National Conference in Denver to Examine Colorado Law Barring Illegal Aliens from State Services

Denver, CO, November 05, 2008 --( A national convention meeting in Denver will examine whether a recent Colorado law denying state-supported health services to illegal aliens is hurting non-profits’ ability to assess the effectiveness of their programs that target communities of color.

The roundtable on Colorado House Bill 1123 is one of several sessions focusing on Colorado health programs and policies that will be held during the American Evaluation Association’s 2008 conference Nov. 5-8 at the Hyatt Regency Denver that will be. Reporters are encouraged to attend these sessions and should contact AEA Communications Director Damon Thompson at 912-429-9440 to obtain media passes and up-to-date locations for all events.

The illegal aliens law bans the provision of state-supported services to anyone who cannot provide government-issued identification. Many Hispanics - both documented and undocumented – now fear to seek such services, and those who obtain services are less likely to provide any additional data for evaluation purposes.

Participants in the HB1123 roundtable will include Deborah W. Trujillo and Theresa Rosner Salazar from Research Evaluation Associates for Latinos and Victoria Watson from Colorado State University at Pueblo. The session will begin at 1:35 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 7.

Other conference sessions featuring Colorado programs or policies include the following:

· Rapid Learning Health Systems - Using the nation’s largest civilian electronic health records system, Kaiser Permanente Colorado is developing a rapid-learning health system to provide real-time opportunities to find the evidence base for procedures, to find variations and increases in health care spending and use, and to find ways to improve the health of minorities and special populations. Presenters will include Arne Beck, R. Sam Lawson, James Dearing, and Doug Conner, all from Kaiser Permanente Colorado, will assess the development of this system. The session will begin at 9:15 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 6.

· Genetic Counseling Services for Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer - At Kaiser Permanente Colorado, only 30% of all members referred for genetic counseling for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC) actually participate. Alanna Kulchak Rahm and Jason Glanz of Kaiser Permanente Colorado will discuss their recent survey to determine what factors can predict the likelihood of participation. The session will begin at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 8.

· HIV/AIDS, Substance Abuse Prevention – A panel of local experts will discuss their evaluation of the Fortaleciendo la Comunidad project, a program designed for and by the Latino community in West Denver program aimed at preventing HIV, sexual transmitted infections, and substance abuse. Participants will include Kathryn DeRoche, Antonio Olmos and Lydia Prado of the Mental Health Center of Denver; Hollie Granato of the University of Colorado-Denver; and Shara Shaw of the University of Northern Colorado. The session will begin at 10:55 am on Thursday, Nov. 6.

· Obesity – Representatives of Kaiser Permanente Colorado and Virginia Tech University will discuss their evaluations of LiveWell Colorado, a multi-community program to implement evidence-based strategies to reduce obesity. The session will begin at 3:05 p.m. on Saturday, Nov 8.

· Mental Health: John Mahalik, Director of Program Evaluation and Research at Jefferson Center for Mental Health, a community mental health center in West suburban Denver, will describe his systemic evaluation approach to actively engage participants in fostering multi-level change (individual, group, organization and community) for internal and external consumers of evaluation and mental health services. The session will begin at 10:55 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 6.

American Evaluation Association
Damon Thompson