Dunbar pharmacist wants to bring Black health and wellness to the forefront

Writer: Drew Hill
Published: Updated:
Dr. Shedreka McIntosh
Dr. Shedreka McIntosh Credit: WINK News

One doctor says it’s her goal to uplift her community and her neighbors’ health all at the same time.

A Dunbar Pharmacist is more than ready to help her community. Dr. Shedreka McIntosh is on a mission. “Our whole mission is to be accessible here to the people of this community. Because before we existed, there was no pharmacy here in this community,” said Dr. McIntosh.

For this doctor, health and wellness hit close to home. Why? Well, because this is her home. “I’m from here. I go back four generations, grew up pretty much across the street from here,” Dr. McIntosh said.

So, because this is her home, she built her pharmacy, Sozo Wellness, right where she grew up. Now, she gets to help others in the community she was raised in.

When people see that there’s somebody that looks like them, or that they can possibly relate to culturally, it just helps to bring down barriers and open up access,” said Dr. McIntosh. “Which also kind of gives way to helping people improve their health care outcomes.”

Health and wellness have become the focus of Black History Month in 2022. Rashawn Brewster is a family and marriage therapist. “The Black community is really seeing a rise in depression and anxiety and a pretty alarming rate. We’re talking about current status and about, you know, a 20% increase in that community,” said Brewster. 

Companies like Sozo Wellness on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd aim to improve wellness, especially in the Black community.

“If we can really get to the heart of the causes, the social causes and the cultural causes of health disparities and try to attack those things and solve those problems. I really do believe that the health and wellness of the black community would improve overall, and that will definitely do great for our community as a whole,” said Dr. McIntosh.

Brewster says self-care is vital for Black health and wellness as well. The Sozo Wellness Pharmacy is open Monday through Friday in Dunbar.

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