Dr. Elmer Huerta Named White House Prevention & Public Health Champion of Change

Recognized for Innovative Approach to health promotion and disease prevention

September 9, 2013

Recognized for Innovative Approach to health promotion and disease prevention

Washington, D.C., Sept. 9, 2013 – The White House has named Elmer Huerta, MD, MPH, as a Prevention and Public Health Champion of Change for his visionary work to eliminate healthcare disparities among minority groups, especially Latinos. Dr. Huerta is founder and director of the Cancer Preventorium at MedStar Washington Hospital Center’s Washington Cancer Institute.

On Tues., Sept. 10th, Dr. Huerta will be honored at the White House, along with seven others who are making an extraordinary difference in their communities. President Obama and his Administration have made prevention and public health a top priority, because they have lasting effects on the health of Americans. They created the Champions of Change program as an opportunity to feature individuals, businesses and organizations doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. The White House received close to 900 nominations for this Champions of Change recognition.

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN), the advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, nominated Dr. Huerta who was its first Latino national president of ACS, a position he held in 2007.

“I am extremely proud to be mentioned alongside these individuals who have made important contributions to their communities and professions,” said Dr. Huerta. “I am convinced that we need to create a health care system that focuses on the person without overt disease. A system that is based in health promotion and disease prevention and is not centered in the sick person.”

For more than two decades, Dr. Huerta has been committed to improving the quality of life for Latinos by using media to spread his message of healthy lifestyles and cancer prevention.

His Spanish-language radio and television programs are nationally and internationally syndicated, and he is regarded as a trusted source of medical information to the Latino community in the United States and Latin America. Dr. Huerta is currently medical contributor for CNN en Español.

Nearly all of Dr. Huerta’s patients report having learned about the Cancer Preventorium through one of his radio or TV programs, which he says shows that patients are getting his messages about ways to decrease cancer risk through healthy behaviors.

Since its inception in 1994, more than 32,000 Latinos, mostly poor and uninsured, have been seen at the Cancer Preventorium.

The Champions of Change event is closed to press but will be live streamed on the White House website. To watch this event live, visit www.whitehouse.gov/live. at 10 a.m. ET on Sept. 10th. To read more about Dr. Huerta's work, visit www.whitehouse.gov/champions/prevention-and-public-health/elmer-huerta-md.

Media Contact

So Young Pak
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