PBS documentaries examine disparities in health, wellness

Who is healthier, a CEO or a janitor? What role does stress play? Race?

The School of Public Health and the Washtenaw County Department of Public Health are hosting several events to preview the new PBS documentary, "Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?"

On screen

The School of Public Health will host the following public screenings of "Unnatural Causes":

• Episode 1: 5-7 p.m. March 13, SPH II Auditorium

• Episodes 2-7, respectively, will be shown from noon-1:30 p.m. and 5-6:30 p.m. March 18, 19, 25, 26 and April 1 and 2. Episodes will air twice each day; noon-1:30 p.m. showings will be in the SPH I Auditorium (1755) and 5-6:30 p.m. showings in the SPH Lane Auditorium (1690)

The series examines the nation's alarming socio-economic and racial disparities in health, and searches for causes. PBS will nationally broadcast "Unnatural Causes" on four evenings beginning in late March (check local TV listings for specific dates and times).

Approximately 200 Washtenaw County community leaders on March 12 will preview the first segment, "In Sickness and in Wealth." The invitation-only event at the Michigan Theater is hosted by the Washtenaw County Public Health Department and the School of Public Health, Office of Public Health Practice.

After the viewing, audience members will have the chance to discuss their impressions with a panel of five community leaders from business, healthcare and academia. Talk show host Lucy Ann Lance, formerly of WAAM, will moderate the screening.

Remaining episodes that will air in three segments are: "When the Bough Breaks," "Becoming American," "Bad Sugar," "Place Matters," "Collateral Damage" and "Not Just a Paycheck."

Free screenings of the remaining segments, followed by community dialogues, are planned to coincide with the national broadcast of the documentary. They will take place from 6:30-8:30 p.m. March 20, 27 and April 3 at the downtown Ann Arbor District Library fourth floor meeting room.

Post screening discussions will be facilitated by professional health educators from the Washtenaw County Public Health Department.