Community Health Project

April Health Tip: Binge drinking

alcohol awareness

Photo Credit : CDC

The Centers for Disease Prevention wants to highlight the risks involved when women indulge in binge drinking. Binge drinking can be defined as consuming four or more drinks per occasion. (For men, it’s five or more drinks per occasion).

Binge drinking is dangerous for both men and women, but causes a disproportionate number of health and social problems for women. This pattern of drinking contributes to approximately 32 deaths per day in women! In a survey, women who binge drink reported that they indulge in risky behavior at least three times a month. This is not surprising, as excessive alcohol consumption leads to impaired judgment and decision making.

It is important to remember that no amount of alcohol is safe to drink while pregnant. There is no safe time to drink, and no safe kind of alcohol to drink. 

For more information, visit  http://www.cdc.gov/features/alcoholawareness/

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.

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/


Announcing December Health Screening Events! Get Screened Today.

Health ScreeningThe Academy of Medical and Public Health Services (AMPHS) invites you to attend our December health screening events. Appointments are preferred for all in-house screenings. Make sure you reserve your spot well in advance!

We will be offering memory screenings, vision screenings, HIV and Hep C screenings, and more!

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Long Island University Community Health Fair

When: Wednesday, 12/4/2013 from 10am to 4pm

Where: Long Island University, 1 University Plaza, Brooklyn, NY 11217

No appointment needed; walk-ins welcome.

AMPHS will be offering free memory screening services in collaboration with Long Island University and Affinity Health Plan. In addition, AMPHS has partnered with Turning Point Outreach Center for Hepatitis C (Hep C) and HIV testing services during the event.

A memory screening is an evaluation tool that checks your memory and cognitive skills. It does not diagnose dementia, but indicates whether additional follow-up with a primary care physician is required. During a memory screening, a clinician may ask you to answer a series of questions or perform a series of tasks to test your cognitive abilities, memory, and language skills.

United Sunset Senior Center Vision Screening and Workshop

When: Friday, 12/6/2013 from 10:30am to 1:30pm

Where: United Sunset Senior Center, 475 53rd Street, 3rd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11220-2712

No appointment needed; walk-ins welcome.

AMPHS will be partnering with the United Sunset Senior Citizens Center to offer vision screenings and education to seniors at the center. Over a course of these three years, AMPHS has been delighted to be of service to over 700 community members by providing them with vision services; this includes professional eye examinations and free prescription glasses. Our clinical volunteers administer the Snellen eye check, and if they find that a community member is in need of prescription glasses, they are assisted and walked through the procedure of applying for professional eye exams through the VisionUSA service and prescription glasses through the New Eyes for the Needy program.

To educate community members about vision health, AMPHS has organized an educational workshop on vision health. The workshop will educate community members on different eye conditions that affect the elderly population and what can be done to mitigate the effects of eye degeneration, such as paying attention to lifestyle behaviors and nutritional intake.

4th Annual Holiday Extravaganza

When: Saturday, 12/7/2013 from 10:00am to 5:00pm

Where: New Lots Avenue between Cleavand & Hegeman

No appointment needed; walk-ins welcome.

On Saturday, December 7th, AMPHS will partner with Affinity Health Plan and Umoja Events to celebrate their 4th annual Holiday Extravaganza and Tree lighting event in East NY, Brooklyn. AMPHS will offer blood pressure, memory screenings, and heart and lung health screenings along with health counseling to improve their general health conditions.

Come with your little ones, as they are bound to enjoy the tree lighting ceremony and gift distribution!

