Kaiser Permanente's Good Health & Great Hair Program: Partnering With Barbershops and Beauty Salons to Advance Health Equity in West Baltimore, Maryland

J Public Health Manag Pract. 2022 Mar-Apr;28(2):E369-E379. doi: 10.1097/PHH.0000000000001381.


Context: The Good Health & Great Hair program was developed by Kaiser Permanente in partnership with a network of trusted neighborhood barbershops and beauty salons in West Baltimore, Maryland.

Program: The initiative aimed to increase health awareness and knowledge and reduce health disparities by making no-cost health care services available beyond traditional health care settings in predominantly Black, historically redlined neighborhoods in West Baltimore.

Implementation: This initiative, established by an integrated health care system, is the first to utilize mobile health clinics into a holistic community health outreach program in partnership with barbershops and beauty salons to provide medical and social services to underserved populations. In addition to the mobile health clinics, key features of this program included lay first responder trainings on topics of physical and behavioral health, on-site medical and social services offered by community partners, and culturally relevant mental health programming. The majority of participants (n = 1823) were male (58%), Black (86%), and between the ages of 45 and 64 years (51%).

Evaluation: Data presented include the number of clinical and social services provided. More than 8000 clinical and social services were provided between September 2016 and March 2020. Blood pressure (n = 2317), diabetes (n = 469), tobacco (n = 448), and cholesterol (n = 443) were the most accessed clinical screening services. The median number of clinical services provided per client was 2. Fitness (n = 1496), job search support (n = 1123), mental health (n = 603), and health insurance (n = 455) were the most accessed social services.

Discussion: The initiative delivered critical health and social support services through a partnership with an established integrated health care system, community barbershops and beauty salons, a mobile health team, and social supports. This novel program utilized a mobile health clinic to provide extensive clinical services complemented by on-site social services. Patterns of service utilization and lessons learned could inform the design of similar programs.

MeSH terms

  • Baltimore
  • Beauty
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated*
  • Female
  • Health Equity*
  • Health Promotion
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged