Community Engagement

AMPHS Offers Memory Screenings and CPR Demonstrations this Summer

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We are delighted to announce that AMPHS has been invited to participate in a number of screening events this summer! In partnership with the Chinese-American Planning Council, Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, and CAIPA (Chinese-American Independent Practice Association), AMPHS will help increase awareness among seniors of dementia risk and to enhance community preparedness.

Please contact Ravi Joshi, our Chief Operating Officer, at ravi.joshi@amphsonline.org if you would like to schedule demonstrations and screenings at your organization.

We also offer group certification course. Please contact faculty.resources@amphsonline.org if you are interested!

 

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Join us for our May events!

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AMPHS In-House Health Screening

When: Saturday, May 10th  |  11PM – 5PM

Where: 5306 Third Avenue, 2nd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Screening Services: Blood Pressure, Mammograms, Vision Testing, Dementia Screening, BMI Screening, Prescription Assistance, Health Insurance Assistance, Free/Low-cost Corrective Lenses, Health Education Material, Lifestyle Counseling, and More!

For appointments: call (212) 256-9036

 

Assemblyman Felix Ortiz Sunset Park Annual Health Fair

When: Saturday, 5/17/2014  |  12pm – 3pm

Where: Sunset Park Recreation Center, 43rd Street and 7th Avenue

Screening Services: Memory Screenings, CPR Demonstrations  

Walk-ins welcome; no appointment needed

 

Cholesterol Nutrition Workshop

When:Friday, 5/30/2014  |  10:30am – 11:30am

Where: United Sunset Senior Center, 475 53rd Street, 3rd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Join us for Women’s Health Month!

pink ribbonAMPHS offers a host of health screening facilities for women in Brooklyn. These include a physical exam, screenings for blood pressure, heart abnormalities, vision, memory and sexually transmitted diseases. In collaboration with Project Renewal and Latino Commission on AIDS, we will also be offering free mammograms, HIV, and Hepatitis C screenings this month at our monthly in-house screening event on May 10, 2014 between 1pm and 5pm.

Please be on the lookout for our newsletters for more screenings; and do not hesitate to contact us at clinical.services@amphsonline.org or (212) 256-9036 to schedule a health screening at your institution!

 

Women health

 

Join us for our April In-House Screening Event!

Clinical Volunteer Alice Bonner, RN provides BMI assessment

Clinical Volunteer Alice Bonner, RN provides BMI assessment

When: Saturday, April 19 from 1pm – 5pm

Where: AMPHS Headquarters, 5306 Third Avenue, 2nd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11220 (between 53rd and 54th Streets)

Who: Walk-ins welcome; appointments preferred for priority service. Appointments can be scheduled by calling: (212) 256-9036

What: AMPHS will be offering free health screenings for BMI, blood pressure, vision, and memory along with healthy lifestyle counseling and information about health insurance, prescription assistance, and vision assistance. HIV and Hep C screenings will be provided by the Latino AIDS Society. Resources related to a healthy lifestyle will be distributed.

AMPHS Welcomes New Volunteers Aboard

AMPHS is pleased to announce four new volunteers. We would like to thank them for dedicating their time and expertise to the health of the Sunset Park community. Please join us in welcoming them aboard!

sariceSarice Greenstein, Spanish Translator 

Sarice will be interpreting on behalf of clients at screenings and education events and assisting with a number of translation projects at AMPHS. Sarice has lived in Texas for the past three years, but as a native (upstate) New Yorker, is happy to be back home. In Texas, she was involved in HIV prevention work, which inspired her passion for public health, and she is excited to start her Master’s program in Public Health next year. “For many years, I have had the pleasure of helping people understand each other across linguistic boundaries in Chile, Costa Rica, Panama, Texas and Connecticut. I’m excited to be a part of the work AMPHS is doing in Sunset Park, and hope to be an important part of creating a healthier community.”

Alex DucettAlex Ducett, Development Associate 

Alex will help coordinate fundraising efforts and secure funds. She graduated from the University of Chicago in December 2013 with a B.A. in East Asian Languages and Civilizations and in Human Rights. She moved to New York soon after, and is currently looking to find a position at a human rights-focused non-profit or at a cultural institution or university. She is excited to work with AMPHS to gain experience in non-profit development and for the opportunity to contribute to a human rights-based organization working in the US.

clarkClark Aycock, Coordinator of Social Communications 

Clark will be responsible for directing all online outreach efforts, including social media, press releases and the monthly newsletter. Originally from North Carolina, he graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill and then moved to New York in 1993 to work in the publishing industry. Since then, he has worked on, among other things, textbooks, magazines, children’s products and a pop culture website for teens. Clark’s interest in AMPHS’s mission was driven by his volunteer work with English-language discussion groups with recent immigrants. He loves the diversity of NYC, and Brooklyn especially, and knows that’s driven by immigration. He likes good pizza, and lives with his wife in Ditmas Park.

