Omaha co-sponsors Bi-National Health Week activities

by Jo Giles, UNMC public relations | October 05, 2009

Omaha health providers and social service agencies have launched efforts to improve the health and well-being of underserved Latinos as part of the annual Bi-National Health Week, which runs Oct. 3-15.

A collaboration between Mexico and California began nearly 20 years ago and has since spread across America with the growth of immigration. This year, the week is expected to provide health-related interventions to people in 40 states.

Event schedule

View a detailed calendar of Omaha's Bi-National Health Week activities.

Locally, members of the UNMC affiliated South Omaha Community Care Council organized a week of education, screenings and fun for the entire family.

While special emphasis is placed on health issues for Latinos, all activities and screenings are open to the public.

"This year, our local campaign will address a variety of health issues including breast cancer prevention, alternative medicine, domestic violence and healthy weight management," said Jose Villegas, event organizer and clinical study specialist in UNMC's Center for Reducing Health Disparities in the College of Public Health.

The south Omaha community health fair is the signature event. It was held Saturday.

Various health care professionals donate their time to provide a series of free health care screenings centered on preventative health.

"For some of our residents, the south Omaha health fair provides a rare opportunity to get much-needed health information, services and one-on-one consultation with health providers," said Shireen Rajaram, Ph.D., director of UNMC's Center for Reducing Health Disparities in the College of Public Health. "Since Latinos are disproportionally affected with diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancers, we want to directly engage citizens to improve health outcomes."