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The African American Health Program (AAHP) is committed to eliminating health disparities and improving the number and quality of years of life for Black residents of Montgomery County, Maryland.

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Introducing DMeetings, an online comprehensive course on diabetes management.

See our Guide to Programs and Services.

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On Saturday, July 28, join the African American Health Program for a Brother 2 Brother Talk on mental and cardiovascular health.

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AAHP's Maternal and Child Health focus area's S.M.I.L.E. program stands for Starts More Infants Living Equally healthy. Learn more about our FREE services for expecting mothers.

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AAHP News

September is Infant Mortality Awareness Month

September is Infant Mortality Awareness Month. An estimate of the number of infant deaths for every 1,000 live births, infant mortality is a critical measure of a population’s overall health. Because Black women andBlack babies have the highest maternal and infant mortality rates compared to women and babies of all other ethnic/racial groups, Infant Mortality AwarenessMonth is extremely important for African Americans. AAHP observes Infant MortalityAwareness Month by highlighting the SMILE Program (AAHP’s maternal and child health focus area), its programs and services, as well as information and insights that can help curtail Black maternal and infant mortality and  of the most serious health disparities that impact Black people.

Nationwide, Black babies are more than three times as likely to die from low-birth weight complications compared to White babies. In Montgomery County, Blacks had the highest percentage of low birth weight and Whites had the lowest percentage between 2012-2016. Not only do Black women have relatively high rates of the health conditions that lead to maternal and infant mortality, (obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes), Black women are more likely to be subjected to consistently higher levels of stress as well, due to such factors as economic uncertainty, racism, sexism, personal relationship stress, etc. Pregnant women (and women who may become pregnant) should take extra care of their physical and mental health. Proper nutrition, exercise, and stress management can help prevent health issues that can negatively impact the health of an unborn baby.

AAHP invites Montgomery County residents to observe Infant MortalityAwareness Month by learning more about the SMILE Program and its work to support and guide Black women towards a healthier journey with pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and caring for themselves and their babies. We also invite you to spread the word about our services to other Montgomery County residents.

AAHP News

August is National Breastfeeding Month. This month, AAHP will highlight the benefits of breastfeeding for both mother and baby and focus on supporting and encouraging breastfeeding among Black women. Black parents and parents-to-be in Montgomery County, feel free to share your stories and questions about breastfeeding on our social media channels throughout the month!

Community Health News

Breastfeeding Awareness Month

August 1, 2018

This Black Breastfeeding Week, AAHP celebrates breastfeeding among Black women.  Black breastfeeding rates are rising! According to the CDC, the 2004 National Immunization Survey reports 50% of Black children were breastfed, and the 2011-2015 Survey reports 64% of children were breastfed. Higher breastfeeding rates mean healthier babies, healthier mothers, and a healthier Black community.

Breastfeeding is recognized as the best source of nutrition for infants, providing protection against common diseases and conditions such as ear infections, diarrhea, and asthma. Breastfed babies are also less likely to die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and are less likely to become obese or develop diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure later in life. For mothers, breastfeeding reduces the risk for breast cancer and diabetes. Unfortunately, many Black women have been unable to reap those benefits due to challenges that have made it harder to breastfeed, including lack of support from health care professionals and the need to return to work soon after giving birth. Because Black women need more targeted support for breastfeeding, AAHP’s S.M.I.L.E. Program provides invaluable education and guidance for pregnant and breastfeeding Black women in Montgomery County.

AAHP observes Breastfeeding Awareness Month and Black Breastfeeding Week (August 25-31) by sharing information about breastfeeding and AAHP’s work in maternal and child health through the S.M.I.L.E. program. We invite you to follow our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts and contribute to the conversation by sharing your own stories about breastfeeding. Together, we can build a brighter, healthier future for our children.

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AAHP News

May 10, 2018

August is National Breastfeeding Month. This month, AAHP will highlight the benefits of breastfeeding for both mother and baby and focus on supporting and encouraging breastfeeding among Black women. Black parents and parents-to-be in Montgomery County, feel free to share your stories and questions about breastfeeding on our social media channels throughout the month!

UPCOMING EVENTS

AAHP News

August is National Breastfeeding Month. This month, AAHP will highlight the benefits of breastfeeding for both mother and baby and focus on supporting and encouraging breastfeeding among Black women. Black parents and parents-to-be in Montgomery County, feel free to share your stories and questions about breastfeeding on our social media channels throughout the month!

Community Health News

Breastfeeding Awareness Month

August 1, 2018

This Black Breastfeeding Week, AAHP celebrates breastfeeding among Black women.  Black breastfeeding rates are rising! According to the CDC, the 2004 National Immunization Survey reports 50% of Black children were breastfed, and the 2011-2015 Survey reports 64% of children were breastfed. Higher breastfeeding rates mean healthier babies, healthier mothers, and a healthier Black community.

