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U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin to Address National Association of Black Journalists Conference on Health Disparities

Benjamin joins Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Phill Wilson and Greg Millett among the roster of speakers.

WASHINGTON, March 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin will address the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) annual conference on Health Disparities, March 4-6, 2010, at the Barbara Jordan Conference Center, Kaiser Family Foundation, 1330 G. Street, NW, Washington, D.C.

Dr. Benjamin joins U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, Greg Millett of the White House Office on National AIDS Policy and members of the academic, medical, health policy and journalism community. Vice Admiral Benjamin is scheduled to speak on Thursday, March 4, 2010 at 5 p.m.

Topics addressed at the conference include covering and understanding the social determinants of health, creative community solutions to health care access and prevention, updates on HIV/AIDS in the black community, mental health, food access, childhood obesity and understanding studies and data. In addition, Saturday is Career Development Day, dedicated to helping journalists figure out new opportunities to cover health in this changing environment.

As the 18th Surgeon General of the United States Public Health Service, Dr. Benjamin serves as America's Doctor and provides the public with the best scientific information available on how to improve their health and the health of the nation. A native of Mobile, Alabama, Dr. Benjamin oversees the operational command of 6,500 uniformed health officers who serve in locations around the world to promote, protect and advance the health of the American People. In 1998, Dr. Benjamin was the United States recipient of the Nelson Mandela Award for Health and Human Rights, and she was named by Time Magazine as one of the "Nation's 50 Future Leaders Age 40 and Under."

"It is a true honor to have Dr. Benjamin address the NABJ Conference on Health Disparities," said NABJ President Kathy Y. Times. "As journalists, the opportunity to dialogue with Vice Admiral Benjamin on this important topic is vital as we take a deeper look at the future of health care reform and health policies that impact the communities which we cover."

Conference Program Chair Andrea King Collier says, "Participants will leave with not only the latest information, but a whole host of experts to add to your "go to list" for future stories."  Collier says that the content is designed to change and expand the way that journalists cover health. "We work hard to give journalists access to the thought leaders in the field in order to help them shape fully formed stories on these important topics."

For program information and media inquiries regarding this conference, contact NABJ Director of Programs and Professional Development Ryan Williams at or 1-866-479-NABJ.  The conference is hosted by Kaiser Family Foundation, sponsored by Eli Lilly and Company and co-sponsored by the American Cancer Society and MedStar Health.

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