In Laredo (and other US/Mexico Border communities), obesity is an epidemic: 78.2% of males and 72.2% of females and 30% of primary school children are overweight; in Laredo we have a disproportion rate of Diabetes Mellitus (DM) and 54% of deaths especially in women is due to cardiovascular disease. Mexican-American children in particular are at risk for developing adult onset diabetes due to obesity and/or heredity and environmental factors.  The National Center for Health Statistics reported that Mexican-American children are about twice as likely to be obese than other groups and the proportion of obese children in the 6-11 years of age group continues to increase since 1999.  Finally the US/Mexico Border population is aging and poorer increasing the risks. The health care economic impact of these issues, emerging continued risk of malnutrition, inadequate access to affordable and accessible healthier foods, lack of exercise and lack of early access to care and screening is overwhelming.  

Target Agencies

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Health and Human Services

Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

National Institute of Health (NIH)

US Department of Education (school based programs)

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)


Dr. Hector Gonzalez
Health Department Director

2600 Cedar Avenue
Laredo, Texas 78040

Phone: (956) 795-4900
Fax: (956) 726-2632


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