December HIV/AIDS Awareness Screening Event

When: Saturday, 12/14/2013 from 11:00am to 5:00pm

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

Screenings can be scheduled by calling: (212) 256-9036

To recognize December as HIV/AIDS Awareness Month, AMPHS is offering educational resources related to HIV/AIDS and STDs.  In addition to providing HIV/AIDS screenings, AMPHS has also partnered with Project Renewal to provide mammograms and with the Latino AIDS society for Hepatitis C screenings. AMPHS clinical volunteers and social workers will also be offering the following services:

  • BMI screening
  • Blood pressure screening
  • Visual acuity testing
  • Memory screenings
  • Heart rate and respiration rate exam
  • SpO2 measurement (SpO2 is a measure of oxygen content in blood)
  • Oculomotor function
  • EKG testing
  • Healthy Lifestyle Counseling
  • Information about health insurance
  • Vision assistance program enrollment
  • Prescription assistance

For more information on memory screening, visit

http://www.nationalmemoryscreening.org/memory-screening-who-should-be-screened.php

For more information on Turning Point Outreach Center, visit

http://turningpointbrooklyn.org/about-us/programs-services/the-outreach-center/

For more information on vision screening, visit

http://www.new-eyes.org/

http://www.aoafoundation.org/vision-usa/

AMPHS Builds Hope Among Volunteers and the Community

DSC_0226One of the ways AMPHS strives to make an impact on the community is through regular health screenings. AMPHS believes that access to healthcare should be a right to everyone irrespective of their insurance and economic status, and not a privilege. AMPHS has organized and hosted a number of health screening services since August in the Brooklyn area – in addition to routine health screenings, AMPHS has organized breast cancer screenings and screenings for Alzheimer’s disease. In the past few months alone, AMPHS was able to impact the lives of over 90 community members.

AMPHS touches the life of community members on a regular basis. One regular community member, Gail Rivers, says that she found out about AMPHS when she came to the headquarters and was pleasantly surprised to find out that all the health services we offered were free. “AMPHS provides a warm and welcoming feeling to its clients. It is very unlike going to a regular doctor for a checkup. I do not have health insurance, and it is good to know that there is someone for you when you need them.”

A resident of the Sunset Park area, Gail is certain that she will recommend AMPHS to her friends and family members. “The clinical volunteers and especially Mon Yuck, the Chief of Staff at AMPHS – go the extra mile to make sure community members understand their options and get the help needed.”

Our health screenings have touched the lives of our volunteers as well.

Workshop on Breast Self-Exams and Mammograms at Turning Point Staff Health Day with Alice Bonner, RN

Workshop on Breast Self-Exams and Mammograms at Turning Point Staff Health Day with Alice Bonner, RN

Coordinator of Community Health Research Pensri Ho served as an event volunteer for the Turning Point Outreach Center Staff Health Day that was held on October 25th. The event was held in collaboration with Turning Point to encourage health awareness among their community. To Pensri, this event was unusual because this was the first time community members scheduled an appointment and completed the AMPHS health survey online. This enabled AMPHS to screen more community members than we usually would have. Pensri recalls that one middle-aged community member was so touched by the clinical volunteer’s bedside manner that she wanted him to be her primary care physician. All the community members mentioned that they were extremely impressed with the thoroughness of how medical history was taken, the time that was devoted to them on a personal level and the advice they received from the clinical volunteers.

President & CEO Hewett Chiu served as the clinical volunteer for the Breast Cancer Awareness Screening Event on October 19th, AMPHS’ monthly in-house health screening. This event was focused on community members learning more about breast cancer, as well as the fact that despite popular belief, men can be affected by breast cancer too. There was an equal mix of community members returning for follow up care and regular check-ins and new community members coming to access healthcare for the first time. Community members were also given personalized coaching sessions, resources, and educational materials for breast cancer susceptibility and prevention, and were urged to made follow up appointments for future mammogram screenings in December.  According to Hewett, it is heartwarming to hear the community members share their stories and learn more about the incredible suffering they have to live through every day.

Screening at Pentecostal Church El Camino with Hewett Chiu

Screening at Pentecostal Church El Camino with Hewett Chiu

Talking about one particular incident, Hewett recalls: “an elderly gentlemen, who is a regular AMPHS member, came in and complained of terrible pain in his limbs and minor respiratory distress. Upon further inspection, his left foot was greatly swollen, a condition which was suggestive of a dire heart condition. We immediately performed a focused screening, then created a plan and gave him directions for seeking follow up care and treatment. Throughout the whole process, we educated him on what might be happening, what he should do, and what everything we’re doing means. He saw how much we cared for him and really took our advice to heart. Because of our quick intervention, when we called to check out how he was doing a few days later, he reported that he was feeling much better than he had in many weeks, and we may have possibly prevented a terrible medical emergency from occurring.”

