Every June, the Maryland Department of Health teams up with the Men’s Health Clinic to provide Baltimore County residents with the knowledge and resources they need to live a clean and healthy life. In addition to carefully monitoring their health at all times, Baltimore County health officials heartily encourage Baltimore County men to attend the free screening clinics that are offered four times a year.
This year, two male health clinics participated in the free screening event on June 24th from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. They were the Eastern Family Resource Center and the Woodlawn Health Center, both in Baltimore.
Clinics such as the Eastern Family Resource Center and the Woodlawn Health Center screen uninsured and underinsured males in their teens and later years alike for a wide variety of health problems. Their purpose is to prevent infectious diseases and promote positive and healthy lifestyles through informing, advocating, and linking men to professional health care and treatment whenever necessary.
From treating sexually transmitted diseases to helping men to stop smoking, male health clinics can assist with virtually any health problem or general concern. In fact, when it comes to sexually transmitted diseases, men should certainly have themselves checked regularly. In 2013, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) ranked Maryland in 7th place for the most HIV infections. In fact, 2,168 Maryland residents were diagnosed with HIV that year alone. Maryland also ranks 20th in 2013 for chlamydial infections, and 21st in all the states for gonorrhea.
As for smoking, the latest data from the CDC shows nearly 20% of all Maryland adults smoked cigarettes in 2011, and 12% of the population in grades 9-12 did the same. This puts Maryland in 4th place in terms of having the largest smoking population. 66% of Maryland’s smokers tried to quit in 2010, but yet the Maryland “quitline” only received 11 thousand phone calls that year, representing less than 1% of all the tobacco smokers in the state. This means that plenty of people need help to stop smoking, but they may not be seeking outside help when they should.
Although cigarettes are certainly dangerous for your health, men’s health clinics also deal with more severe addictions as well. Substance abuse is rampant in Maryland and often requires outside intervention. There were 144 alcohol and drug related deaths in Baltimore County in the year 2015 – 48 were from opioid abuse, 25 were from cocaine, and 32 were from alcohol. Even if a person believes they have their addictions under control, they should be aware that 889 Marylanders unintentionally died of drug use between the months January to September in 2015, up from last year by more than 100 deaths. As the numbers show, more people in Maryland are dying now from drug abuse than ever before. Checking into a men’s health clinic today, therefore, could help prevent them from becoming one of these statistics for the year 2016.
Aside from treating sexually transmitted infections and addictions, men’s health clinics can also test for heart problems, hearing disorders, cancers, weight issues, and emotional complications such as severe depression. They can also provide helpful assistance to get men enrolled in government programs such as state Medical Assistance and other subsidized insurance programs designed to promote good health and positive thinking. Finally, they can point Baltimore County residents in the right direction for medical treatment, with or without insurance.
Baltimore County works closely with men’s health clinics to provide ample support wherever possible. For a complete list of free screening days, be sure to visit the official Baltimore County news website at http://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/News/BaltimoreCountyNow.