, discuss, compare, differentiate, describe, name, assess, evaluate, identify, design, define or list);

3) You must sign the Conflict of Interest (Disclosure) form with a relevant Qualification Statement. See an example of an acceptable Qualification Statement on the online Disclosure form.


Program Planner Contact Information:

Airin Martinez


Barbara Baquero