For a fourth consecutive year, The National Urban League and Walgreens are partnering to provide six free health screenings to Philadelphia residents in order to empower them as advocates of their own health and wellbeing. In honor of The National Urban League’s 100 years of service, this year’s educational health screening campaign will highlight the League’s Centennial “I Am Empowered” national service initiative, and will collaborate with Urban League affiliates to offer free health education and screening events to Philadelphia’s urban community while the bus is in town from May 27th – June 1st.
During its 42-week campaign, the National Urban League and Walgreens Wellness Tour will visit 30 cities across the country. The wellness campaign features a 40-foot health screening and education vehicle that offers free health screenings, including blood pressure, bone density, glucose and cholesterol levels, body mass index and waist circumference. These free services are valued at more than $140. There will also be educational materials distributed concerning each of the screenings as well as HIV/Aids awareness and prevention.
“National Urban League is pleased once again to join Walgreens in empowering urban communities through our fourth annual Wellness Tour,” said Marc H. Morial, President and CEO of the National Urban League. “Health screenings are essential to disease detection and prevention, especially in diverse communities plagued by lack of access to affordable health care. Our local programs and partnership with Walgreens through the Wellness Tour is part of an ongoing effort to help close the equality gaps that still exist concerning the health and wellness of the African-American community.”
Walgreens, the nation’s largest drugstore chain, and National Urban League, the oldest and largest community-based nonpartisan organization devoted to empowering underserved communities, partnered together for the wellness campaign to maximize the impact of their shared, long-term commitment to overcoming the barriers associated with receiving quality health services in urban areas. To date, the National Urban League and Walgreens Wellness Tour has administered almost a quarter million screenings.
“Walgreens continues to value our partnership with the NUL and is honored to celebrate NUL’s 100-year commitment to urban communities through our fourth annual health education and screening tour. We are working together to provide resources that allow people in urban communities access to free preventive care,” said John Gremer, Walgreens director of community affairs. “Our common goal is to provide healthy outcomes and help the people in communities who benefit most from these services.”
Residents in urban communities, particularly minorities, experience disproportionately higher rates of preventable disease. In a 2009 study, The New England Journal of Medicine found that blacks are impacted by higher rates of heart failure, and specifically:
Blacks suffer heart failure at a rate of 20 times higher than whites;
- One in 100 black men and women will develop heart failure before age 50; and
- Heart failure rates for blacks in their 30s and 40s are the same as whites in their 50s and 60s.
According to the National Diabetes Education Program:
- 10.4 percent of Hispanics/Latinos ages 20 years or older have diagnosed diabetes
- Among Hispanics/Latinos, diabetes prevalence rates are 8.2 percent for Cubans, 11.9 percent for Mexican Americans and 12.6 percent for Puerto Ricans
The screenings are recommended for adults aged 18 and older. Screening results are instantly provided, and participants are encouraged to visit a doctor or health care provider to discuss the results. Consumers can learn when a tour is scheduled to serve their community by calling toll free 1-866-484-TOUR (8687) or accessing a schedule online at www.walgreens.com/tour.