Belleville, NJ - Leaders of more than 100 Latino-focused organizations in Belleville, and its surrounding communities of Newark, Bloomfield, Montclair, and Jersey City gathered at Clara Maass Medical Center on Saturday, June 9th for breakfast and a discussion on meeting the healthcare needs of the Latino community.


“As a leader in healthcare, we want the Latino community to know that our doors are open and that we are always here to assist them with their healthcare needs” said Mary Ellen Clyne, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer at Clara Maass Medical Center.  


“Our Center of Excellence for Latino Health was created in 2016 to identify ways to help the Latino community to access health care” said Sarah Bonilla, MPH, Program Manager of the Center for Excellence for Latino Health at Clara Maass.  “This event allowed us begin to have an ongoing conversation with business leaders, health departments, community organizers, nonprofit and community-based organizations, churches and other houses of worship to work towards addressing our shared goals to help the Latino community achieve good health” Bonilla said.

Sign Up for E-News


Held in The Learning Center at Clara Maass Medical Center, the discussion was offered in English and Spanish, and included Frank Mazzarella, MD, Chief Medical Officer who introduced a video highlighting the recent induction of the hospital’s namesake Clara Louise Maass into the New Jersey Hall of Fame. 


The program also included greetings from Wilfredo Caraballo, Esq., a member of the Board of Trustees of Clara Maass Medical Center. Caraballo is the first member of the Board of Trustees that is of Latino heritage.


Thomas Ortiz, MD, Medical Director of the Center of Excellence and Luis Espina, MD, who discussed the health needs of the Latino community and how those challenges can be addressed by establishing a medical home and regular visits with a primary care physician.


Chief Human Resources Officer Alfred Torres, MBA , SPHR led a discussion on employment opportunities available at the facility, and Director of the Patient Experience, Javier Alvarez, MBA demonstrated the use of MARTTI, a video platform that allows hospital staff to access language translation services  in more than 250 languages including Spanish. He also mentioned volunteerism at the hospital as a pathway for high-school and college students to careers in the health professions.


Additional speakers included Edwin Renderos and Todd Miller, both Directors of Business Development at Clara Maass who are responsible for alignment of physician services with the hospital.


“This unique, outstanding opportunity that Clara Maass has created for the Latino community is very much appreciated” said Diego Munoz, community leader and President of the Ecuador- American Chamber of Commerce.  


The Center of Excellence for Latino Health has received generous support from the Healthcare Foundation of New Jersey and Verizon NJ to support specific initiatives in the Latino community including: health education and screenings, to establish health ministries in local churches and other houses of worship and to offer programs that will help improve access to healthcare for the Latino community.


For more information about the Center of Excellence for Latino Health at Clara Maass, call 973-450-2996.


Wilfredo Caraballo, Esq. Member of the Clara Maass Medical Center

Board of Trustees greets attendees



About Clara Maass Medical Center
Located in Belleville, NJ, Clara Maass Medical Center, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, provides a complete continuum of care to residents of northern New Jersey. Clara Maass recently completed state-of-the-art campus expansion project featuring a new four-story 87,000 square foot building with a private, 32-bed Intensive Care Unit, new Main Entrance and Lobby, Retail Pharmacy, Patient Registration Area and designated new space to accommodate our future Emergency Department expansion.  Clara Maass’ services include: The Cancer Center, Center for Breast Health and Disease Management, Radiation Oncology, Infusion Therapy, Cardiac Services Elective and Emergency Angioplasty and Cardiac Rehabilitation, The Pain Management Center, The Joint & Spine Institute, a Vascular Lab, The Vein Center, The Wound Center, The Center for Sleep Disorders, The Bariatric Surgery Center, Rehabilitation; Therapy Services which includes, physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy, The Eye Surgery Center, Maternity Services and Parent Education, Pediatrics, Center of Excellence for Latino Health, and the Health and Wellness Center.  Clara Maass has been recognized nine Grade ‘A’ scores for patient safety and quality by The Leapfrog Group. It is listed by the American Hospital Association as one of Healthcare’s Most Wired hospitals. In 2016-17 Clara Maass has received the Healthgrades Obstetrics and Gynecology Excellence Award and the Labor and Delivery Excellence Award. Clara Maass received Disease Specific Care Certification from the Joint Commission for Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS), Congestive Heart Failure, Hip Replacement, Knee Replacement, Cardiac Rehabilitation and Advanced Certification in Palliative Care. Clara Maass earned Clara Maass’ steadfast commitment to improve the health and well-being of the communities it serves is exemplified through award winning programs including the nationally recognized HELP Volunteer program, recipient of the American Hospital Association 2017 HAVE Award, and the Wellness Assessment Van for Elders (WAVE) which was recognized as the New Jersey Hospital Association’s 2017 HRET Community Outreach Award.  For a physician referral or more information about Clara Maass, call 1-888-724-7123 or visit