Black Advisory Committee

Black Leadership Advisory Committee (BLAC)

The Black Leadership Advisory Committee (B.L.A.C.) was founded to respectfully guide CrescentCare’s efforts to improve health outcomes in the Black community in New Orleans; raising awareness around sexual health and overall well-being to reduce stigma, eliminate barriers to care, and end health disparities. With African Americans at an exponentially higher lifetime risk of acquiring HIV and other chronic conditions, such as Diabetes and Cardiovascular disease, CrescentCare is prioritizing efforts to address the inequities that exacerbate these issues. B.L.A.C. also strives to highlight contributions that African Americans have made to healthcare and our community, as well as celebrate all aspects of Black culture. #fortheculture

BLAC Chairs:
Stephanie Kennedy
Shanika Thompson


“Healthcare for Culture” Campaign

CrescentCare’s Black Leadership Advisory Committee is dedicated to ensuring that our community has access to the respectful, knowledgeable, convenient, and quality healthcare we deserve. B.L.A.C. launched its #fortheculture campaign to raise awareness around HIV, stigma, and overall well-being in the Black community of New Orleans. With the city undergoing a huge cultural shift and experiencing the negative effects of gentrification that ultimately impact health, it’s time that we include cultural preservation in the narrative about health equity! View the Healthcare for Culture Campaign on facebook.


In the news:

Women Should Consider Truvada For PrEP Too, HIV Prevention Advocates Say : Shots - Health News : NPR

Women Should Consider Truvada For PrEP Too, HIV Prevention Advocates Say : Shots – Health News : NPR

PrEP, the once-a-day pill that prevents HIV, is over 90% effective and is finally making it’s way into mainstream conversations. We prescribe PrEP here at CrescentCare, and even have staff dedicated to making sure clients can make appointments to see a PrEP provider and access the medication with little to no out-of-pocket cost. Here’s an interesting fact: about 26% of our clients who have been prescribed PrEP are Black, yet Black people make up about 69% of the new HIV diagnoses in the New Orleans metro area. Weird, right? And in 2017, there were more Black women diagnosed with HIV than White men in the New Orleans area. So this begs the question: If more Black people, specifically Black women, are being impacted by HIV, why aren’t more of us on PrEP? Check out this article that addresses the use of PrEP in women of color! by Heather Boerner , NPR ... More →
Why America’s Black Mothers and Babies Are in a Life-or-Death Crisis - The New York Times

Why America’s Black Mothers and Babies Are in a Life-or-Death Crisis – The New York Times

By Linda Villarosa, The New York Times The answer to the disparity in death rates has everything to do with the lived experience of being a black woman in America. When Simone Landrum felt tired and both nauseated and ravenous at the same time in the spring of 2016, she recognized the signs of pregnancy. Her beloved grandmother died earlier that year, and Landrum felt a sense of divine order when her doctor confirmed on Muma's birthday that she was carrying a girl. She decided she would name her daughter Harmony. "I pictured myself teaching my daughter to sing," says Landrum, now 23, who lives in New Orleans. "It was something I thought we could do together." But Landrum, who was the mother of two young sons, noticed something different about this pregnancy as it progressed. The trouble began with constant headaches and sensitivity to light; Landrum described the pain as ... More →
The Soapbox Collective @ CrescentCare!!

The Soapbox Collective @ CrescentCare!!

On Saturday, May 11th CrescentCare teamed up with Making Connections NOLA, one of our neighborhood partner organizations, to host their monthly Soapbox Collective! The Soapbox is an open mic series that usually convenes at safe spaces around the city. Not only was this special edition of The Soapbox held at CrescentCare Elysian Fields, but it also debuted our designated community art space on the 2nd floor of the building. The art was thoughtfully created by St. Roch youth, and captures life in and the beauty of this neighborhood! The event also featured a performance from New Orleans vocalist and guitarist Rahim Glaspy, and was catered by Sweet Soulfood Vegan Restaurant. CrescentCare’s Prevention staff offered free HIV testing during the event, and B.L.A.C. members offered clinic tours to attendees. Thanks to everyone who came out to join us for a night of art, poetry, and fellowship with our community! Click here to learn more about the work ... More →
Total HIV cases keep increasing in New Orleans — and doctors say that's not a bad thing; here's why | Gambit

Total HIV cases keep increasing in New Orleans — and doctors say that’s not a bad thing; here’s why | Gambit

We’re winning! Well… kind of. Advances in HIV testing and treatment have come a long way over the past few decades, with rapid HIV tests taking as little as 60 seconds to deliver results and some people living with HIV having the option of taking only one pill a day to keep the virus suppressed. We’re also seeing fewer new diagnosis, and higher HIV prevalence, which may sound concerning, but means that new infections are going down and people living with the virus are living longer lives! While this is the overall trend, we can do better. We’re still seeing more Black men and women diagnosed with HIV. These groups also tend to have lower linkage to and retention in care, and lower viral suppression rates. B.L.A.C.’s very own Dr. Jason Halperin recently spoke to Gambit about this disparity, recent trends, and what we can do to help. Get the ... More →
CrescentCare's Black Leadership Advisory Committee will be tabling at this year's Black Birth Matters Conference!

CrescentCare’s Black Leadership Advisory Committee will be tabling at this year’s Black Birth Matters Conference!

CrescentCare's Black Leadership Advisory Committee will be tabling at this year's Black Birth Matters Conference! Black Birth Matters is a day-long biannual gathering dedicating to creating solutions at the intersections of birth justice, racial justice and mental health ... More →
Logo, Blacks in Government

CrescentCare’s Black Leadership Advisory Committee receives community service award

CrescentCare’s Health Educator Catrina Coleman represented CrescentCare at the Blacks in Government Conference this week, and the Central New Orleans Bogalusa District Lay Organization church chose CrescentCare’s Black Leadership Advisory Committee as the recipient of their annual community service award. They donated to the for HIV outreach. Catrina accepted the award on behalf of CrescentCare ... More →