Chief of Staff Mon Yuck Yu also served as a clinical volunteer for United Sunset Senior Health Center Alzheimer’s Screening on Friday, Sept 13th. AMPHS first provided a 45-minute workshop to the seniors at United Sunset on dementia and its origins, effects, methods of prevention, and the importance of getting tested.  District 51 Assemblyman Felix Ortiz also made a presence at the event. Ortiz expressed how grateful he was that AMPHS was able to provide memory screening services, telling the story of his grandmother’s affliction with the disease in the past and encouraging the seniors to get screened. For Mon Yuck, it is evident that AMPHS fills an important gap in the lives of numerous community members. “Many community members who were at risk for dementia would be living their everyday lives without knowing or without understanding how to prevent the condition. Many think that it is only important to either eat well or stay active, but they are not aware that there are other health measures they should be taking such as constantly engaging in social and cognitively-stimulating activities.”

AMPHS’ services continue to impact the lives of both its community members and its volunteers. AMPHS is grateful that is has had the opportunity to engage in over 10 screening events in the past 3 months and change the lives of so many individuals. We would like to thank our partners New York City Housing Authority, Affinity Health Plan, Interfaith Medical Center, Turning Point Outreach Center, Pentecostal Church El Camino, United Sunset Senior Center, SUNY Brooklyn Educational Opportunity Center, Millennium Development Senior Center, and Latino Commission on AIDS for making these events possible. We look forward to bring additional health events to community members in the coming year.

It’s Heart Health Month! Tips to maintain a healthy heart

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWhat can you do to get a better heart?

1) Get screened!  You never know what conditions you may have if don’t find out. Many cardiovascular conditions are asymptomatic (you can’t really tell you have them).  Some screenings to consider: Blood Pressure, BMI, Cholesterol, and if you know you have a heart condition, an EKG or Stress EKG screening. Call us at (212) 256-9036 to schedule a screening appointment.

2) Get Trained!  You don’t want to be stuck figuring out what to do when an emergency strikes. Learn how to appropriately respond to heart attacks and other medical emergencies. You can truly save the life of a loved one one day. At a minimum, consider CPR/AED and First Aid trainings. AMPHS offers trainings in English, Spanish, and Chinese. Register today!

3) Know the Signs!  Know what the signs are for heart attacks so when it happens to you, you can take action. This includes pain in the center of the chest spreading up to the jaw, shoulders, down the arms, and even down to your abdomen; shortness of breath; dizziness; profuse sweating; and a feeling of doom.  If you ever have any of these feelings, don’t ignore them!  Take them seriously and call 9-1-1.  If you have an aspirin handy, take one and chew it while waiting for EMS.  If you are on nitroglycerin, take it according to your doctor’s recommendations. This is really serious, and can mean the difference between life and death!

If you follow these three steps, you are on your way to better heart health.

Lending a Helping Hand, One Community Member at a Time

AMPHS is pleased to announce that over the course of the past three months, it has worked with ten community partners to hold and participate in twelve health awareness events and perform over 150 community health screenings. Screenings include cardiovascular screenings (blood pressure, heart rate, respiration rate, etc.), vision screenings, dementia screenings, and HIV testing. A number of community members have also participated in the AMPHS prescription, health insurance, and vision assistance programs.

Screening events have included in-house events at the AMPHS Headquarters and events sponsored by and held in collaboration with Affinity Health Plan, National Action Network, City Tech, Renaissance Men’s Residence, Offices of Assemblymembers Felix Ortiz and Annette Robinson, Shorefront Y, HealthFirst, Interfaith Medical Center, and Family Services Network of NY.

