The National Minority Health Association will be Joined by Toni Braxton & the Lupus Community
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Equity for All Make The Invisible Visible 1 By Quana Madison Make The Invisible Visible 2 By Quana Madison Make The Invisible Visible 3 By Quana Madison Make The Invisible Visible 4 By Quana Madison National Minority Health Assn
Kick Off Lupus Call to Action Day in NYC on May 1st Live at NYU Langone Health

NEW YORK - Californer -- Health care stakeholders come together to drive awareness and enact change to improve health equity:

Toni Braxton, award-winning singer, songwriter, actress, producer, and entrepreneurwill share her personal journey to empower people with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE or Lupus) and Lupus Nephritis (LN) to prioritize their kidney health.

Renowned thought leaders will share best practices to:

o Promote timely access to care for ALL people living with Lupus or suspected of having Lupus and routine screening for people living with Lupus for renal involvement

o Encourage health care providers to identify the earliest signs and symptoms of SLEand LN, and swiftly refer patients to Rheumatology and/or Nephrology for appropriate diagnostic workups.

o Provide ALL people living with SLE/LN in NYC with education on advanced and complex therapies and clinical trial opportunities.

Educational events will occur throughout the US in honor of Lupus Awareness Month(May).

The National Minority Health Association (NMHA), in collaboration with members of the Lupus community, declare May 1, 2024, as Lupus Call to Action Day in NYC. The event will be held at the Murphy Auditorium at NYU Langone Health, marking a pivotal step in the NMHA's "Equity for All" campaign aimed at addressing healthcare disparities, enhancing understanding of SLE and LN disease management, and fostering empathy and trust among health care professionals and patients.

This live event, scheduled from 1pm to 3pm EST, is invite only. The program will highlight the lived experience of Lupus patients and feature expert insights by Dr. Amit Saxena MD, MSCI, Associate Professor, Director of Lupus Department of Medicine at NYU Grossman School of Medicine; Dr. Anca Dinu-Askanase, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and Founder of the Columbia University Irving Medical Center; andDr. Jill Buyon MD, Sir Deryck and Lady Va Maughan Professor of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, Co-Director, Colton Center for Autoimmunity, Directorof the Division of Rheumatology and Director of Lupus Center. The program will also include a panel discussion on health equity's impact on NYC's Lupus patients.

Drs. Anca Askanase and Amit Saxena will highlight the critical need for targeted campaigns to address health disparities in SLE and LN, especially among lower socio-economic populations, women and communities of color disproportionately affected by this disease. The NMHA's initiative aligns with both city and state efforts to declare May as Lupus Awareness Month, emphasizing a collective commitment to health equity.

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A celebrity interview with Toni Braxton, in partnership with Aurinia Pharmaceuticals, will underscore the importance of community support, testing and awareness. "Getting routine urine tests and seeing a doctor regularly is so important because up to 30 percent of people with Lupus who have kidney involvement will experience kidney failure," says Toni Braxton, "especially women of color, who are more likely to be affected by Lupus Nephritis." About 1 out of 2 people with Lupus develop LN over time. Black and Asian women are four times more likely to develop LN.  Hispanic and Native American women are twice as likely.

To ensure the Black community is educated about Lupus, (BDO) plans to livestream this important program. (BDO) is one of the leading and most trusted health platforms for Black consumers, reaching a total audience of 20 million people (about the population of New York), with six million monthly website visitors. BDO leverages culture, content, and technology to improve health outcomes for Black consumers.

In partnership with multiple organizations including Healthfirst, Lupus Research Alliance, Global Healthy Living Foundation, and the thought leaders from NYU and NYP; the NMHA seeks to improve outcomes for those living with Lupus through education, advocacy, and research. With support from UCB, Biogen,and Aurinia Pharmaceuticals, this Lupus Call to Action Day is an important moment in the ongoing battle against SLE and LN in the pursuit of equitable healthcare for all.

"It is exciting to see leading health care institutions, renowned thought leaders, patient organizations, payers, and pharmaceutical manufacturers in rheumatology, joining forces with the NMHA in this innovative effort to raise awareness and improve outcomes for people living with Lupus, their caregivers and health care providers. "This group of stakeholders has pooled their collective expertise and resources to make this monumental event as impactful as possible," said Donna Finale, US Sustainability Lead, UCB.  Our hope is that health systems adopt best practices to improve access to care and medications and policy makers continue in their efforts that support Lupus, Lupus Nephritis, and other chronic diseases that disproportionally impact the lower socio-economic populations" continued Finale.

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SLE manifests itself differently in people. So, too, health does art touch each of us in a unique and personal manner. The program has harnessed the power and impact of art through a newly commissioned painting by internationally noted artist Quana Madison ( "Quana's art will be used as a catalyst for conversation, empathy, and reflection, as it relates to Lupus and helps foster greater patient/physician/community conversation and connections," said Burgess Harrison, Executive Director, NMHA.

The event is hosted by National Minority Health Association, Global Healthy Living Foundation,HealthFirst, Lupus Research Alliance, Get Uncomfortable, and NYU with support from UCB,  Aurinia Pharmaceuticals, Biogen, and Sage Growth Partners.

Additional events will be occurring throughout the month through the Lupus and Allied Diseases Association (LADA), Lupus Research Alliance (LRA), and Lupus Foundation of America(LFA).

About the NMHA: The National Minority Health Association is a 501c3 non-profit organization founded in 1988. The NMHA delivers on its mission of health equity through innovative programs including, Equity for All, Health is for EveryBODY™ ( ), Operation Healthy You™, Equityville™, and The Art Alliance, to name a few. The lack of health equity in underserved, marginalized, and hard-to-reach communities translates into lost lives, adverse health outcomes, higher costs, diminished productivity, and declines in quality of life and well-being for everyone. For more information visit

John Gonda

Source: National Minority Health Association
Filed Under: Education, Health, Non-profit

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