Community-based Healthcare Outreach Focuses on Diabetes Management to Reduce Complications Among African American Men

October 22, 2009 – San Diego, California — Entra Health Systems, an international applied healthcare technology company today announced support for the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program in their mission to increase public awareness of diabetes and its complications through early detection, information dissemination, and referral to appropriate medical resources. Entra Health will supply the program with the new MyGlucoHealth blood glucose meter and test strips for its upcoming one-day screenings in Los Angeles.

The Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program is offering free diabetes and blood pressure screenings to African American men at more than 100 black-owned barbershops throughout the Los Angeles region. The screenings will take place on Saturday, November 7, 2009 from 10 am to 4 pm. For addresses of participating barbershops, visit www.blackbarbershop.org.

“We support the vision of Dr. Releford and the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program to extend diabetic care and monitoring to underserved populations across the U.S.,” said Richard Strobridge, Chief Executive Officer of Entra Health Systems. “We believe that MyGlucoHealth technology can significantly improve a patient’s ability to understand their disease and take personal steps to make diet, and lifestyle changes that can reduce the complications of this illness. Our work with Dr. Releford can make a real difference in the lives of the men who participate in these important screenings.”

Founded in 2007 by Dr. Bill J. Releford, D.P.M. of Inglewood, California, the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program addresses healthcare disparities among African Americans. Dr. Releford is a podiatric surgeon who specializes in diabetic limb salvage to help reduce the extraordinary high number of diabetes-related amputations in high-risk populations. The mission of the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program is to empower African American men to better understand diabetes and hypertension and to prevent its development and complications.

Entra Health will support the barbershop-based screening clinics by providing the MyGlucoHealth blood glucose meter along with test strips and free access to online patient upload accounts and the Physician’s Portal for clinician monitoring. The MyGlucoHealth meter connects to the Internet using a personal computer to manage testing information and communicate results to the MyGlucoHealth Network Portal.

About the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program

The Diabetic Amputation Prevention Foundation’s Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program, is sponsored in part by a grant from The Center for Disease and Control and in collaboration with Charles Drew University, UCLA and Congresswoman Maxine Waters will expand on its successful effort that has already visited 23 cities and screened over 7500 men across the United States.

The Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program is the first initiative of its kind to address exclusively healthcare disparities in African American men on a national level. While medical advances and milestones benefit the general U.S. population, African American men experience the lowest life expectancy rate of any segment in American society. Undetected cardiovascular disease is contributory to disproportionate mortality and morbidity among African American men. Forty percent (40%) of African American men die prematurely from cardiovascular disease as compared to 21% of white men. Prostate cancer, yet another major contributor to disparate morbidity and mortality among African American, kills African American men at twice the rate of any other racial/ethnic group. Consequently, black men experience far worse health conditions than any other racial group in America. There are a number of reasons for this. They include racial discrimination; a lack of affordable health services; poor health education, cultural barriers; poverty, employment that does not carry health insurance; insufficient medical and social services catering to black men.

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