Southern Nevada Health District Reaches Out to Hispanics - 8 News NOW

Paula Francis, Anchor

Southern Nevada Health District Reaches Out to Hispanics

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Diabetes and stroke are occurring more often among Hispanics in Clark County -- yet in many cases, both are preventable. Eye on Health reports on a new effort to raise awareness.

A public service announcement airing on Telemundo encourages Hispanics to dance -- a great form of exercise. It's part of a new outreach program headed by Gail Muniz, an educator with the Southern Nevada Health District.

"Get Healthy Clark County" puts lifestyle changes front and center.

"It's related to tobacco, not smoking, eating well. -- healthy, doing physical activity. Control your weight. Those factors," said Muniz.

At a local meeting of LUCES, a think-tank for Latino issues, concerns are raised over the growing need to prevent chronic disease. Among them, Las Vegas resident, Carlos Ramirez -- a community activist in support of healthy lifestyles. He is himself a diabetic and stroke survivor.

"But, a lot of times diabetes can be prevented. Your lifestyle, your physical activity -- it could be the way you eat, lack of exercise. Things like that. A lot of this can be prevented. A lot of it, not all of it but it can be prevented," he said.

The latest Census count found that Hispanics make up 27-percent of the population of Clark County. Diabetes and heart disease are rising along with the population -- prompting a Spanish version of the "Get Healthy" program. And dancing is at the top of the to-do list.

"You enjoy it. It's fun. And its healthier. Because you are doing a physical activity," said Muniz.

The "Get Healthy Challenge" runs through June 21. For more on the program, click here.

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