Health Equity/Research Interest
As a bilingual, Spanish-Speaking neuropsychologist, one of my goals in personal, clinical, and research endeavors is to further the understanding and awareness of cultural and linguistic disparities in neuropsychological assessment and interventions, and overall healthcare. The increasingly diverse cross-cultural landscape of the United States is evolving at a faster rate than current culturally appropriate and psychometrically-sound neuropsychological measures can be validated. Therefore, individuals from under-represented and under-studied minority groups are at increased risk of receiving test measures that are not ‘culture fair,’ which fail to account for differences in educational attainments, cultural salience, metacognitive strategies, and other culture-bound precepts. Data derived from measures lacking adequate psychometric properties can easily lead to incorrect data interpretation and, by extension, faulty treatment recommendations/interventions. Therefore, I have published (book chapters), and co-presented at symposiums and lectures that discuss the psychometric limitations that exist in neuropsychological measures/batteries, as well as highlight the disparities in health-care access across neurological conditions that, unless remediated, could lead to inaccurate diagnosis and treatment, including cognitive remediation/rehabilitation. I have co-led collaborations to further these efforts in national and international mediums, and currently have several papers in progress that highlight this need. The continuation of these works holds the potential to bridge the gap between underrepresented populations and access to cognitive and psychological care that is both of high quality for the patient and cost-effective.
As a neuropsychologist, I conduct comprehensive Spanish and English-language pre- and post-surgical neuropsychological assessments with patients across the lifespan presenting with varying neurological, medical, and neurodevelopmental disorders. As a complement to neurocognitive assessments, I provide individual cognitive remediation services to assist patients with cognitive difficulties in developing and maintaining compensatory strategies.
In my work and research, I seek to promote the importance of cultural and linguistic considerations of neurocognitive assessment and therapeutic interventions in neurosurgical and neurological patients across the lifespan, given the increasingly diverse cross-cultural landscape (i.e., age, race, disability, gender, etc) of the United States. Data derived from measures lacking adequate psychometric properties can easily lead to incorrect data interpretation and, by extension, faulty treatment recommendations/interventions. As such, through membership in The Cornell Center for Health Equity, I look forward to establishing multidisciplinary collaborations with other departments, professionals, and communities with the goal of enhancing a patient’s quality of life and reduce health disparities in neurological and neurosurgical populations. Additionally, I am excited for the opportunity to access vital trainings and seminars.
Department of Neurological Surgery
Area of Expertise (Methods)
Area of Expertise (Content)
Area of interest
Community Engagement and Dissemination, Investigator Development/Mentorship, Education