The Men’s Health Initiative is a venture of the Center for Healthful Behavior Change at the New York University School of Medicine funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  It is a collaborative strategy to battle the two leading causes of death among Black men over 50: colorectal cancer and hypertension (high blood pressure).  The Men’s Health Initiative consists of two community-based research studies: Mister B and FAITH-CRC.

Both MISTER-B and FAITH-CRC are projects working to assess community-based approaches to treating hypertension and colorectal cancer, two of the leading causes of death among Black men.

Eligible men must be 50 years or older and self-identify as “of African descent”. They must also have elevated high blood pressure at the time of their screening and not have had a colonoscopy in the last 10 years, or any other type of colorectal cancer screening within the last year. Men who meet these criteria and are interested in participating first complete an interview, which includes questions about their health and lifestyle.

Participants are enrolled in the study for 6 months. Throughout the study period they will receive telephone-based counseling sessions aimed at lowering their blood pressure, administered by our trained Motivational Interviewers, or guidance through the colon cancer screening process with the help of our trained Patient Navigators. Some individuals may receive both of these interventions. After 6 months, we meet with the participants again to take their blood pressure again and  complete a follow-up interview.

We hope that through uniting with barbershops and faith-based organizations, we can develop new ways to combat the undue burden of high blood pressure and colorectal cancer among Black men. Our aim is to inspire people to lead healthier lives. You can help us.