The American Heart Association (AHA) formed the National Hispanic Latino Cardiovascular Collaborative to expand Latino representation in health care and in turn help improve the quality of care for Latino heart patients.

A research study conducted by Penn State University found that patients prefer their doctors to be of the same race and ethnicity. Although about 19% of people in the United States identify as Latino, less than 7% of physicians do. This lack of representation fuels health disparities and barriers that impact the quality of care for Latinos.

The collaborative will fight for Latino representation in clinical, research and public health communities not only to create a more equitable health care system but also to empower the next generation of Latino health professionals through mentorship and networking with members.

With a specific focus on the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular disease and stroke, the collaborative hopes to advance Latino cardiovascular health while supporting and advancing Latino cardiovascular professional development.

The collaborative will advise the AHA and help the organization achieve its 2024 goal to provide cardiovascular health equity for all.

“As the American Heart Association strives for health equity in cardiovascular health, we are excited to support the National Hispanic Latino Cardiovascular Collaborative to uplift the voices and experiences of these communities in an effort to improve health and well-being,” said Eduardo Sanchez, MD, MPH, FAHA, the American Heart Association’s chief medical officer for prevention and the executive sponsor of the National Hispanic Latino Cardiovascular Collaborative, in an AHA news release.

To learn more about cardiovascular health, click #Cardiovascular. There you’ll find headlines such as “Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Cardiovascular Death Among Cancer Survivors,” “Study Challenges Belief That Latinos Have Better Health Outcomes,” and “Stroke, Heart Failure Death Rates Accelerating in Some Latino Adults.”