Maya Angelou has long been an advocate for civil rights and has learned to not only stand up for her own well-being, but also empower others to do the same for themselves. With this mission, the celebrated author has decided to partner up with Novant Health and open the Maya Angelou Center for Women's Health and Wellness in her hometown of Winston-Salem, N.C. The health center will offer clinical programs such as heart wellness, cancer treatment, maternity, bone and joint, and behavioral care as well as a strong focus on preventative care.
"The disparities are embarrassing," she says about the health gaps and inequalities. "What they hope to do at the center is to coordinate all the aspects of women's health and wellness ... encouraging women to look after themselves. In that way, they can almost be sure to count on some prevention."
To close these health disparities plaguing our community and encourage women to become advocates for their own health, the center will offer breast cancer screenings and educate patients on heart disease risks and the AIDS epidemic.
"The time has passed when a woman can act like everybody is as innocent as she is. So you don't have to ask a man to use protection. That's ridiculous. It's [about] being aware," she says. "That's the biggest gift I can give anybody: 'Wake up, be aware of who you are, what you're doing and what you can do to prevent yourself from becoming ill.'"
The Maya Angelou Center for Women's Health and Wellness will open at the Forsyth Medical Center in June 2012.
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