January 29, 2006

Detroit Day One (part two)

It was still raining when we drove into Detroit and many areas of downtown near the Y have been closed for Super Bowl activities, so getting the Y was a challenge.

The facility was brand new - it had new building smell... maybe it was the varnish on the floors of the basketball court when the health fair was held.

Here is a photograh of the Super Bowl XL banner hanging over the stage. So many Super Bowl XL banners everywhere. The city is quite proud to be hosting the event and they (the city fathers and mothers) having been working hard for a year and half getting ready... and it shows.

The basketball court was set up like most health fairs... folding tables around the outside edges of the room. There were hospitals and special interest groups, like diabetes and lead poison prevention and prostate cancer awareness... various groups doing various types of screening.

The Living Heart Foundation was providing blood pressure measurements and measurements of body mass index. Pretty neat stuff! I had available patient education bulletins, copies of the newsletter, the general information brochure and the "now famous" snore score flyer. Here is a picture of our portion of the table... I had the small posters of our logo done just for this event. They are quite nice.

Also located at our table was the nutrionists from the Henry Ford Hospital. Their focus is on cardiovascular health. Their materials were healthy eating and exercise.

I was expecting a larger crowd, but with the weather being less than terrific, my expectations were lowered and I was pleased with the result. A number of people passed by and stopped to pick the snore score flyer and the education bulletin on being evaluated for sleep apnea.

The highlight of the day was, of course, meeting the football players. There are some like the fellow pictured to the left that, if they have sleep apnea, they are an atypical case. This retired player is Lem Barney who has the distinction of being a member of the football Hall of Fame. An interesting gentleman and very committed to helping out folks living in the inner city of Detroit. Then there are fellows like this gent, to the right, who size was remarkable when compared with just about anyone else in the room: Larry Tharpe. I did not have much occasion to speak with him, but then I probably would have gotten a sore neck from all the looking up.

Not being one who is particularly familiar with football and football players, retired or active, it was quite an experience. I will have another opportunity to interact with these players and others, later this week when the Living Heart Foundation conducts it health screening of retired football players. In that venue I hope to have an opportunity to find out what they know about sleep apnea and perhaps more importantly what they don't know.

Tomorrow, I visit Harper Hospital and Safwan Badr... former board member of the ASAA and chief of the sleep section at the hospital.

Here are a couple of other photos of the players... one of Lem Barney seated on the stage and Eric Berkley speaking to the crowd.

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