Nikki Gurley, Community Research and Outreach Associate

In her capacity as Community Research & Outreach Associate, Nikki will  serve as a liaison to create and sustain community partnerships and organize community health events. She will also provide assistance and support in data entry and analysis to help further AMPHS’ public health research efforts.

Volunteer Spotlight: Dennis Zheng, Chinese Translator

dennis picMost people who encounter us are surprised when they hear that AMPHS is a completely volunteer-run organization, and we thank our outstanding volunteers for their time, effort and, most of all, their unwavering devotion to our mission. For this issue of the newsletter, we decided to interview one of our volunteers, Dennis Zheng. He has been volunteering as a Chinese translator since November 2013, and has been an invaluable asset to AMPHS.

“I believe that AMPHS is a trusted resource that the community of Sunset Park relies on for their health concerns and questions.”

What do you do outside of AMPHS?

I work for Healthfirst, an organization that provides free and low-cost health insurance plans to eligible adults, children, families, and seniors living in New York State, as a field interpreter. I travel within the five boroughs to interpret for senior members in their semi-annual reassessments. The reassessment is important for them to make sure that their health care service is up to date and appropriate to their needs. Under the managed long-term care program, I have worked closely with the elderly, Chinese-speaking population of NYC. My role is to enable members to speak up for their needs and receive the quality of care they deserve.

Why did you choose to volunteer with AMPHS?

After I started working in the healthcare field, I felt like I was put in the frontline interacting with members. I understood that accessing healthcare is already hard, and the language barrier makes it even harder. The majority of the elderly population is uneducated, and many suffer from forgetfulness. Elderly people who live on their own are vulnerable, and unable to speak up for themselves. I know there is a great need in the Chinese community to receive the most basic and appropriate health care, so I wanted to use my language skills to fill in the gap. AMPHS’ values, vision, and mission attracted me to be a part of their team and their work. I do believe that AMPHS is a trusted resource that the community of Sunset Park relies on for their health concerns and questions.

Could you share a story with a community member that stands out in your memory?

I remember one particular community member whom I never met in person, but spoke to many times over the phone. He was calling to find out more about our vision assistance program, and I helped him apply for prescription lens. Because of his long working hours, he couldn’t visit AMPHS’ open house screening. Sheila Raj, AMPHS’ social worker, and I tried to schedule a trip to the optician for him, but we couldn’t coordinate it. A few weeks passed and I was upset because it seemed as though he would never have a chance to receive an eye exam or get glasses. To my surprise, he showed up on a Saturday at the AMPHS offices and finally got the care he deserved. I was very touched to see AMPHS’s direct impact on community members.

Seeking Organizations Interested in Sharing Office Space

lobbyAre you looking to grow your business, not-for-profit organization or socially-driven venture and develop its capacity?

Do you need an affordable and reliable location to carry out your programming and further your impact?

AMPHS is now offering a social impact-driven office space use program for like-minded nonprofits and social enterprises. The AMPHS office is in a 1,200 square foot commercial building and includes a first floor entrance hall; second floor reception lobby; two work rooms with private desks, cubicles, workstations, computers; a large multi-purpose conference room seating up to 8 people with extra chairs for up to 20 and full AV capabilities; full pantry with refrigerator, microwave, and coffee makers; and bathroom. There is also a small library on-site with resources for fundraising, grant-writing, social media leverage strategies, health & wellness resources, etc. open for community use.

IMG-20120908-00085The office is entirely furnished – you can just come in, sit down, and get to work. Work areas include a private work room, a larger work room with a beautiful skylight, a large 2-person cubicle and two individual workstations accommodating up to 4 work areas (but can sit more than just 4), plus the conference room. All are furnished with elegant desk and floor lamps, mahogany pedestal desks and padded work chairs. The conference room includes a 32″ TV, DVD and VCR player, projector screen and its own cappuccino machine and mugs. There are whiteboards, markers and erasers around the office; portable whiteboards, easels and projector screens for presentations; and a number of other resources available for occupants.

