black men doctor

This is dedicated to all the fellas and the ladies who love them!

How can we get our black men to the doctor?

Men, have you had your annual physical yet this year? If not, let’s talk about what might be hindering you. Dr. Derek Griffith, an African-American Psychologist, at the University of Michigan has conducted extensive research on men’s health disparities. In a recent study he concluded:

“It’s not that they didn’t want to go or were uninterested in their health. They just didn’t like what happened when they went,” says Griffith, also the assistant director of the Center for Research on Ethnicity, Culture and Health at the University of Michigan. He says that African-American women are two times as likely as African-American men to have gone to the doctor.
According to the study, Black men avoid physicians’ offices because of lack of health coverage, mistrust of doctors and diagnoses, fears of negative news about their health, concerns about possibly being told to take off work, family and friends’ negative attitudes about doctors and unsatisfactory or disrespectful attitudes of health care professionals.”  Get Thee to the Doctor by Shirley Bolden

Now that you’re armed with a bit of knowledge about why Black men are reluctant to go to the Doctor, let’s check out a successful initiative that has been hard at work in the community, focusing on Black men. The Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program was organized in 2006.Their goal is to screen for cardiovascular disease (diabetes and high blood pressure), provide disease prevention education and refer men to local free or low-cost health care providers. This is all done right in the barbershop! What better place to reach a large audience of men than a place where they gather and feel most comfortable? To date, the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program has screened over 30,000 men for diabetes & high blood pressure. The Barbershop National Tour is coming to a city near you soon. To learn more or to volunteer as an individual, barbershop or civic organization, please visit:

Blessings and good health,