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December 14, 2016

HACU signs MOU with AMFEM

The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) President and CEO Antonio R. Flores met with Dr. Ricardo León of la Asociación Mexicana de Facultades y Escuelas de Medicina (AMFEM) and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Dec. 13, 2016, in Guadalajara, Mexico. AMFEM represents over 90 institutions in Mexico with medical schools, many accredited in the U.S.

The goal of the MOU is for the two organizations to form an alliance between higher education institutions in the U.S. and Mexico to strengthen and promote opportunities for students seeking to study in medical programs, and increase the number of Hispanic physicians serving Latino communities. According to JAMA Internal Medicine, only 5.2 percent of all practicing physicians in the nation were Hispanic in 2012, contrasted with 18 percent of the U.S. population as Latino. Contributing to the disparity is a decline in the number of Hispanic doctors for every 100,000 Latinos, dropping from 135 in 1980 to 105 in 2010, while for non-Hispanic whites an increase was seen from 211 to 315 for every 100,000 non-Hispanic whites in the same period.

"These dismal numbers on Hispanic physicians must be overcome with due expediency for the good of the nation," said Flores. “One of the first initiatives we intend to undertake as part of the MOU is a pilot project for medical schools in Mexico accredited in the U.S. to prepare a critical mass of Hispanic doctors from the U.S. who would be able to return, pass the board exams and do their residency in our country to become fully licensed physicians. HACU will reach out to member institutions interested in this project to form a consortium with medical schools and motivate young Latino and Latinas to pursue medical careers that otherwise might not be possible.”