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University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Minority Health to Hold National Minority Health Month Activities Locally on April 14


Improving the health status of racial and ethnic minorities who experience premature illness and death from cancer, diabetes, heart disease and a number of other diseases is a major concern in today’s public health and medical care environment. The Center for Minority Health (CMH) of the Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH) at the University of Pittsburgh is a leader in the national effort to eliminate these disparities. In observation of National Minority Health Month, CMH and its Health Disparities Working Groups will hold a day-long series of events from 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday, April 14, to promote healthy behaviors among African Americans, Hispanics and other minority populations. The events will take place at the Kinsley Association, 6435 Frankstown Ave., East Liberty.

The day’s events will focus on seven major health priority areas identified by the Department of Health and Human Services: cancer screening and management, infant mortality, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, immunization and mental health. The goal is to draw attention to risk factors that are preventable causes of premature illness and death among ethnic and racial minority populations, according to Stephen Thomas, Ph.D., Philip Hallen Professor of Community Health and Social Justice at GSPH and director of the CMH.

Activities will include public and mental health and wellness screenings, educational workshops, a 1.5 mile community walk, community health information tables, HIV/AIDS film series and the world-famous Double Dutch Divas from New York City.

“The range of activities we offer at the event will attract people of every age group,” Dr. Thomas said. “Inviting entire families to participate allows us to communicate important health-related messages to a large number of people who need the information not only to change personal lifestyle behaviors but also to improve the health of the entire family.”

The day will begin at 9:30 a.m. with a special community discussion, “Racism and Health,” which will be presented by three of the nation’s leading scholars in medicine and public health: Camara Jones, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., a research director on social determinants of health in the Division of Adult and Community Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, at the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention in Atlanta; Adewale Troutman, M.D., M.P.H., M.A., director of the Louisville, Ky., Metro Health Department; and Rodney G. Hood, M.D., past president of the National Medical Association and president and CEO of the Multicultural Health Disparities Institute in San Diego.

CMH was established in 1994 with a grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation. CMH is committed to taking a lead role in the nation’s prevention agenda to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities as described in Healthy People 2010, a Department of Health and Human Services Initiative.

Details about National Minority Health Month can be viewed on the CMH Web site at . The phone number for the CMH is 412-624-5665.


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