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Minorities in health care wanted


By Ariel Serafin
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday, November 18, 2005
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Conference examines representation of minorities in health sciences field

Ethnic minorities are dramatically underrepresented in health care professions, which is the problem tomorrow's "Embracing Diversity in Health care," conference will address and attempt to help solve.

The conference targets students who are considering a career in medicine and will include an assortment of events like a health professions panel and a cultural competency workshop.

The annual conference is in its eighth year of circulation throughout Arizona's three public universities. This year's session features Keynote Speaker Dr. Ken Iserson, UA professor of emergency medicine and Arizona Bioethics Program director.

Iserson is the author of several books ranging in subject from the deterioration of dead bodies to getting into medical school. But Iserson said tomorrow's talk will be more compatible with the conference's theme.

"What I'm going to talk about basically is why (students) should or shouldn't go into the health profession," Iserson said.

Much of the conference focuses on helping truly motivated students find ways to pursue their dreams of getting involved in medicine, Iserson said, because he has no intention to push members of under-represented groups into the medical profession.

Instead, he wants to assist those who are already interested in joining the field.

"It's really a shame how many people are being pushed into medicine when really what we want is people to have a passion," Iserson said. "If you don't have good personal reasons, don't do it."

The conference is open to any students or members of the campus community who are interested in cultural competency in health care. Pre-med students are also invited to attend a workshop today from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The conference will be held tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in McClelland Hall. Tickets will be sold at the door for $10 the day of the conference, or call 621-5531 or e-mail josiegin@u.arizona.edu to purchase tickets beforehand.

The student organization Fostering and Achieving Cultural Equity and Sensitivity is sponsoring the event.



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