SAN ANTONIO (Jan. 11, 2010) — Norma Martinez Rogers, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, professor of nursing at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, has been named an inaugural member of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC).
As a commission member, Dr. Martinez Rogers, a professor of family nursing care in the Health Science Center’s School of Nursing, will serve a one-year term as a national adviser to Congress on issues regarding the Children’s Health Insurance Program and Medicaid, as well as review Medicaid and CHIP access policies. The 17-member commission was established by the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009.
“Many highly qualified individuals sought to serve on the commission,” said Gene L. Dodaro, acting U.S. comptroller general and head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office, in a press release announcing the recent appointments. “Those selected bring to MACPAC an impressive range of professional expertise and experience as well as geographic diversity and meet the specific requirements of the legislation.”
“It is an honor for me to serve on this commission,” Dr. Martinez Rogers said. “I will be in a position to advocate for all the children who are underserved and ensure that they receive the best medical care and preventive services. These are much-needed programs and hopefully this commission will ensure that these services are easily accessible.”
The professor has been a Health Science Center faculty member since 1996. She specializes in cultural diversity, mentoring, recruitment and retention of nursing students through her research and teaching. She also works with federal female offenders who are under community supervision and has a re-entry intervention program for them.
Dr. Martinez Rogers, currently president of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses, was in the national limelight frequently in 2009, a year tightly focused on the national health care initiative.
In October, she spoke twice to congressional leaders regarding health care access and quality of care issues for minority patients. On Oct. 20, she was one of six speakers who spoke before congressional leaders of minority-based caucuses regarding health care reform. Oct. 29, she spoke during the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute briefing titled “Hispanics and Health Care Reform: Fostering Alternative Solutions and Best Practices.”
On Oct. 23, Dr. Martinez Rogers served on an expert panel for the federal government’s Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Panelists discussed reducing disparities in health care quality by using health information technology and other quality improvement strategies. During the conference, she provided feedback on five AHRQ-initiated studies involving underserved populations. The studies focus on:
• Care for hospitalized children with asthma
• Care for adults with diabetes who are hospitalized for an amputation
• Prenatal care for expectant mothers
• Communication between providers and patients who are members of low-income and higher-income families
• Implementation of health information technology in offices that cannot afford it but that provide care for underserved populations
The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio is the leading research institution in South Texas and one of the major health sciences universities in the world. With an operating budget of $668 million, the Health Science Center is the chief catalyst for the $16.3 billion biosciences and health care sector in San Antonio’s economy. The Health Science Center has had an estimated $36 billion impact on the region since inception and has expanded to six campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. More than 25,600 graduates (physicians, dentists, nurses, scientists and other health professionals) serve in their fields, including many in Texas. Health Science Center faculty are international leaders in cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, aging, stroke prevention, kidney disease, orthopaedics, research imaging, transplant surgery, psychiatry and clinical neurosciences, pain management, genetics, nursing, dentistry and many other fields. For more information, visit www.uthscsa.edu.