City of Lexington to Host Health Equity Conference in August

The City of Lexington wants everyone to be as healthy as possible.

In an effort to address issues and access to the health care system, the city will host a health equity conference August 12-13 at Lexington Senior High School.

The purpose of the event is to raise community awareness of health issues and address gaps in access to health care for minorities and other disadvantaged groups.

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Health equity is when everyone has the opportunity to reach their full health potential and no one is prevented from obtaining health care because of their social or economic position.

“One of the key elements of the conference is a conversation about race, social and economic disparity and its impact on health care; build a bridge to close the gaps in health care. Health is wealth and we want to provide as many resources as possible to individuals to help them navigate the health care system,” said Dr. Patricia Smyre, DEI Manager for the City of Lexington.

This two-day conference will provide educational opportunities for health professionals and individuals on different aspects of health equity.

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It will begin with keynote speaker Angela Bryant, assistant secretary for equity and inclusion for the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

There will also be two tracks available targeting healthcare providers and others focused on the individual. Topics include understanding systematic historical barriers in the healthcare system; how to involve people in health care decision-making and the importance of health equity.

Sessions will also include the value of a person’s mental, emotional and physical well-being; reconcile the traumas of past experiences and focus on positive growth in access to health care.

“No one is immune to facing a health crisis that can deplete your savings, disrupt your quality of life, and devastate your life as you know it. Working together to make this conference a success is the first step to closing the equity gaps within our community,” said Smyre.

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The second day of the conference will be a Community Health Equity Fair with vendors, food trucks, games, health checkups and other activities.

Mammograms, sports and school physical exams will also be available by appointment. Registration is required by July 21 and is available on the City of Lexington website. For more information, contact Kim Hughes at 336-476-2500.

The two-day Health Equity Conference is free, but pre-registration is required. For more information, visit

General news reporter Sharon Myers can be reached at sharo[email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @LexDispatchSM.