Latino Health organization announces first Latina Chief Medical Officer
Zócalo Health has appointed Dr. Sarah Lopez due to her experience and work treating the Latino community.
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Zócalo Health, a Latino founded digital health company created to aid Latinos, has announced the appointment of their first Latina Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Sarah Lopez.
In her position, Dr. Lopez will lead Zócalo Health in developing their care model, their clinical team, and the company's Latino culture aligned services as they build their practice.
Born in Orange County, California, Dr. Lopez attended medical school at the University of California, Irvine and business school at UCI's Paul Merage School of Business.
Additionally, she was in the first cohort of the UCI's first Program In Medical Education for the Latino Community (PRIME-LC), a program focusing on training culturally competent and highly qualified doctors to serve the diverse population of Southern California.
Following graduation from medical school, she held residency at LAC+USC for Emergency Medicine, attending one of the nation's top EM training programs.
"I firmly believe in Zócalo Health's mission to radically transform the healthcare system in the U.S. with a very specific focus on the Latino community," said Dr. Sarah Lopez, Chief Medical Officer at Zócalo Health, in a press release.
"I'm proud to join a team that incorporates our community's values and traditions to make healthcare a more personal experience. I couldn't be more thrilled to help expand and build a more equitable landscape for Latinos from the ground up,” she continued.
Her career mission aligns closely with Zócalo Health’s.
Zócalo Health was founded by Erik Cardenas after his work in developing Amazon Care, where he decided to strike out on his own to provide specialized care by and for Latinos, operating in both California and Texas.
Cardenas has found that Latinos have disproportionate access to healthcare at a ratio of one primary care physician for every five to six thousand residents in predominantly Latino neighborhoods.
To be able to provide for their communities, last year Zócalo Health held a fundraiser to support their launch, raising $5 million in support for their virtual primary care services.
In order to facilitate this healthcare, Zócalo Health pairs its patients with promotoras de salud — community health workers hired from members of the communities they support — to engage them and help them understand and navigate the healthcare system.
"Our Latino community continues to face significant health inequities. To address these, we must build teams that have lived experiences and can connect with our patients on a more personal level," said Zócalo Health CEO Erik Cardenas.
"We are excited to welcome Dr. Lopez, who shares the vision of Zócalo Health. With her at the helm, we will build a clinical foundation that will bridge many of the disparities faced by our community,” he continued.
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