Urologists drive across America to raise men’s health awareness
By Brett Dworski
A white Tesla covered in decals rolled up in fashion to the corner of Dearborn and Grand avenues last Wednesday afternoon. Observers glanced, appearing perplexed, as if James Bond were parking the flashy vehicle. Two men in hospital scrubs came out instead.
Sijo Parekattil, MD, co-director of Personalized Urology & Robotics (PUR) clinic in Clermont, Florida owns the Tesla. Alongside PUR co-director Jamin Brahmbhatt, MD, the two physicians are partaking in their second TESLA Drive for Men’s Health, a cross-country tour to increase men’s health awareness and encourage its prioritization.
When all is said and done, they will have covered 6,000 miles in only 10 days.
It all began when men fawning over Parekattil’s Tesla would approach him, interested in talking about the car, which, at that time hadn’t been decorated in promotional decals. Eventually, the conversation turned into more than just the vehicle itself
“The conversations would start about the Tesla, but shift to what they do for a living and other facts about their lives,” Brahmbhatt says. “A light bulb went off in our heads one day, and we thought, ‘Let’s use the car as a magnet to attract men to talk about their health.’”
Brahmbhatt and Parekattil hold events in each city they drive through, discussing a variety of men’s health topics, ranging from testicular and prostate cancer, hernias and male infertility to eating healthy and getting more sleep.
Parekattil says they wanted to create helpful, fun events for men in order for them to be more aware of their health.
“We want guys to go see their doctors on a more frequent basis,” he says. “Guys are really good at maintaining their cars but lack in maintaining their health. We try to make ourselves approachable when discussing what guys sometimes feel hesitant to talk about.”
Brahmbhatt also says they find it interesting that most guys will remember their first car type and model but won’t remember when they last visited their last doctor.
“If we can change the lives of a few guys and influence them to prioritize doctors’ appointments more, we’ve achieved our goal,” he says.