February 15, 2010

diabetes among Latinos

Hi all! Emily here again. I just got back from the Imlay City Migrant Clinic, where today we talked a lot about diabetes among Latinos in the United States. The director of the clinic told me that 1 in 10 Latinos in the United States has diabetes! Today I brought some bilingual literature to pass out to our migrant worker patients about this extremely serious disease.
Something I love about the Imlay clinic is that in addition to having bilingual staff and Spanish-language health literature, there are more Latino staffmembers than non-Latinos working here. Cultural understanding is so important to providing quality care to our migrant worker patients. Dr. Carter, seated in the photograph below, is the sole physician at the Imlay Clinic. She is a gringa like myself and has never lived in Latin America, but she speaks a whole lot of Spanish just having learned it from her patients. I have learned plenty of vocab from her as well!
Standing behind Dr. Carter in this photo are Esther and Kay, the office translator and one of our nurses respectively. Everybody here is so kind--I feel very lucky to work with them.

The worst part about working at a migrant clinic is not being able to afford to treat the patients as we know they should be. We had a woman tonight who needs $75 compression stockings and a sleep study and CPAP machine, and she can't afford any of those. Someone else needed physical therapy for tendinitis, but she can't afford that either. How lucky those of us are who have health insurance, and how sad and unfair for the people who do not!


Anonymous said...

maybe you can negotiate with the comp hose people for a couple pair?

MSU CHM Saginaw said...

Nice pictures. Thank you so much for your update Emily.

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