The AMPHS office is centrally located in Sunset Park, one of the most diverse neighborhoods in NYC and about 20 minutes away from Manhattan, Queens, and other areas in Brooklyn. We are also conveniently located one block from the train station and the bus stop, two blocks away from Lutheran Medical Center, and a couple blocks from local community centers and organizations, the public library, council offices, etc.

We are looking to share the use of this entirely furnished, well-kept, and resourceful office space for $1,250 a month, plus your percentage of utilities. You will have full access and use of the rooms mentioned above during weekdays Mondays to Fridays, including the front reception area and lobby. We are willing to work with organizations to develop an agreement that is suitable to both parties. Please contact hewett.chiu@amphsonline.org if you are interested.

IMG-20120908-00071conference roomroom

Schedule a Health Event with AMPHS at Your Center!

screening 3Community organizations are invited to schedule health events with us this spring. Here at AMPHS, we make our biggest impact by providing individuals the opportunity to interact with our clinicians and social workers as a group and one-on-one. While we hold monthly in-house screening events, much of our work takes place outside of our facilities with our community partners.

Organizations can choose among the following services that AMPHS routinely offers:

Health screenings, including BMI, blood pressure, vision, memory, HIV and hepatitis C screenings.

Health workshops related to disease, health and wellness, conducted in three languages (English, Spanish, Chinese).

Lifestyle plan and social service counseling, where clinical volunteers and social work staff will sit down with community members to evaluate and their lifestyle behaviors and social situations and provide the best lifestyle plan and health insurance, prescription, and vision assistance options.

screeningHealth-related services are desperately needed in communities like Sunset Park, where many people have not seen a healthcare professional in years. In addition, many are unwilling to see a doctor because they haven’t seen one in years, and are afraid of costs that might incur or potential deportation if they are undocumented. Issues like mental health are highly stigmatized and people are not motivated to attend counseling sessions or workshops. To help deal with some of these issues, AMPHS offers its services in a safe, comfortable environment. AMPHS is blind to identification and insurance status and offers its services to the community at large, regardless of whether or not community members can afford them.

Mon Yuck Yu, AMPHS’ Executive Vice President and Chief of Staff, has volunteered at several such events at hewett w CMUnited Sunset Senior Citizens Center in Brooklyn. Yu believes that “it is incredible the amount of impact we are able to make. Although many of the seniors have health insurance (like Medicare due to their age), there are many who fall through the gaps, and are unable to afford certain procedures or whose primary care physicians don’t communicate with them in the right ways. Our counseling has really helped them discover the path to better health. Some people would come up to us after the workshops to ask questions that don’t even get answered by a regular physician. For example, one person from a previous screening had extremely low blood pressure and after speaking with one of our clinical volunteers, was told that he needed to simply drink more water to alleviate his condition, which his doctor did not inform him about because he did not look close enough at his diet and lifestyle behaviors…Clinical Staff Member Takes BPin fact, many people have trouble believing that we are offering all of these services for free.”

Kathleen Tam, who has served as the Chinese translator for a number of health screenings recalls: “Older community members are eager to participate in the health education sessions. They usually gather and listen to us. I think they learn something new about how to stay healthy every time we go in. They also take our handouts home and share with their family and friends.”

Community members who attend screening and healthcare-related workshops will return to AMPHS for longer follow-up care and to seek additional social services. While AMPHS does not substitute a regular provider, it attempts to be the intermediary providing community members with the knowledge of their health risk factors, prevention methods, and resources for health access.

Volunteer Spotlight: Tess Aldrich, Clinical Volunteer

“By reaching out to communities and individuals who are otherwise marginalized from ‘mainstream’ medical care..it feels great to be able to spend time really talking with people.”

IMG_3531As a public service organization serving a diverse ethnic community, AMPHS has a similarly diverse volunteer team operating its programs behind the scenes. This month, we had the opportunity to sit down with one of our clinical volunteers, Tess Aldrich to take a look at the work that she does both inside and outside of AMPHS.

Tess is an Adult and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner with a background in public health research.  Prior to becoming an NP, she worked at the Population Council in Mexico City and later at Gynuity Health Projects on studies relating to cervical cancer screening and management, family planning, and maternal mortality prevention.  After earning her MSN at the Yale School of Nursing, she worked for two years in adult primary care at a federally-qualified community health center based in Harlem. She currently works at the NYU Student Health Center in Women’s Health Services.

What do you do outside of AMPHS?

