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September 13, 2004
Event champions men’s health
By cindy sanders
As America’s population ages, more men are learning the importance of regular health checkups. Prostate cancer killed more than 30,700 men in 2001, but if detected in its earliest stages, the survival rate is almost 100 percent. And heart disease, the leading cause of death in men, can be treated successfully with early detection (as former President Bill Clinton recently learned).
Metro Atlanta men can learn to improve their health at the third annual Community Health and Men’s Promotion Summit (CHAMPS) on Saturday, Sept. 18, sponsored in part by Crawford Long Hospital. Featuring the theme “It’s Time to Take Charge of Men’s Health!” the summit will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Atlanta Civic Center (395 Piedmont Ave.). It is designed to encourage men—who traditionally do not make health maintenance a priority—to address their health needs and make healthy lifestyle choices.
Men can get free screenings for prostate and colorectal cancer, hypertension, obesity, diabetes, vision and dental. Doctors and other health professionals also will check cholesterol levels and assess risks for heart problems. There will be informational exhibits, educational workshops, entertainment and refreshments.
“Although men are living longer today than in the previous century, many are still dying prematurely from preventable and treatable illnesses at an average age six years earlier than women,” said James Bennett, president of Midtown Urology and CHAMPS medical director. “We hope to raise awareness that men can take charge of their own health and live longer through disease prevention, early detection and treatment.”
The inaugural event in 2002 drew hundreds of men from metro Atlanta, and CHAMPS continued to grow in 2003, with more than 600 in attendance. While the event provides education and health screenings for all men, it specifically targets the medically underserved, who have limited access to health care and are at greater risk for developing certain health disorders.
“Events such as this,” Bennett said, “are vitally important for our community.”
CHAMPS is sponsored by a consortium of private and public entities, including Crawford Long; the American Cancer Society; Atlanta Medical Association; Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness; Georgia Commission on Men’s Health; Georgia Department of Human Resources-Men’s Health Initiative; Georgia Prostate Cancer Coalition; Midtown Urology; National Black Men’s Health Network; and United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta.
For more information, visit the CHAMPS website at www.champsga.org or www.emoryhealthcare.org.