Conoce las preguntas ??

Please welcome Dr. Ponce-González, Agency for Healthcare and Research Quality (AHRQ) Scientific Review Officer, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services who explains the new “Conoce las Preguntas” (Know the Questions) campaign.
What are some of the reasons that AHRQ launched this campaign?
We need Latinos to engage with their doctors. Research shows that Hispanics tend to seek medical treatment advice from friends, co-workers, and even casual acquaintances rather than going to the doctor, unless they are very sick. Also, a variety of fears prevent Latinos from going to the doctor and asking questions: fear of the exam, fear of the diagnosis and fear of the unknown. The proportion of Hispanics who report having poor communication with their health providers is widening and the percentage who regularly get important screening tests to check for diabetes or cancer is not improving. In fact, according to AHRQ’s National Healthcare Disparities Report, 47% of adult Hispanics reported not having seen a doctor in 2008, compared to the 29% of adult non-Hispanics.
How has the use of social media influenced this current campaign? 
We know that U.S. Hispanics are huge users of smartphone technology and are avidly engaged in social media. Understanding that, AHRQ included a mobile program as part of the “Conoce las Preguntas” campaign. In just over a month, more than 2,300 people have opted-in and we are very happy with the success so far. Another goal was to talk to bloggers like you so that Latinos will be encouraged to engage with their doctors, especially if it comes from a familiar, trusted source. 
Why do you believe Latinos are more prone to asking for medical advice from their family or friends rather than going directly to a medical professional?
They often face challenges in getting access to health care services and have a higher rate of uninsurance. Language and cultural barriers also play an important role. The campaign message is so important because by getting a diagnosis from a doctor rather than guesses from co-workers, friends or family, you can ensure better health care and better health.
What key questions or tests should a woman in her 30s 40s and 50s ask for when visiting her medical doctor? Can AHRQ provide this answer?

AHRQ provides resources in both Spanish and English to help women determine which preventive medical tests they need and when they need to get them. Women: Stay Healthy at Any Age can be found on AHRQ’s web site  AHRQ – Healthy Womanor Mujer: Mantengase saludable a cualquier edad at AHRQ- Mujer: Manténgase Saludable.  AHRQ also features questions patients can bring to their medical appointments to help them get safer care at AHRQ – Questions are the answer. This list features questions that will help patients talk more easily to their doctor and that can also be customized. 

From the AHRQ website, here are 10 questions you should be asking your doctor or pharmacist on your next visit:
¿Va a visitar a su médico o farmacéutico? Estas 10 preguntas le ayudarán a preparse para la visita.

What is this exam for? (¿Para qué es el examen?)
How many times have you done this procedure? (¿Cuántas veces ha hecho este procedimiento?)
When will you have the results? (¿Cuándo obtendré los resultados?)
Why is this treatment necessary? (¿Por qué necesito este tratamiento?)
Do other alternatives exist? (¿Existen otras alternativas?)
What are the possible complications? (¿Cuáles son las posibles complicaciones?)
What hospital can best treat my condition? (¿Qué hospital puede tratar mejor mi condición?)
How do you spell the name of this medicine? (¿Cómo deletrea el nombre de ese medicamento?)
Will this medication cause side effects?  (¿El medicamento produce efectos secundarios?)
Can this medicine interact with the other medications I’m taking? (¿Es posible que este medicamento interactúe con los medicamentos que ya estoy tomando?)

For additional information in English and Spanish, be sure to visit their website at: www.ahrq.gov/preguntas

 Thank you for your dedication and service to the community 
Dr. Ponce-González!

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