Initiatives Seek To Raise Prostate Cancer Awareness Among Black Men, Improve Health Outcomes, Encourage Cardiovascular Exercise Among Minorities, Other Efforts
The following summarizes recent efforts and initiatives that seek to reduce racial health disparities.
- Charles County, Md.: Ministers Alliance of Charles County and Vicinity; local health officials; Claudia Baquet, a doctor and specialist in health disparities at the University of Maryland School of Medicine; and state Sen. Thomas Middleton (D) have joined efforts to launch an awareness campaign to educate men in the county, particularly black men, about prostate cancer, the AP/Washington Examiner reports. Men in the county have the highest prostate cancer diagnosis and death rates in the state are significantly above the national average, according to the AP/Examiner. The group in June began a $280,000 public awareness campaign, hoping to reach 2,000 men at health fairs, ethnic festivals, barbershops and churches and screen at least 200 of them. An old schoolhouse will be converted into a health clinic to conduct the screenings (Rein, AP/Washington Examiner, 8/16).
Gullapalli & Associates: Educational strategy firm G&A will facilitate and manage an initiative among several national organizations that aims to improve quality of care and health outcomes for minorities. Participating organizations include: the American College of Cardiology, the Association of Black Cardiologists, the National Kidney Foundation, Joslin Diabetes Center, the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the Institute for Johns Hopkins Nursing. The multi-year educational initiative will provide a series of interventions in multiple formats for various health care providers. The effort will focus on conditions disproportionately affecting the minority communities -- cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and chronic kidney disease -- and look at various aspects of patient care, including health care quality effectiveness, patient safety, and timeliness of and access to health care services. The program also will include a performance improvement system for physicians to apply to their practices (Gullapalli & Associates release, 8/8).
- Miami: Former National Basketball Association player Tim Hardaway has launched the Adult Health and Well Being Walking Club, which aims to improve cardiovascular health in the black community, the Miami Herald reports. The club will meet three times weekly for evening walks and education on proper nutrition and benefits of exercise. Participants also can sign up for the "I Pledge to be Fit" program, which offers body fat analysis and physicals (Kirchner, Miami Herald, 8/19).
- North Carolina: The North Carolina Health and Wellness Trust Fund on Monday began a diabetes-focused media campaign that aims to reduce health disparities among minorities in the state, the Ashville Citizen-Times reports. The campaign is part of the trust fund's $12.6 million Eliminating Health Disparities Initiative that began in 2006. The campaign began with a television ad targeting black adults and was followed by radio ads aimed at American Indians and Hispanics (Ashville Citizen-Times, 8/18).
- Samoho: Samoho, a health care company based in Mexico City, this week opened up three pharmacies in Florida retail clinics that cater mostly to Mexican customers, the Wall Street Journal's "Health Blog" reports. The clinics, called MediGo, are staffed with physicians affiliated with South Miami Hospital, according to the blog. Guillermo Rochin, CEO of Samoho, said he expects the clinics to become profitable in about two years. The company plans to open more clinics and urgent care centers in South Florida in the next few years (Goldstein, "Health Blog," Wall Street Journal, 8/15).
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