February Events Celebrate Black History Month, Focus on Health

At 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23, the Community Grand Rounds forum will focus on the topic of melanoma and people of color, as well as the disparities that exist in diagnoses and outcomes regarding the condition. The event can be viewed virtually via Webex.

Programs like this held at Albany Medical Center throughout Black History Month are focusing not only on the celebration of the achievements by African Americans but also on topics related to the health of Black communities, as well as barriers to care.

The Albany Medical Center Office of Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion held an event, Mental Health in the Black Community, for employees on Wednesday, Feb. 16. The discussion, part of a monthly series, is a chance for participants to engage in a safe space, share stories, gain new perspectives on related topics, and build community.

The office will also be hosting an event, Celebrating Black History Month, on Friday, Feb. 25 to share the stories and experiences of members of the Albany Medical Center community.

Albany Medical College focused Community Grand Rounds topics for the month on a pair of topics related to health in Black communities. An event held Wednesday, Feb. 9, Screening Health Conditions in Black Communities, examined barriers that Black communities face regarding access to screening for various conditions such as colorectal cancer, heart disease and chronic kidney disease.

“The presentation analyzed the factors and reality regarding the implications of race in medicine, understanding barriers to screening, disparities in relation to certain conditions and recommendation to mitigate these disparities,” said Meheret Mekonnen, ’24, one of the presenters at the Feb. 9 event.

Albany Medical College student organizations, such as the Student National Medical Association, host year-round events with a particular focus on Black medical professionals.