Men are known to have poor health seeking behaviours both anecdotally and by various studies. It is also evident that social ills have shown males at the receiving end of trauma, poor health and educational opportunities.
For this, and other reasons, including the correspondence with mortality data which indicate that males are more likely to die from most major causes of death including coronary heart disease, cancer, motor vehicle accidents and self harm; the Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA) initiated an annual men’s only forum.
Coordinated by the Nurse Practitioners of the SRHA, the forum focused on education, screening and general care of males in order to improve their health and well-being.
The third staging was held on the grounds of the Old Police Station in May Pen, Clarendon on Thursday, November 28, under the theme, “Impacting healthcare one Male at a Time”, and saw more than 200 men receiving free health care.
The men accessed prostate testing and exam, dental care, blood pressure and blood sugar tests, HIV/STI tests, Body Mass Index (BMI) checks, foot care and nutritional education. They were also educated in areas of good mental health, prostate health, preventing chronic diseases, managing stress and sex education.
Parish Manager for the Clarendon Health Services, Joseph Grant said the men’s only forum was developed with the objective to impact men directly, because they do not readily seek health care as women.
“Research shows that if men take better care of their health, their families will be better cared for and, by extension, the environment and the society will be taken care of. We want to bring it to the men’s understanding that they must take responsibility for their health. Men are not good health care seekers and we want them to take better care for their health so we try different strategies to take health care directly to them. This is a regional effort and each year the event is hosted in the parishes of Manchester, St. Elizabeth and Clarendon by the SRHA Nurse Practitioners” Mr. Grant explained.
Mr. Grant encouraged the men to do their regular screenings, eat healthy and participate in daily physical activity.