UA Health Sciences Hispanic Center of Excellence and UA Department of Spanish and Portuguese Introduce Spanish Language Classes for Health Sciences Students

Publish Date: 
Thursday, October 13, 2016 - 5:00pm

To improve the cultural competency of future health-care providers looking to serve Hispanic communities, the University of Arizona Health Sciences (UAHS) Hispanic Center of Excellence and the UA Department of Spanish and Portuguese have introduced Spanish language classes for health sciences students.

The effort is part of a multi-faceted initiative to provide students interested in health sciences, including graduate students, a Spanish language learning experience. The aim is to improve population health outcomes by better preparing future and current health-care providers working among Spanish-speaking populations.

The UA Department of Spanish and Portuguese, in consultation with health professionals, developed the Spanish-language classes as part of a collaborative effort to increase the language competency of health-care professionals at UAHS colleges and the community at large. The classes will allow students to fulfill their undergraduate language requirements in classes designed to improve their health-related language competency in Spanish and provide them skills to deliver health-care services in Spanish.

The classes will begin in spring semester 2017 with first- and second-year offerings (Spanish 101-202) catered to undergraduate pre-health students. It also will include similar offerings for graduate students in the health sciences disciplines enrolled at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson and the UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.

Part of a larger collaboration, the Department of Spanish and Portuguese and the UAHS Hispanic Center of Excellence have created the following programs to improve the Spanish language skills and the cultural competency of health-care providers serving Hispanic communities:

  • The Bilingual Medical Spanish/Cultural Competence Distinction Track, a graduate medical education training program for residents at Banner – University Medical Center South;
  • The Bilingual Medical Spanish Distinction Track, which trains medical students to be culturally and linguistically competent to work as bilingual Spanish-English health-care providers;
  • And the Global MedCats, a UA Study Abroad program, offering medical Spanish immersion programs in Costa Rica and Spain.

For more information about the classes, please contact: Yadira Berigan: or Nichole Guard:

To reserve your spot in one of the special sections, please contact: Oscar Beita at

For additional information about UAHS Hispanic Center of Excellence, please visit the website at the University of Arizona Health Sciences:

About the University of Arizona Health Sciences

The University of Arizona Health Sciences is the statewide leader in biomedical research and health professions training. The UA Health Sciences includes the UA Colleges of Medicine (Phoenix and Tucson), Nursing, Pharmacy and Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, with main campus locations in Tucson and the growing Phoenix Biomedical Campus in downtown Phoenix. From these vantage points, the UA Health Sciences reaches across the state of Arizona and the greater Southwest to provide cutting-edge health education, research, patient care and community outreach services. A major economic engine, the UA Health Sciences employs almost 5,000 people, has nearly 1,000 faculty members and garners more than $126 million in research grants and contracts annually. For more information:

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