Dr. Betty PriceLady Evelyn PerkinsFor the first time ever in Los Angeles history, 30 churches of various denominations and sizes will open their doors to their congregations as well as community residents for medical screenings during the inaugural First Ladies Health Day.The Walgreens-sponsored screenings and health specific seminars will take place on Sunday, May 20, from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m., based on the individual churches worship schedules.
On-site screenings will include HIV/AIDS, blood pressure, Hepatitis C, depression, glucose, cholesterol, information on Alzheimer's disease, cancer and CPR techniques. All tests will be free to participants and provided by local healthcare personnel.
Founding board members of the First Ladies Health Initiative are Lady Denise Hunter of First A.M.E. Church, Lady Evelyn Perkins of True Friendship M.B. Church, Dr. Betty Price of Crenshaw Christian Center and Lady Debra Williams of McCoy Baptist Church."We are indeed grateful and thankful for this unique service, especially at this time when so many are lacking insurance protection for their physical being," said Lady Perkins. "It will be a great help to our community because even those who do have health insurance don't go to the doctor. But when it's brought to where you are, most people are more likely to seek life-saving attention."
Dr. Price, who founded a cancer support group at Crenshaw Christian Center, added, "Everyone should take advantage of this awesome opportunity. It may just help save your life."
Organizations and individuals who will perform the screenings include experts from Walgreens Pharmacists, HealthCare Partners, American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, City of Hope, the Alzheimer's Association, Black AIDS Institute, the Minority AIDS Project, the Los Angeles Fire Department, and the Council of Black Nurses.
"As representatives of the Walgreens Company, we empower the ladies with the necessary tools and resources of the health care profession to create this substantive program that they can continue to build on year after year," said Tracey Alston, president of Danielle Ashley Group, the African-American agency for Walgreens.
John Gremer, Walgreens' director of community affairs, and the top executives of Walgreens are very committed to this self-sustaining program. "We knew this was a big idea. Needless to say, we are all very pleased with the magnitude of this program's growth," said Gremer.
"It has been a pleasure to work with the first ladies and to encourage their members and communities to get screened for these various illnesses, many of which are preventable," added Gremer.
For information and a list of participating churches, visit www.FirstLadiesHealth.com.