The major purpose of health fairs is to detect common health problems like hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol. These diseases may lead to serious health problems if not detected at an early stage. On an average, 10 to 15 individuals are identified who are in need of medical care. Such patients are referred to physicians in the community, public hospitals, or Al-Shifa Clinic.
These health fairs are held in different locations in Dallas/Fort Worth Metropolitan area. Several health fairs have been held mainly in the mosques and community centers. In 2003, MCCHS organized a health fair jointly sponsored by area churches, and 25% of the participants were non-Muslim. It was the first interfaith event of its kind in this area. During the health fairs, MCCHS offers the tests for blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels, medical consultation, pediatric exam, dental and eye exam, etc. Lectures on different topics including heart disease, diabetes and cancer are given. Many individuals make use of the opportunity to discuss and get professional advice on physical or emotional issues. For the last two years, MCCHS has been holding health fairs twice a year. One is in South Dallas in conjunction with the Humanitarian Day initiative (humanitarianday.com). It primarily serves the indigent African-American residents of the area irrespective of religious affiliation. The other health fair is usually held in one of the Islamic centers, and all the area residents are encouraged to take advantage of the free screening services. More recently MCCHS also participated in the health fair organized by Dallas County Department of Health as a part of the commemoration of Kwanza.
In addition to physicians, medical and nursing students also help in the health fair. Several agencies such as the American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, the Public Health Department, Red Cross and other agencies provide educational material. During the health fairs several participants also donate blood and female participants register for mammogram.