Gift of Life Provides Free Healthcare Screenings for Medically Underserved Men
Published 10:28 am Wednesday, June 8, 2016
Special to The Leader
ORANGE — In honor of National Men’s Health Month, more than 80 medically underserved men received free healthcare screenings from nearly 60 compassionate medical professionals in Orange. These comprehensive primary care and prostate cancer tests are supplemented with extensive education on healthy lifestyles and heighten awareness of men’s preventable health problems in Southeast Texas.
Orange clients expressed appreciation for having access to a full continuum of care, including consultations with physicians.
“I’m surprised because I didn’t think there would be this much involved,” said an Orange screening client. “I expected the PSA test, but they’re checking my blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure. It’s good to know everything is okay on my charts, and that I can talk with a physician. It’s important to know what’s going on with your body.”
Early detection is the best protection, and statistics reflect that the five-year survival rate for men whose prostate cancer is diagnosed early is nearly 100 percent.
Two additional screenings will be offered from 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM on Saturday, June 11 in Beaumont at Lamar Institute of Technology and Saturday, June 25 in Port Arthur at the Carl Parker Center.
Screening pre-registration is recommended, but walk-ins will be accepted subject to eligibility.
Gift of Life screens men who are at least 45 years of age (40 if African American or younger if there is a family history of prostate cancer) and have not had prostate cancer, have limited income and are medically underinsured.
In an effort to reduce disparities among men who cannot afford insurance or who have high deductibles, the Gift of Life provides a free panel of screenings, including prostate-specific antigen (PSA), cholesterol and glucose, blood pressure, HIV and Hepatitis C tests. Gift of Life’s Men Against Cancer Prostate Cancer Support Group members assist clients and ensure everyone receives breakfast and lunch, door prizes and other health-related materials.
Since 2000, the Gift of Life has made available nearly 8,400 free prostate cancer screenings and helped extend the lives of 69 men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. Screenings, diagnostic tests and cancer treatment costs are entirely paid for by the organization, with the majority of funds for this endeavor generated by its annual fundraiser, Champagne and Ribs.
Gift of Life’s Prostate Cancer Support Group, Men Against Cancer, meets on the second Tuesday of each month at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church and allows men an opportunity to receive support, share experiences and gain information from featured speakers as they embark on their journey of recovery.
Special thanks to Gift of Life Men’s Health Month Screening Partners: Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas, UTMB, Legacy Community Health, Gulf Coast Health Center, Triangle Area Network, Spindletop Center, Lamar Institute of Technology and Lamar University faculty and students.
For more information, visit giftoflifebmt.org or call the office at 409.833.3663. To register for a screening, please call the 24-hour hotline at 409.860.3369.