Strengthening the Future Health Work Force: Applying the Transtheoretical Model to Improve Retention in Spanish Language Circles

Valerie Moscherosch, “Strengthening the Future Health Work Force:
Applying the Transtheoretical Model to Improve Retention in Spanish Language Circles”
Mentor: Rose Hennessy, Public Health

Learning how to communicate effectively in Spanish, shows respect and helps health professionals implement culturally specific services and treat patients. As the Spanish-speaking community grows, there is a need to address language barriers in health care. The Spanish Tables for Health Students program at UW-Milwaukee allows English-speaking undergraduates and graduates from all disciplines to improve health communication ability in Spanish. This is completed through bi-monthly sessions where students sit around a table together to practice Spanish and learn about health issues in Latino communities. A semi-structured interview was conducted with the program developer of Spanish Tables for health Students from the UW-Milwaukee. Observation of Spanish Tables for Health to support the research to identify the behavioral theories for public health change and program recommendations. One to thirteen participants attend each Spanish session, but the individual participants vary week to week. Therefore, there is a need for improvement in the retention of participates. The use of a Logic Model to help identify the key activities that lead to participating and retention while analyzing the out-puts, and outcomes to better Spanish Tables for Health Students. The Transtheoretical Model is an integrative theory that assesses a readiness to act on a process of change and will be applied to help achieve a greater retention rate. Logic Models are effective tools to assist in program planning, implementation, and evaluation. Theory-based recommendations may assist to improve recruitment and proactive recruitment procedures. The personnel of Spanish Tables for Health Students may consider adapting the recommendations provided. Improving retention of Spanish Tables for Health could help decrease public health disparities in minority health.

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  1. Hello everyone,

    My name is Valerie and I am an undergraduate student in the Zilber School of Public Health. I have researched, “Strengthening the Future Health Work Force: Applying the Transtheoretical Model to Improve Retention in Spanish Language Circles” during Spring 2020. I want to say a special thank you to Rose Hennessy and Maren Hawkins for your guidance throughout this project.

    I welcome any questions or feedback.

    Thank you,
    Valerie Moscherosch

    1. Hi Valerie! I enjoyed reading your presentation on how TTM can be applied to improve the retention in UWM’s Spanish Language Circles. I wonder if you could have adjusted your presentation title to indicate that you developed a logic model for the Director to evaluate their program/organization (Spanish Tables for Health), as opposed to indicating you were planning to implement a program plan based on TTM. I think it would have been interesting for you to walk through how a participant in this specific program may experience the different stages of change. Strengthening our future health care work force, specifically with professionals who look like the folks they’re serving, is becoming increasingly important, as our population continues to become diverse and vibrant.

      Thank you for sharing your work!

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