Monthly Update
As attempts continue to repeal the Affordable Care Act, a growing share of Americans believe that the federal government has a responsibility to make sure all Americans have health care coverage, according to a new Pew Center survey.  
Patient Profile
"Celia" was referred to dermatology by internal medicine for a persistent, disfiguring skin condition which was having a severe impact on her self-esteem and quality of life. While not dangerous, the condition was very visible to others and affected the way she was perceived and treated in the workplace. She had previously tried over-the-counter treatments which proved ineffective, and arrived at her dermatology appointment frustrated and embarrassed.

Casa's medical provider examined the patient and discussed with her the potential risks and benefits of all treatment options, including no treatment. Celia chose to pursue prescription medication (which, while not inexpensive, was made more affordable through the prescription drug discount information Casa's GUIA Program shared with her). When she was seen for follow up weeks later, Celia's condition was visibly better. She was very pleased with the results and described herself as more confident at work - and by extension, more effective at her job.

Celia's story illustrates the positive impact that dermatological treatment can have on one's life, and the role Casa services play in helping patients participate more fully in all aspects of life.
Volunteer Spotlight

This month our Spotlight shines on Francisca Chou, who will celebrate two years of volunteering with Casa in June. Fran graduates later this month from Washington University with a BA in Anthropology - Global Health and Environment, a BA in Spanish, and a minor in Biology.

After interning with Casa during a previous summer, Fran chose to return to us this Spring as an intern, where she has found the opportunity to play an active role in alleviating some of the linguistic and cultural barriers that can arise in clinical settings.

Francisca Chou

"I have loved volunteering at Casa de Salud, not just because I am passionate about my responsibilities as an interpreter, but because I have made many deep friendships and am proud to be a part of such a strong team," Fran said.

"Volunteering for Casa has been one of the most impactful experiences on my own path to medicine. Casa has never failed in providing me an opportunity to learn. I am so thankful for Casa, its mission, and the friendships I have developed while volunteering here."

Thank you, Fran, for your eagerness to serve, your dependability and your commitment!
Support for Casa
We are incredibly grateful to the William T. Kemper Foundation - Commerce Bank, Trustee for awarding Casa a $150,000 grant in support of building renovations to launch our Mental Health Collaborative.

Please consider a donation to Casa today. It's easy! You
can click here to make a gift on-line, or you call us at 314-977-1200.

Your generosity makes Casa de Salud the premier resource for affordable and quality care for the foreign-born community in the St. Louis region!
Trivia Night 2017

Our 2nd annual trivia night returns on August 26, presented by Friends of Casa.

The event will again be held at the Allied Health Building on the medical campus of Saint Louis University. The theme will be "eclipse" in keeping with the August eclipse that will be the first one visible from St. Louis since 1442.

Please save the date, and look for more details in upcoming editions of this newsletter, as well as on our social media.
Casa at a Glance

107 Referrals
(1,170 in FY 17)
104 Navigations  
(886 in FY 17)

40 Financial assistance appointments    
(446 in FY 17) 

saved by patients  
($1,374,216 total in FY 17)

407 Visits
(4,332 in FY 17

323 Unique patients   
(3,204 in FY 17)      
282 Volunteer provider hours
(3,246 total hours for FY 17) 
Watch Our Video!
Casa de Salud - Compassionate Path to Wellness 
¡Zocaloco! 2017

This past Saturday we celebrated the 4th edition of ¡Zocaloco! It was a fantastic night of fun and celebration, while also raising the necessary funds to provide ongoing services to the many Hispanic and immigrant cultures that have become part of the fabric of our region.
Music from artists representing 12 countries performed while 14 artisans exhibited a variety of crafts, art and jewelry, all while guests were treated to the delicious Cuban delicacies of Chef Issac.
Later in the evening we honored the immediate past Dean of Saint Louis University School of Medicine, Dr. Philip Alderson, and the immediate past Dean of Washington University School of Medicine, Dr. Larry Shapiro, in recognition of the lasting impact each has made on medical education in St. Louis and beyond.
We finished the night with some serious Salsa dancing, which helped everyone work off the dulce de leche rum cake and Cuban custard that was served for dessert!
In all, we raised over $350,000 thanks to the incredible generosity of our supporters. You can be sure that all of us at Casa will put those funds to maximum use in caring for people who need primary clinical care and specialty care case management.

