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Free health fair for South L.A. residents Saturday

September 15, 2011 |  9:06 am

Healthcare workers will provide free screenings and referrals to health resources to South Los Angeles residents during the 25th Senate District School Readiness & Health Fair scheduled for Saturday.

Licensed nurses and other members of Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West will volunteer to provide services including blood glucose screenings, blood pressure checks and tips on managing and preventing chronic diseases such as diabetes, according to the union. They will also help fair participants determine whether they are eligible for health insurance.

The International Diabetes Federation announced earlier this week that "the diabetes epidemic continues to worsen" and worldwide the number of people afflicted by the disease has reached a staggering 366 million.

"As a healthcare worker, when I hear the latest news about how many people diabetes kills every year, I need to take action," Les Harris, a physical therapist at Kaiser Sunset in Los Angeles, said in written remarks. "Testing blood glucose levels is just one small way that we can save lives in South L.A."

South Los Angeles has one of the highest rates of chronic disease in California and hundreds of thousands of the community’s residents are uninsured, including children from low-income families, the elderly and people with disabilities, union officials said.

The health fair will be held between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. at Jesse Owens County Park, 9651 S. Western Street in Los Angeles.


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