AMPHS is excited to continue partnerships with these organizations. Below are some highlights from recent summer events:

Renaissance Men’s Residence AMPHS Health Screening Event

The Renaissance Men’s Residence, a shelter for low-income male residents recently invited AMPHS to their location to perform health screenings for their residents and employees. The event, which took place between 12pm and 4pm on June 21st,  involved a full-scale AMPHS health screening that included screenings for vision, cardiovascular disease, and dementia. Other organizations, including Interfaith Medical Center and PSI were present to offer HIV testing and vaccinations. AMPHS volunteers, including Chief of Staff Mon Yuck Yu, President & CEO and Clinical Volunteer Hewett Chiu, Clinical Volunteer Alice Bonner, and summer interns Georgina Muri, Alexandra Lacqua, and Lisa Rennels, were present to distribute health materials, take health surveys, and perform clinical testing and counseling. AMPHS clinical volunteers Hewett Chiu and Alice Bonner performed 23 screenings and offered vision assistance for free/low-cost corrective lenses to 7 community members, making the event highly successful.

DSC_0054

Assemblymember Felix Ortiz Senior Health Day Event

AMPHS participated in NYS Assemblyman Felix W. Ortiz’s First Annual Senior Health & Educational Resource Day, sponsored by HealthFirst, on Saturday, June 22nd  at the Sunset Park Recreation Center on 43rd Street in Brooklyn. Approximately  ten community members took advantage of the free and confidential AMPHS health screening services and received blood pressure checks, memory screenings, and counseling on how to stay healthy from AMPHS’ attending clinical volunteer, Tess Aldrich. AMPHS also distributed educational flyers and materials health topics including diabetes, osteoporosis, and hypertension. Senior Health Day was a day for both seniors and families. There was music and instructors leading tai-chi and zumba sessions, in addition to a free shoulder massage station for all participants. Other vendors included Prudential, TD Bank, Walgreens, and Grow NYC. Earlier in May, AMPHS also participated in Councilman Feliz Ortiz’s Women’s Empowerment Event, where it offered free health screenings and distributed health education materials to women and families alike.

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See May 11, 2013 Felix Ortiz Women’s Empowerment Event, a set on Flickr.

June Men’s Health Month & July Hepatitis Month AMPHS Health Screenings

AMPHS holds health and wellness-themed in-house screenings at the AMPHS office the third Saturday of every month. During June and July, AMPHS celebrated Men’s Health Month and Hepatitis Awareness Month with in-house health screenings, where it offered comprehensive screenings that ranged from measuring blood pressure for cardiovascular disease to memory screenings for dementia to counseling and referrals. AMPHS was able to successfully conduct screenings for nine community members, each appointment lasting approximately 40 minutes, compared to the nationwide average of 21 minutes for a doctor’s visit. Eight of the nine community members did not have health insurance.

According to attending clinical staff Hewett Chiu, “our screenings are unique because we are able to spend a considerable amount of time with each community member to understand their problems. We do not ask for documentation or insurance, so community members feel comfortable disclosing their health information to us. During one of our screenings, for example, one community member told us about the distress that she was feeling because her husband was suffering from chest pain. We referred her to visit the Cumberland Diagnostic and Treatment Center, a HHC member which offers cheaper co-pay options to undocumented immigrants. They ultimately had to pay only $15 for their clinic visit. For another community member, we found out that he had considerably high blood pressure and recommended lifestyle changes to ensure that he pursued healthier diet and lifestyle behaviors moving forward. We were also able to help some community members with poor vision obtain free glasses. With the rising costs of healthcare and the limitations of the Affordable Care Act, these services are extremely valuable for the undocumented and uninsured community that cannot afford frequent visits to health professionals.”

Community Member

AMPHS Chief of Staff Mon Yuck Yu with community member Jorge, who underwent the AMPHS vision assistance program to receive free prescription glasses. Jorge has had blurry vision for many years, but never had the resources to visit a doctor. This is the first time he has been able to actually see clearly–at almost no cost to him–because, ultimately, the right to see and the right to live healthy is a basic human right–a basic human right that AMPHS tries to achieve for all its clients.

