Kaiser Permanente of the Mid-Atlantic States is partnering with four Baltimore City barbershops and beauty salons to offer free flu immunizations and a wide range of health screenings and wellness services to local residents, regardless of whether they have insurance or are Kaiser Permanente members. The program is part of Kaiser Permanente’s commitment to addressing core drivers of health in Baltimore and across the region.
Following a successful pilot with New Beginnings Barbershop in West Baltimore, the public health effort is expanding to three additional locations. In addition to clinical services, the program will offer career support, fitness instruction, and nutrition counseling. The local barbershops and beauty salons that will participate in the program are Illusions Barber Shop, New Beginnings Barbershop, Short Cutz and Vanity the Salon.
“Kaiser Permanente is thrilled to expand upon this exciting and important program,” said Bernadette Loftus, MD, associate executive director, The Permanente Medical Group, which provides medical care to Kaiser Permanente members. “By providing Baltimore residents with access to no-cost preventive care and engaging them in conversations with our award-winning physicians about health and wellbeing, we are giving them tools they need to get and stay healthy.”
The following clinical services will be available on the Mobile Health Vehicle, located near our partner barbershops and beauty salons, to all members of the community at no cost: flu vaccinations, body mass index calculations, blood pressure checks, blood sugar screenings, HIV tests, screenings for liver and kidney disease and take-home colorectal cancer tests, and more. Kaiser Permanente members will also have the option of scheduling follow-up visits, while non-members may be referred to community clinics as needed.
Individuals who receive Kaiser Permanente screenings and health services are eligible to receive non-clinical services from community partners such as GymGo, providing online personal training, fitness instruction, and nutrition counseling; the Pratt Mobile Job Center, providing support for job applications and job placement services; and Health Care Access Maryland, offering health education and important information on the upcoming open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act. These services promote health, wealth and equity for all who participate.
“We are excited to work hand-in-hand with these local barbershops and beauty salons and with many trusted community partners to make Baltimore one of the healthiest cities in America,” said Kim Horn, president of Kaiser Permanente of the Mid-Atlantic States. “Kaiser Permanente strives to eliminate health disparities and build healthier communities, and we couldn’t do that without strong partnerships like the ones we have with these local businesses.”
“When people leave New Beginnings Barbershop, I want them not only to look great but also to feel great,” said Troy Staton, co-owner of New Beginnings Barbershop. “By partnering with Kaiser Permanente, I hope New Beginnings is making it that much easier for my clientele — and this community — to reach its full potential.”
The Kaiser Permanente mobile health unit will also be on-site on Fridays and Saturdays from September 8, 2017, through December 16, 2017. Please check with local barbershops and beauty salons for the times of operations each week.
Kaiser Permanente encourages all Baltimore residents to participate in these programs to learn about ways to stay healthy and to get support in their efforts to achieve individual and community health.
The effort at New Beginnings barbershop is just one example of Kaiser Permanente’s work to reduce health disparities and help communities across the country. This summer, Kaiser Permanente announced a flagship partnership with Bon Secours in West Baltimore and launched the Kaiser Permanente Institute for Equitable Leadership to strengthen five Baltimore organizations. Last fall, a partnership with a West Baltimore neighborhood to renovate a park in Park Heights created a safe place for children to play.