Dr. Pilar Ortega is an emergency room physician at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center. She is also an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Illinois Chicago, where she teaches the Medical Spanish program. Her expertise is in Hispanic Healthcare, and her dedication to it led her to found and lead the Medical Organization for Latino Advancement (MOLA), a nonprofit outreach organization. It all began with a moment when, she told Start TV, "I started to recognize that there was a growing Hispanic/Latino community that needed increased access to health services."
To better serve her patients, Dr. Ortega worked to become an interpreter, powered by a belief in herself to fuel change as an individual. This belief was instilled by her mother when she was young. She said the one thing she wish she knew sooner in her healthcare career was "to not be afraid of making that connection" with her patients.
Watch Dr. Pilar Ortega explain the perks of taking a non-traditional path: