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ASU professor and Phoenix NAHN chapter president shares experience in conducting new healthcare law outreach and enrollment

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Adriana Perez, RN, PhD, ANP-BC, assistant professor, co-director of the Hartford Center of Gerontological Nursing Excellence at Arizona State University, was one of four nurses to participate in a national call Jan. 23 with U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, according to a news release.

The nurses shared personal experiences in conducting outreach and enrollment for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, and spoke about the importance of healthcare coverage and new options available through Healthcare.gov.

Bilingual training model details

Perez also is president of the Phoenix chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses, which developed a bilingual training model in partnership with the AARP-Arizona to empower Arizona nurses to educate multicultural communities on the basic provisions of the Affordable Care Act, according to the release.

“Nurses are one of the most trusted professionals, and we make up the largest segment of the healthcare workforce,” Perez said. “Educating people, families and communities on health issues is a major part of nursing’s role.”

The NAHN education program has been funded by the AARP State & Communities Office and the Center to Champion Nursing in America, a joint initiative of AARP and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Between June and November of 2013, the NAHN Phoenix Chapter exceeded the goal of reaching 1,000 multicultural, and in particular, hard-to-reach, Hispanic, Spanish-speaking Arizona residents to make them aware of the new healthcare opportunities.

NAHN members, including 14 RNs, conducted 53 community forums including meeting with individuals and both small and large community organizations.

“We want to bring awareness that through the Affordable Care Act, we can begin to make a difference [in improving health disparities],” Perez said.

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