Barbershop Wellness Health Initiative
Since November 2021, Lee Health physicians, pharmacists, nurses, and other staff have joined community members at Utopia Unisex Salon, to get to know our community’s health needs, check blood pressures, and offer supportive services. Barbershop Wellness is an outreach program of Lee Health, and part of the board approved Implementation Plan addressing the needs identified in the Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA).
(Nzingha Gaines, MSW – Nzingha YOGA)
Barbershop Wellness leverages the culture of the barbershop to promote health. Barbershops are a space known for community information sharing and their unique setting removes key barriers to health care access such as cost, health understanding, proximity, and trust. Research on barbershop interventions, in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that when men with untreated high blood pressure had a screening, along with a little encouragement from their barber, as well as a visit with a provider in the shop, nearly two-thirds of them reduced their blood pressure to a healthy range.
(Janice Watson (University of Florida extension office) teaching nutrition.)
With its fifty-year presence in the neighborhood, Utopia Unisex Salon is a recognized gathering space and ideal for this exciting health initiative. The framework of Barbershop Wellness is modeled after the six pillars of Lifestyle Medicine and one of the pillars is highlighted every month:
- Plant-based diet
- Regular physical exercise
- Restorative sleep
- Stress management
- Positive social connections
- Avoidance of risky substances/behaviors.
Our team of physicians, nurses, health care professionals, health care students, and community volunteers partner to check blood pressures, provide health information and community resources and encourage healthy habits.
(Alphonso Hopson – Alz Divine Fitness)
The Barbershop Wellness team is at Utopia Unisex Salon from 10am – 12pm the first Saturday of every month (except when a holiday weekend is involved, then we reschedule to the second Saturday) and is open to the public. We look forward to meeting you! Learn more about the need for Barbershop Wellness!
Utopia Unisex Salon: 3069 Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Ft. Myers, FL 33916
Community Health Needs Assessment
Interested in supporting the Barbershop Wellness program or other Lee Health community outreach initiatives?
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