Durham hosts health fair about black neighborhoods

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Durham hosts health fair about black neighborhoods

The Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People hosted its first-ever health fair on Sunday.

The event took place inside of the Bull City's Hayti Heritage Center and was an opportunity to get the community engaged and educated on healthcare and opioid abuse.

Senator Floyd McKissick Jr. was one of the main speakers at the Unity and Community Health Fair.

McKissick expressed the need for Medicaid expansion and criticized the lack of healthy, quality foods in black and brown neighborhoods.

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Deputy Secretary of North Carolina Health and Human Services, Mark Benton, was the keynote speaker. Benton emphasized that health care doesn't start in the doctor's office.

"Your zip code is probably the greatest predictor of your life expectancy as well as your total health care cost will be over your lifetime," said Benton.

"This is our opportunity to take healthcare into our own hands and into the communities hands to provide information, contact, and resources," said Dr. Richard Watkins, who co-chaired the event.

Discussed topics also included the state's mission to tackle opioid addiction through prevention, treatment, and enforcement through the STOP Act.

"The STOP Act will require those smarter prescribing practices and puts $20 million dollars over two years into treatment and prevention," said Deputy Attorney General, Jasmine S. McGhee.

Unfortunately, the information was delivered to a relatively small audience.

Yet, organizers said that doesn't measure the success of the event.

"Anyone here can create a viral effect," said Watkins. "One person here can go out and tell two people, then two people can go tell four people, four people can turn into 16."

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health carefoodhealthopioidsDurham
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