Black women's health forum is May 18

The Second State of Black Women Health Forum is set for May 18 at HISD's Young Women's College Preparatory Academy, 1906 Cleburne St.

African American women are three times more likely to die from complications due to pregnancy, and they are disproportionately burdened by chronic conditions such as anemia, cardiovascular disease and obesity.

Photo: Houston Defender

The event, designed to spotlight those issues and others, will feature student assemblies focused on physical and mental health in the morning, and an evening adult program during which questions from the audience will be answered by Black medical professionals.

Presented by The Houston Defender, a weekly African-American newspaper, the forum is sponsored by H-E-B., Texas Children's Hospital, J.P. Morgan Chase, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, the City of Houston, and The Steve Fund, an organization dedicated to the mental health and emotional well-being of young people of color.

"Black women, especially younger women, are more likely to have more aggressive breast cancers at an earlier age and die more often from the disease, making breast cancer screening, early detection and clinical trial enrollment especially important for our community," said Lorna McNeill, Ph.D., chair of Health Disparities Research at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. McNeill will speak on clinical trials at the event.

Michelle Riley Brown, executive vice president of Texas Children's Hospital, said, "All Black women and girls should have access not only to quality medical care that specifically addresses their needs, but also to vital information essential for their long-term physical and emotional health."

Admission is free with registration at Eventbrite. Attendees will have chances to win prizes and receive free health screenings plus free COVID-19 and flu vaccinations. Swag bags will be distributed to the first 100.

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