Working areas

The National Asociation of Medical Spanish includes 5 working groups in the following areas:

Curriculum and Resources

We have created an assessment tool for reviewing materials that are used for Medical Spanish education to determine their utility in medical Spanish courses in medical schools. The list of resources to be evaluated is classified in 3 types: written (e.g. text books), audiovisual (podcast, videos, etc) and supplementary (e.g. diccionario de términos médicos, Medline Plus en español).
  • Karol Hardin, PhD, Professor of Spanish, Baylor University, Waco, TX 
  • Tiffany Shin, MD, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Wake Forest School of Medicine (WFSOM)


 We have created 5 major competencies along with its  corresponding performance objectives. There is an emphasis on including the socio-cultural context, which is very important to incorporate in linguistic competencies, specially in a medical context and considering the sociolinguistics map of the United States.
  • Marco Alemán, MD, Professor, Department of Medicine, University of North Carolina School of Medicine, and Director of the Comprehensive Advanced Medical Program of Spanish (CAMPOS), Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
GME Working Subgroup
Mission: to promote and develop evidence-based approaches to medical Spanish education and assessment in the graduate medical education (GME) setting.
More information
  • Amanda Reis Dube, MD, Pediatric Hospitalist, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri
  • John (JC) Cowden, MD, MPH, Professor of Pediatrics, Children's Mercy Kansas City/University of Missouri - Kansas City, Kansas City, Missouri/Kansas

Train the Trainer

We are working to standardize the training and preparation of those who intend to teach medical Spanish (who many times come from very different backgrounds). The main goal is to set a “baseline” that would define what core areas need to be taught through a series of online modules that participants can take at various levels and considering all their profiles.
  • Glenn Martinez, PhD MPH, Dean of the College of Liberal and Fine Arts, Professor of Spanish, Bicultural/Bilingual Studies, and Public Health. Stumberg Distinguished University Chair​
  • Norma A. Pérez MD, DrPH, Assistant Dean, Student Affairs, Director, John Sealy School of Medicine Special Programs/Hispanic Center of Excellence, Associate Professor, Internal Medicine – Geriatrics, President, Hispanic Serving Health Professions Schools, Author, Clinical Conversational Spanish for English and Spanish Healthcare Professionals Online Course.

 Provider Certification

We are in touch with the Competencies group to build a poll of standardize SP cases + rubric to assess candidates' ability to work in Spanish in medical contexts such as the patient's medical interview.
  • Cristina Pérez-Cordón, PhD, Language and Communications Training Unit, United Nations Headquarters, New York. Fellow member, Institute for International Communication, St. John's University, New York.
  • Lisa Diamond, MD, MPH, FACP, Associate Attending, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Immigrant Health and Cancer Disparities Service, Hospital Medicine Service, Memorial-Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Program Evaluation

We are developing a "Pilot Program"  that would put into practice and evaluate the work of the other four groups: the resources to use in a course, train-the-trainer process, the competencies, and the assessment of the performance of the students. We trial them in a national representative sample of +20 Medical Schools throughout the country over the next 2 academic years. Collected data from schools will be sent to a centralized location that will analyze the results to improve the programs as we go.
  • Alejandra Zapién-Hidalgo, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor, Family and Community Medicine, Director, UA-COM Clinical Medical Spanish-Distinction Track.
  • Pilar Ortega, MD, Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Medical Education, Department of Emergency Medicine, Director of Medical Spanish Curriculum and Research Hispanic Center of Excellence in Medicine, University of Illinois College of Medicine - Chicago. Founder & Immediate-Past President, Medical Organization for Latino Advancement (MOLA)
Pre-Health Undergraduate Education Working Subgroup
Mission; to develop evidence-based approaches to pre-health undergraduate medical Spanish education to adequately and effectively training pre-health students in medical Spanish, focusing on both linguistic and cultural competence, to be successful at the graduate level and in their future careers in the health sciences. We aim to:
  1. Create a network of Medical Spanish educators to facilitate exchange of ideas, experience, and resources. 
  2. Facilitate resources, evaluation methods, suggested content, objectives, competencies, etc. 
  3. Encourage instructors and institutions to offer opportunities for their students to apply their knowledge of and interest in the language and culture of the Spanish-speaking world to their future careers.
  • Alyssia Miller De Rutté, PhD, Assistant Professor of Spanish for Specific Purposes at Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO.
  • 2nd Co-Chair: vacant