To address these problems, AHRQ and the Ad Council have created a new Spanish language campaign called Conoce las Preguntas, or Know the Questions. Through TV, radio, print and Web ads, the new campaign encourages Hispanics to get more involved in their health care and to talk with their doctors.
One ad, for example, shows a middle-aged man with a backache asking for treatment advice from his barber, a woman in a laundromat, and a friend at the gym. Each offers different — and sometimes conflicting — remedies: use heat to relieve the ache, use cold, and exercise. Finally, in the last part of the ad, the man asks his doctor what he should do about his aching back.
These public service announcements also offer tips to help Hispanics prepare for medical appointments by thinking about questions to ask during doctors' visits. Additional tips include talking to the doctor about all symptoms, habits and treatments; making sure you understand what your doctor tells you; and following instructions about medicines or follow-up visits.
The messages direct audiences to visit AHRQ's Spanish-language website for important health information.
This is only one effort to improve health and health care for Hispanics. Federal health clinics offer a range of health services, even if patients don't have insurance. They provide checkups, treatments if you're sick, care for pregnant women and immunizations for children. These clinics are located in most cities and in many rural areas. Go to the Find a Health Center website to find one in your area.