Latinos are the fastest growing ethnic group in the nation, yet the number of Latino physicians available to that group declined by 22 percent from 1980 to 2010, according to a 2015 UCLA study.
The need for doctors who can serve the specific needs of Latino patients is great.
Here are 10 of the nation's top Latino physicians who are leading by example and leading recruitment efforts.
DR. FRANK M. CASTILLO
Specializes in Family Medicine at Chicago's Erie Family Health Center. Fie has received numerous honors, including the University of Chicago's Abram L. Harris Achievement Prize, several Physician Recognition Awards from the American Medical Association and citation by EXTRA Newspaper for being one of the top 10 "Doctors Serving the Latino Community." He was selected as Branstad Distinguished Educator by Northwestern University for the years 2014-2016 in recognition of his teaching excellence. He has contributed articles to such publications as Medicine & War and the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved.
DR. LAURA MERCER-ROSA
Is an attending cardiologist at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia's Cardiac Center. The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia's Cardiac Center (aka CHOP) is devoted exclusively to children with heart problems. At CHOP, Mercer-Rosa practices general cardiology and conducts research Into extending lives and improving quality-of-life for the hospital's patients and for all children born with heart problems. "The reason why I do research," she said in a video on the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia's YouTube page, "Is that I want to do something in my research that will help me improve the outcomes in the lives of children with congenital heart disease."
DR. MIGUEL BURCH
Is associate director of minimally invasive surgery at Cedar-Sinai Medical Center In Los Angeles. Burch helps patients fight obesity and diabetes by way of bariatric surgery. "Latinos are 60 percent more likely to need dialysis because of the diabetes," Burch told Latino Leaders in the spring of 2014, "and they're 50 percent more likely to die from the complications with diabetes." Among Burch's honors: "America's Top GI Surgeons Award" from Consumers Research Council of America in 2014, an excellence in teaching award and an excellence in surgical critical care award from Boston University, and the 2001 Medical College of Virginia Merit Scholarship.