I work as a Nurse Practitioner at the NYU Student Health Center, primarily in women’s health, managing a variety of gynecologic and primarily care conditions. Because the patient population is, for the most part, comprised of young, healthy individuals, we do a lot of preventive care and education, which I greatly enjoy. There are also opportunities for teaching and mentorship; I precept a Nurse Practitioner (NP) student each semester and recently gave a talk to nursing students on heart disease in women.

Why did you choose to volunteer at AMPHS?

My fist job as an NP was at a community health center in Harlem, where I worked in adult primary care. In this setting, patients presented with a range of chronic health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, and mental illness. We also saw a number of uninsured individuals, many of whom had not accessed medical care in years. While it was very challenging, I greatly enjoyed this work and wanted to maintain a connection with community health — specifically related to New York’s immigrant population. When I learned about AMPHS and its mission, it sounded like a wonderful opportunity to stay involved.

DSC_0726What has your experience been your experience as a clinical volunteer thus far?

I’ve had a great experience with AMPHS so far. I’ve particularly enjoyed the community events I participated in this past summer, and was also really impressed with the energy and expertise of the summer interns I met during these activities. The in-house screenings have also been a wonderful opportunity to meet community members I otherwise probably wouldn’t have contact with and to hear about their health concerns. People who attend these screenings range from those who have not seen a health care provider in years (and perhaps don’t know about many resources available to them) to those who are well-informed and very much linked in with health care services — but perhaps want to learn more about a specific health topic.

From a public health perspective, I think one of the biggest challenges that AMPHS has highlighted is that of accessing healthy food options (e.g. fresh, affordable produce) and safe spaces to exercise. At one community event last summer, it was really motivating to see the many participants — young and old alike (including some AMPHS volunteers) — participating in Tai Chi and Zumba classes together. One community group had also set up a cooking station to demonstrate healthy, easy recipes.

How has AMPHS impacted you?

By reaching out to communities and individuals who are otherwise marginalized from “mainstream” medical care, I’m constantly reminded of both how resourceful people are in managing their own health and that of their families, as well as how stressful it can be to live in a city like New York when English is not your first language, and you perhaps don’t feel entirely connected to the myriad communities and services around you. Additionally, while the in-house screenings can get quite busy depending on the number of community members who show up, it’s great to be able to spend time really talking with people and answering questions. As an NP, as much as we strive to give patients adequate time in busy medical practices, the reality is that the visit often ends up feeling quite rushed – which is a constant challenge for both patients and providers.

DSC_5559Do you have any suggestions for someone interested in a career in the healthcare field?

I do think being exposed early on to as many clinical settings and populations as possible can be critical; not only does this exposure build your skill set and teach the importance of adaptability, but I think it also impresses upon providers the importance of listening to patients and learning from them. I also think for someone just starting out, the importance of good mentorship cannot be stressed enough. As health care providers, we also learn so much from each other. This learning process is important throughout a career but especially valuable in the beginning.

Where do you see yourself in AMPHS in the future?

I think one of the most important aspects of AMPHS’ work is that of directing community members to medical and public health resources available to them. With the Affordable Care Act, hopefully many people who otherwise did not access medical and preventive health care will to do so now; AMPHS is well-situated to act as a liaison between individuals and these services. I also think the counseling/education piece that AMPHS provides (which sometimes falls through the cracks in busy health care settings) is incredibly important.

AMPHS Collaborates with Center for Family Life at Sunset Park High School to Offer Internship Placements

interns wantedThe Academy of Medical and Public Health Services is pleased to announce its collaboration with the Center for Family Life at Sunset Park High School to offer high school students job-training opportunities through term-long internships as a part of its 12th grade internship program. The Center for Family Life (CFL) is a family and social services based organization with its roots deep in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Its mission is to “promote positive outcomes for children, adults and families in Sunset Park through the provision of a comprehensive range of neighborhood-based family and social services.” By partnering with community centers, CFL facilitates access to opportunities that encourages students to develop into confident, capable adults.

AMPHS will be selecting 1-2 student interns to join its program from the CFL Internship Fair on February 27th, 2014. Student interns will have the opportunity to assist with coordinating AMPHS’ health activities and engaging the Sunset Park community through active outreach to local residents and organizations. They will also have the opportunity to participate in AMPHS health events throughout the month. This will be a significant learning opportunity for young adults with aspiring careers in public health, medicine, and nonprofits.

For more information on CFL, visit

http://sco.org/programs/center-for-family-life/