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Black Barbershop Initiative Sets Up Shop In FL

FT. LAUDERDALE -  The Diabetic Amputation Prevention (DAP) Foundation has announced that it will launch the Florida Initiative of the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program, on Saturday, August 28, 2010.  This unique and innovative program will provide free diabetes and high-blood pressure screenings to men and women at black-owned barbershops and beauty shops throughout Ft. Lauderdale and West Palm Beach.  In addition, on-site medical professionals will provide educational materials about exercise, fitness, obesity, prostate cancer, and breast cancer, as well as a medical resource guide.  For the next several years, the program will travel throughout the United States with the goal of screening 500,000 African American men for diabetes by the year 2012.
 
The Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program, founded by Dr. Bill J. Releford, is pleased to include Black-owned beauty shops for the first time in South Florida, collaborating with Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-Miramar) to address the health care disparities among African American men and women.  Hastings will visit the Neighborhood Unisex Salon in Fort Lauderdale on Saturday, August 28 at 12:00 p.m.  The goal of the event is to empower African American men and women to take control of their health and become health advocates in their communities through education and prevention. 
 
On July 30, 2010, Hastings introduced a resolution (H.Res. 1591) recognizing the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program and expressed his continued commitment to supporting similar initiatives that seek to improve health outcomes in black communities across the country through education, community involvement, research, and culturally relevant strategies.  The resolution currently has 18 co-sponsors. 
 
The Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program will be hosting a press conference with Dr. Releford at FoundCare Community Health Center in West Palm Beach on Friday, August 27, 2010.  FoundCare provides comprehensive medical care regardless of a person’s ability to pay and accepts a variety of insurance plans, including Medicaid, Medicare, and Health Care District programs.  Family practice, pediatrics, and infectious disease providers are ready to offer preventative health care services and welcome patients to establish FoundCare as their health care home.  Services are provided by bi-lingual staff.



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