Look for photos of the event in our next newsletter, as well as on our Facebook page and on Twitter.

Thank you to everyone who came out, and we'll see you the following May for the next ¡Zocaloco!
Welcome Grant Owen!

This month Casa welcomes a new receptionist, Grant Owen, who hails from Los Angeles. He is in St. Louis as an undergraduate at Washington University studying math, with plans to go on to medical school. Grant is also a member of the University's football team and enjoys playing all types of sports, hiking, or any other sort of physical activity.
Grant Owen   

As a receptionist, command of the Spanish language is a must, and Grant has that covered.

"I learned Spanish while volunteering as a full-time Spanish missionary in Florida for two years prior to coming here to St. Louis," Grant said. "I'm very excited to be working at the Casa de Salud and I look forward to being able to help minorities in the St. Louis community receive the medical care they need."

And we look forward to working with you to do just that, Grant. Welcome aboard! 
Casa Medical Director Recognized for Excellence

For 35 years Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM) has honored Alumni for outstanding personal achievement and professional accomplishments at their Alumni Awards Banquet. Dr. Gary Ratkin, a Casa de Salud provider and medical director, received one of four Alumni achievement Awards for 2017.
Dr. Gary Ratkin 
In his biography, Ratkin cited his work at Casa de Salud as an example of personal achievement that lead to the WUMS Alumni Association selecting him for this award.  He pointed out that he is "proud of the outstanding low cost patient care, exemplary medical interpreter service, and unique navigation options provided to patients at Casa."

There is no doubt about just how impactful Gary has been for Casa. He functions as a key part of quality assurance for the clinic, working with Casa staff and his medical colleagues to ensure that everyone who comes to Casa receives excellent care. We are very grateful to have Dr. Gary Ratkin as part of our team!

Casa welcomes Dr. John Mulvahill to our volunteer medical provider team. Dr. Mulvahill has a background in geriatrics and will see patients for internal medicine.

Casa thanks the following providers who celebrate their anniversaries with us this month:
Donald Blum, MD - 5 Years
Mary Christman, PT - 5 Years
Catherine Moore, RN - 1 Year
Gerald Medoff, MD - 3 Years 
David Montani, MD  - 3 Years
Vicki Moran, RN  - 2 Years
Kristen Stein, RN  - Years  
Letter from the President
At a recent conference, Ness Sandoval, Associate Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Saint Louis University, showed that Missouri is one of only three states whose immigrant population declined since 2010. Coincidentally, according to Business Insider, Missouri's economic rank among the states is #42.

Too many continue to vilify the foreign born, ironically to their own detriment. Today's immigrants continue to make our great country even stronger. 41% of immigrants have a college degree compared to 30% of native-born people. They're also more likely to hold an advanced degree and twice as likely to start a business. In fact, 30% of Fortune 500 companies based in Missouri were founded by immigrants or their children. And by the way, if you own an IPhone, be glad that Steve Jobs' father immigrated to the U.S. from Syria.

My own parents experienced the immigrant journey, fleeing the violence of Castro's Cuba. The United States of America took them in, and transformed their lives. They were teenagers with broken English, an unfinished education, and no money, but this was a land of opportunity, and they made the most of it, in the tradition of immigrants who've come to America over almost 250 years.

At Casa de Salud, every day I see immigrants, mostly Hispanics but also from 21 non-Latino countries, come through our doors in search of the same opportunities my parents received: a chance to work, a chance to live, and a chance to give back to a country that said yes to their yearning to breathe free.

Let's continue to say "yes," and build a brighter future for all of us.
Jorge Riopedre
President, Casa de Salud

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