November 2012
Capstone October 2012 Howard University  
Health Fair a Big Hit with Employees
Gabriella Abdul-Hakim, intern, Office of University Communications
The event provided free screenings, consultations with Howard University Hospital physicians and information about the additional services that the Hospital offers.
Nearly 500 employees attended last month’s Health Fair on the Hill event. Part of the University’s new health and wellness initiative—Healthy Howard—the inaugural event featured free screenings, consultations with Hospital physicians and prizes. Some employees said they had never utilized the medical services available to them at the Hospital before, and were delighted to participate.

“I don’t remember the Hospital ever offering such a program,” said Caroline Dexter, Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Classics in the College of Arts and Sciences. “It’s a really smart service to give. There are so many problems that are easily treatable just by knowing about them.”

In the Blackburn Center ballroom, medical students from the College of Medicine offered flu shots and checked employees’ blood pressure, body mass index and glucose and cholesterol levels, while physicians offered strategies on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Information booths on additional services the Hospital offers were set up outside of the ballroom.
“I cannot stress how important awareness is and how many lives preventive care can save.”
“This health fair introduced the Howard community to the health services the Howard University Faculty Practice Plan and Howard University Hospital have to offer,” said Jeanette Gibbs, associate vice president for Health Sciences and CEO of the Faculty Practice Plan.

Herbert C. Buchanan Jr., the new CEO of Howard University Hospital, was pleased with the turnout. “People do not always know what is available to them just down the hill,” he said. “We are trying to reintroduce employees to the Hospital and this turnout is what we were looking for.”

“We don’t really get to interact with employees on the hill, so it’s a nice collaboration with everyone,” said Aminatu Lawl, a fourth-year medical student who volunteered at the event. “I enjoy giving back to the school that has given me so much, and as a Howard student how can you not love doing community service?”

Prizes were raffled off throughout the day, including four iPads, two 24-inch TVs with DVD players, Costco gift certificates and gym bags.

During the event, the Hospital also unveiled its new Employee Express Care program, which will allow Howard employees the opportunity to fast-track appointments for specific medical services.

“I think it was an excellent event. Those who haven’t gotten around to getting screened now have a chance to do so,” said Cherie Spencer, director of community outreach for the Howard University Cancer Center.

Caroline Dexter, Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Classics, has her blood pressure checked.
(Photos by Justin D. Knight)

Mary Johnson, from the Department of Medicine, was happy that the Hospital had the chance to serve the broader University community. “I cannot stress how important awareness is and how many lives preventive care can save,” she said.
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