Veteran NBC4 New York reporter and Brooklynite John Noel shares his personal story about the importance of going to the doctor
On Tuesday, October 2, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz launched his eleventh annual “Take Your Man to the Doctor” campaign—a call to action for men of all ages, ethnicities, and economic levels to regularly visit a doctor, and for the women and men who love them to help make it happen. Participating Brooklyn hospitals, clinics and healthcare professionals offered tests for blood pressure, diabetes, depression, glaucoma, HIV, Hepatitis C and pulmonary function.
In 2006, BP Markowitz learned firsthand the importance of regular checkups, early detection and preventative care when he experienced chest pains that resulted in an operation to insert a stent. He finally went to the hospital only after his wife Jamie insisted.
“As men and as Brooklynites—there’s nobody tougher—we’ve been taught to tough things out, but when it comes to our health, that attitude doesn’t work,” said BP Markowitz. “We can’t put off seeing the doctor until it’s too late. Let’s face it, when it comes to annual medical checkups, sometimes men need a little push and I’m the same way—something always takes priority: work, restaurants, meetings, you name it! In reality, real wealth is good health. And that’s why we’re here today to send a message loud and clear: men get to the doctor on a regular basis. And to the wives, husbands, and significant others, push that man you love in that direction. Whatever it takes, get him to the doctor.”
BP Markowitz was joined by Emmy Award-winning NBC4 NY reporter and Brooklynite John Noel. Last year, Noel sought medical attention after he realized that he felt ill but was unable to identify the cause. Noel was hospitalized and subsequently underwent surgery to remove a brain tumor, and is still undergoing treatments.
“It’s my daughter—who is nine years old—who regularly says, ‘Dad did you take your medicine?’ and I say, ‘Yes I did,’ said Noel. “She also says, ‘Dad are you going to go on the elliptical trainer tonight?’ My daughter is the one who makes sure that I’m working out and taking my medicine, and I don’t feel like I’m being nagged. So whomever is important to you in your life, go right ahead and make sure they are taking care of themselves.”
According to a 2011 study conducted by the Canadian Medical Association Journal, on average, married male heart attack victims arrived at the hospital half an hour sooner than those who were not married, and married men were more than 60 percent less likely to arrive late than their single peers.
The 2010 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report found that Hispanic and Black men were less likely than White men to have access to a physician. The report shows that Black patients were about four percent less likely to have a usual primary care provider, and an even higher disparity of approximately 15 percent for Hispanics.
The U.S Department of Health and Human Services recommends that men receive regular screenings for such things as blood cholesterol, blood pressure, colorectal cancer, diabetes, depression, sexually transmitted diseases and prostate cancer.
BP Markowitz was joined at the kickoff event by the Brooklyn Nets Mobile Experience and participating “Take Your Man to the Doctor” partners: Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center; The Brooklyn Hospital Center; Coney Island Hospital; Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center; Kings County Hospital Center; Maimonides Medical Center; MetroPlus Heath Plan, Inc.; New York City Department of Health; New York Methodist Hospital; Preferred Health Partners; SUNY Downstate Medical Center; SUNY Downstate Medical Center University Hospital of Brooklyn at Long Island College Hospital; and Woodhull Medical Center.