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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Health needs in Puerto Rico will be theme of forum in NYC

Dr. Lester Martínez López, assistant secretary for health affairs, U.S. Department of Defense

By The Star Staff

Dr. Lester Martínez López, the assistant secretary for health affairs at the United States Department of Defense, will lead a group of speakers at the upcoming Empowerment of Our Communities Conversation, whose theme will be: “Health: Needs and Opportunities for Puerto Rico,” joined by Puerto Rico Senate President José Luis Dalmau Santiago and his counterpart in the island House of Representatives, Speaker Rafael “Tatito” Hernández Montañez, along with Health Secretary Dr. Carlos Mellado López.

“This is an activity of the first order, which is to be held on Friday, June 9, 2023, as part of Puerto Rican Week in New York, where key personalities in the world of medicine on the island participate,” said Wilson Nazario, coordinator of the Conversation in New York. “The panelists will have the opportunity to present their knowledge and talk about the needs and opportunities that Puerto Rico has in the field of health.”

Maj. Gen. Martínez López and the other aforementioned speakers will also be joined by Puerto Rico Mayor Association President Luis Javier Hernández Ortiz, Puerto Rico Physicians & Surgeons Association President Dr. Carlos Díaz Vélez, Puerto Rico Hospitals Association Executive President Jaime Plá Córtes, Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce President Cameron McKenzie, Traffic Safety Commission Executive Director Luis Rodríguez Díaz; Mental Health and Anti-Addiction Services Director Dr. Carlos Rodríguez Mateo, and Dr. Francisco “Paco” Tomei, a scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, among others.

The organizers of the Conversation noted the event is part of the projects executed by CROEM ALUMNI and will be based at La Casa de la Herencia Cultural Puertorriqueña Inc., located at 215 East 99 Street, Suite 18 in New York. The Organizing Committee confirmed that they have invited a group of political leaders from New York to represent the city’s Puerto Rican diaspora residents.

The event will be broadcast live by 18 radio stations in Puerto Rico and the United States, along with several social media platforms, including Facebook.

Although attendance at the activity is free of cost, people who wish to attend must request their entrance ticket by sending an email to or by sending a message through the WhatsApp application 787-409-8376.

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