Breastfeeding is recognized as the best source of nutrition for infants, providing protection against common diseases and conditions such as ear infections, diarrhea, and asthma. Breastfed babies are also less likely to die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and are less likely to become obese or develop diabetes, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure later in life. For mothers, breastfeeding reduces the risk for breast cancer and diabetes. Unfortunately, many Black women have been unable to reap those benefits due to challenges that have made it harder to breastfeed, including lack of support from health care professionals and the need to return to work soon after giving birth. Because Black women need more targeted support for breastfeeding, AAHP’s S.M.I.L.E. Program provides invaluable education and guidance for pregnant and breastfeeding Black women in Montgomery County.

AAHP observes Breastfeeding Awareness Month and Black Breastfeeding Week (August 25-31) by sharing information about breastfeeding and AAHP’s work in maternal and child health through the S.M.I.L.E. program. We invite you to follow our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts and contribute to the conversation by sharing your own stories about breastfeeding. Together, we can build a brighter, healthier future for our children.

← See all Community Health News

AAHP provides information and services based on six major focus areas.

Maternal and Child Health

We provide education, counseling, support groups and case management to expecting mothers.

WHY? Because Black women had the highest rate of preterm births and low birth weight compared to women of other races.

Source: Health in Montgomery County, 2008-2016

WHY? Because Black infants are 3.2 times as likely to die from complications related to low birthweight as compared to non-Hispanic White infants.

Source: US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health

Diabetes/heart health

We conduct classes,  events, and free health screenings to help prevent and manage diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

WHY? In recent years, Blacks had a life expectancy 3.4 years shorter than Whites, largely due to heart disease.

Source: The American Heart Association

WHY? Because Black infants are 3.2 times as likely to die from complications related to low birthweight as compared to non-Hispanic White infants.

Source: US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health

WHY? Blacks are, on average, twice as likely to have diabetes as Whites.

Source: US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health

CANCER

We provide cancer prevention, education, community outreach and referrals.

WHY? Because Blacks have the highest death rate and shortest survival of any racial and ethnic group in the U.S. for most cancers.

Source: American Cancer Society

WHY? Because Black men and women are about twice as likely to die from colorectal cancer and breast cancer than White men and women, respectively.

Source: The American Cancer Society

STI/HIV/AIDS

We provide free and confidential HIV testing and pre- and post-test counseling.

WHY? Infection rates for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis have increased in Montgomery County, with Blacks having the highest rates.

Source: Health in Montgomery County, 2008-2016

WHY? Because in 2016, in Montgomery County, five times more Blacks were diagnosed with HIV than Whites.

Source: Maryland Department of Health

MENTAL HEALTH

We raise awareness and provide mental health education, screenings and referrals.

WHY? Because Blacks are 10% more likely to report having serious psychological distress than Whites.

Source: US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health

WHY? Because Blacks are more likely to be misdiagnosed and to receive no or less adequate treatment for mental health disorders than Whites.

Source: National Alliance on Mental Illness

ORAL HEALTH

We provide educational materials at community outreach events focusing on oral health and disease prevention.

WHY? Blacks are among the groups with the poorest oral health compared to other races.

Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

WHY? During 2011-2014, 19% of Black children had untreated dental caries in their primary teeth compared to 10% of White children.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention










During 2011–2014, 19% of Black children had untreated dental caries in their primary teeth, compared to 10% of White children.













During 2011–2014, 19% of Black children had untreated dental caries in their primary teeth, compared to 10% of White children.













During 2011–2014, 19% of Black children had untreated dental caries in their primary teeth, compared to 10% of White children.













During 2011–2014, 19% of Black children had untreated dental caries in their primary teeth, compared to 10% of White children.













During 2011–2014, 19% of Black children had untreated dental caries in their primary teeth, compared to 10% of White children.




Source: US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health

The African American Health Program (AAHP) is committed to eliminating health disparities and improving the number and quality of years of life for Black residents of Montgomery County, Maryland. 

AAHP's Executive Coalition's next meeting will be held on Thursday, January 11 from 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm at the Silver Spring Civic Building in the Spring Room.  The topic of discussion will be community collaboration.

AAHP's Chronic Disease Prevention and Management Classes at the Germantown Library will focus on cancer this January. On Tuesday, January 23, from 6 - 9 pm, the class will provide an overview of cancer and on Tuesday, January 30, from 6-9 pm, the class will focus on prostate, lung, and breast cancer.

For a complete listing of AAHP's October events, please see our October calendar.
See September Calendar

UPCOMING EVENTS

AAHP PSAs

PSA: Cross-Cutting Issues
PSA: AAHP Focus Areas
PSA: The S.M.I.L.E. Program
PSA: Diabetes
PSA: Men's Health

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Why should YOU engage
with AAHP?

No matter your age or health status, your health should be a priority. AAHP provides a wealth of resources and services to help any individual live a healthier life.

To schedule a free health assessment, please call the AAHP office at 240.777.1833 or email

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