The Power of Prevention “Community Mobile Health Tour”
What is the “Community Mobile Health Tour?”
The Power of Prevention-Community Mobile Health Tour initiative is a successful community and faith–based initiative, designed to empower at risk communities with access to health education, health and social support systems and services, to promote wellness and reduce risk factors for chronic disease. We take our messages of prevention, health and wellness to diverse, economically challenged communities, utilizing the community Church as our major platform. We engage local organizations and establish partnerships and collaborations with community health and social support providers in major metropolitan cities. The “Community Mobile Health Tour” will mark Prevention Partners, Inc. and our sister organization Health Connections, 10th year collaborating within communities to promote prevention, better disease management and self-care and improved access to services, as a means to address and ultimately reduce health disparities.
The Community Mobile Health Tour program services and community partners, collaborate together to address community barriers to healthy living. Our projects address risk factors, which negatively impact the health and wellbeing of underserved populations. We select and engage communities and faith-based groups to participate in our initiatives utilizing State Health Indices data. This data supports the identification of economically disadvantaged populations, who are at a greater risk for chronic diseases; cancer, diabetes, heart disease, child and adult obesity. We also actively recruit communities with higher percentages of elderly populations to participate. These unique characteristics and challenges assist participants to benefit greatly from the Community Mobile Health Tour initiative.
Community Characteristics Contributing to Health Disparities
The following lists some common factors, which contribute to chronic disease and illness.
- Limited access to high quality, comprehensive healthcare services
- Limited access to Culturally Competent Health and Wellness Education, Treatment and Services
- Lack of awareness of local services
- Mistrust of the health care system
- Limited diversity of ethnic minority employees in medical and social service agencies
- Limited awareness of the relationship between lifestyles habits which contribute to disease and poor health
- Denial/Ignore early warning signals of chronic disease
- Delay seeking care until medical condition is an emergency situation that is more difficult to treat
- High Cost of Nutritious Food (“Fast Food” cheaper fruits/vegetables, Poor School Lunch programs
- High Cost and Limited Access to Recreational Activities and facilities
- Lack of Time & Lack of Motivation
- Cultural differences regarding accessing health care and care for ill and dying family members
Our hope is to engage in future University community base participatory research and practice partnerships, to offer our experience and knowledge to support and evaluate tested interventions, designed to increase the use of innovative health care education and delivery systems services, that are cost-effective and culturally competent.
Why the Community Church?
The community Church is a respected, trusted entity within the community. Prevention Partners, Inc. has a successful history and respectful relationships with large Church denominations in major US Cities and with national Clergy Coalition groups. The community Church plays an important role in underserved communities. The Church is a “safe haven” for community recreational activities, provides motivational support systems, and represents a place for improved health literacy and positive change. The Church Pastor is viewed as a trusted community leader, with significant influence in motivating congregations, in areas that go far beyond the spiritual, to include health & wellness. The Church has a captive audience for our health initiatives. Congregations continue to grow due to our depressed economy. The Community Church has a built-in “client base”, which further supports program sustainability.
The initiative has the proven potential to reach and positively impact the health and wellbeing of thousands of Church members and community residents in each city. The tour includes a community Media Outreach Campaign, which promotes and directs individuals to the events. Media partnerships expands our reach to thousands via radio interviews and local promotions, advertisements in Church bulletins, and websites posting, and expands our health messaging reach for those who cannot attend the events. Corporate and community sponsors have greater access to the community to educate on their products and services. Church members and participants receive special announcements and information on community providers and sponsors services during events.