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[June 7,2010]

Caribbean Health Summit to be Held Friday, June 18 at SUNY Downstate:

Theme is Health Disparities in the Caribbean Community

A Caribbean Health Summit for healthcare providers will be held Friday, June 18, from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, 395 Lenox Road, Brooklyn, New York 11203. Planned as an annual event, the health summit is sponsored by SUNY Downstate, in collaboration with APC Community Services and other organizations. The theme is “Health Disparities in the Caribbean Community.” 

This summit for healthcare professionals will provide valuable information on health disparities faced by Caribbean-American people and how to engage the community in promoting best healthcare practices.

Representative Donna Christensen, MD, (D-VI) will deliver the keynote address. Other speakers include Monica Sweeney, MD, MPH, assistant commissioner for HIV/AIDS prevention and control in the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene; David A. Cort, PhD, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Massachusetts–Amherst, an expert in immigration; Larry Griffith, MD, associate program director in the Department of Surgery at The Brooklyn Hospital Center; Joseph Merlino, MD, deputy executive director of behavioral health at Kings County Hospital Center and visiting professor at SUNY Downstate; and Herold Simon, MD, medical director of the East New York Diagnostic and Treatment Center.

Also speaking will be Jean Tropnas, MD, clinical assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Downstate; Leon Wilson, PhD, professor and chair of sociology at East Carolina University and an authority on family and social psychology; and Tanya Zangaglia, MD, medical director of Project Street Beat.

This conference was organized in response to the challenging health outcomes in Brooklyn. Chronic diseases (such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease) and infectious diseases (such as HIV and STDs) all disproportionately affect the populations of central Brooklyn, where many immigrant populations from the Caribbean reside.
All medical providers who treat patients from the Caribbean-American community are invited to participate in the summit. The conference is free to healthcare providers and Continuing Medical Education credits are available. Contact Janice Emanuel-Bunn at 347-715-3956 for more information or to register.
Co-sponsors also include Haitian Centers Council, National Haitian American Health Alliance, Claire Heureuse Community Center, Kings County Hospital Center, Caribbean American Nurses Association, Brooklyn HIV Care Network, Docs Tee Time, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Office of Minority Health, New York State Department of Health Office of Minority Health, the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, and the Office of State Senator Eric Adams (D-NY 20th Dist.).


SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, Colleges of Nursing and Health Related Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, a School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and an Advanced Biotechnology Park and Biotechnology Incubator.

SUNY Downstate ranks eighth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools. More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school.