AMPHS Receives Barman’s Fund Donation to Support Community Health Project

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(3) Barman's Fund PhotoThe Academy of Medical and Public Health Services recently received a generous donation of $1,865 from the Barman’s Fund. The Barman’s Fund is a diverse assortment of bartenders who pledge one shift a month for charitable organizations. Each bartender donates every dollar they make on from that particular shift to a charitable organization. The Barman’s Fund also contacts not-for-profits to find needs that need to be fulfilled, whether on the programming or administrative end. The Barman’s Fund was founded by Brian Floyd and currently has donated over $100,000 to various organizations, with chapters in New York City, New Orleans, and Charlotte.

AMPHS plans to use this donation to buy glucose testing machines and more advanced screening equipment, giving AMPHS the opportunity to improve the capacity of its current services and to start screening community members for diabetes. More advanced screening equipment will include balance beam scales, blood pressure cuffs, eye charts, and vaccination tools. The donation from The Barman’s Fund further opens the door for new medical screenings and allows AMPHS to better help the Sunset Park community. So have some fun at your local bar and “drink with a purpose!”

Spread a little love this Valentine’s Day

February 4, 2012

Valentine's Day Sale

Yes, love is in the air and Valentine’s Day is in 10 days.  Do you have that perfect gift or place to dine with your Valentine? If you’re still in search of that perfect gift or romantic place and on a budget, then look nowhere else but Goodshop and Gooddining!

Shop at Goodshop (www.goodshop.com) and find amazing gift ideas at bargain prices. Goodshop has amazing deals on all of your favorite department stores and retailers. There are many stores to choose from so finding a great gift for your sweetheart will be easy. Check out the deals available for Valentine’s Day: http://www.goodsearch.com/Valentines-Day-category/coupons

Gooddining (www.gooddining.com) allows you to earn money for your cause while eating out at your favorite restaurants.

How does Goodshop and Gooddining work? Just indicate Academy of Medical and Public Health Services as your charity, shop or find a participating restaurant, use your coupons, and pay with a credit card online or at the restaurant. It is that easy!

All of your donations will be used to support our mission of providing access to affordable healthcare insurance and services to those in need in the underprivileged community.

So, spread a little love to the needy and your community this Valentine’s Day. Your community will love you back. Start shopping today and support AMPHS’ mission!

Have a Happy & Healthy Valentine’s Day!

– Academy of Medical & Public Health Services

AMPHS Receives Its First Corporate Donation

February 1, 2013

As many of you know, over the 2012 holiday season, we (AMPHS) had a humble fundraising goal of $2500 to ensure that we are able to do even greater things with our vision for increasing healthcare access and for continuing our programs and services to many people in need in our community. We are proud to announce that we received our first corporate donation from Chiu Consulting Group (CCG)!

CCG is a global strategic, marketing, and management consulting firm combining time-tested frameworks with implementing new customized systems and technology to drive sales, increase revenues and funding, carve niche markets, and expand customer base. CCG is focused on delivering innovative solutions built upon best practices in business to some of the most pressing concerns facing diverse organizations. CCG’s specialities include the Healthcare, Not-for-Profit, and Corporate sectors. Ingrained into the core of CCG’s foundation is a firm belief in philanthropy and as such, CCG frequently gives back to its communities through an active Social Responsibility Program.

CCG Full Logo

 

Website: http://www.chiugroup.com

General inquiry & client service: maito:service@chiugroup.com

NYC Office: 646-535-0602

We would like to thank CCG for their generosity and kindness in supporting us in our mission to meet our healthcare goals for the community, and improve lives in the process.

It is not too late to make a donation. Please consider donating to AMPHS to help continue meeting the healthcare needs of our community members. You can easily and safely make a donation on our website at: http://www.amphsonline.org/donate/ or click the “TAKE ACTION” button below!

Take Action - Donate & Volunteer__LINK__EDITED