Lawmakers from 6 state capitols to visit Health Science Center

SAN ANTONIO (June 24, 2008)—Issues in cardiology will be the topic this week as a group of state legislators visit The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

State Sen. Leticia Van de Putte of San Antonio will welcome a small group of colleagues tomorrow and Thursday from Kansas, Oklahoma, Maryland, Missouri and New Mexico. During the day-and-a-half program, which is part of the National Conference of State Legislatures “Legislators in the Lab” series, academic cardiologists will discuss the latest options in treatment of cardiovascular disease, advances in surgical therapy, impact of diabetes, women and heart disease, health care disparities, and aging and the heart.

“I am pleased to present the UT Health Science Center and its faculty’s expertise in cardiology to my colleagues from across the country,” Sen. Van de Putte said. “As legislators we must strive to improve access to quality health care, as our need for cardiac services grows. In Texas specifically, our lives and economic future depend on advancements in the cardiovascular arena.”

A portion of the program will take the legislators to University Hospital, the academic teaching hospital next door to the Health Science Center, for tours of a catheterization laboratory and a non-invasive CT scanning area. Back at the Health Science Center, the legislators will tour the H-E-B Clinical Skills Center, where medical and other students are trained in the fine points of examining patients and documenting their medical histories.

Many of the visiting legislators hold leadership positions in their statehouses and serve on social services, human services or health care policy committees.

“We believe this meeting will prove very beneficial to legislators and the community,” Linda Sikkema of the National Conference of State Legislatures said. “Legislators not only improve health outcomes for their constituents through changes in public policy, they also serve as community leaders and can lead by example when they change their own behavior.”

William L. Henrich, M.D., M.A.C.P., dean of the School of Medicine and vice president for medical affairs at the UT Health Science Center, will welcome the group at 9 a.m. Wednesday, June 25, at the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Campus, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive.

List of visiting state legislators:

The Honorable Bob Bethell, Kansas; The Honorable Scott Big Horse, Oklahoma; The Honorable Talmadge Branch, Maryland; The Honorable Robert Wayne Cooper, Missouri; The Honorable John Heaton, New Mexico; The Honorable Sally Young Jameson, Maryland; The Honorable Ray McCarter, Oklahoma; The Honorable Leticia Van de Putte, Texas

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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 $576 million, the Health Science Center is the chief catalyst for the $15.3 billion biosciences and health care sector in San Antonio’s economy. The Health Science Center has had an estimated $35 billion impact on the region since inception and has expanded to six campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. More than 23,000 graduates (physicians, dentists, nurses, scientists and allied 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, allied health, dentistry and many other fields. For more information, visit

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