Sparks firm helps uninsured |

Sparks firm helps uninsured

John Seelmeyer

A Sparks-based manufacturer of

health-screening equipment is part of

an initiative in Mississippi to improve

the health care of people who don’t

have sufficient health insurance.

Computer Screening Inc. health

stations have been placed in five locations

including several grocery

stores around Hinds County, Miss.

The company in 1978 began making

blood-pressure monitors that consumers

could use themselves during

visits to retailers.

Since 2000, it’s made a monitor

called HealthNet that provides information

about blood pressure, heart

rate, evaluation of weight, fitness and

health risks and health-education


Here’s how Mississippi health officials

will use the system made

in Sparks:

Four hospitals in Hinds County

Jackson is the county’s big city

are helping to identify county residents

who don’t have adequate health

insurance. So far, about 1,000 people

have enrolled, and county officials

expect that 2,500 will participate by

the end of the year.

They’re directed to one of the CSI

health stations and encouraged to use

the station regular to monitor their

health. Mississippi officials hope that

participants then will

manage their

health care,

rather than

waiting until a

crisis arises that

requires an expensive trip

to an emergency room.

Health officials, meanwhile, will

analyze group data collected through

the program. They’ll be looking for

patterns of disease among groups of

people or locations.

“We expect that the CSI health

stations will provide residents with

the tools and resource information

that make prevention an easy alternative

to disease,” said Dr. Aaron

Shirley, director of community health

service in the county. “At the same

time, we can examine trends and

monitor changes in health status over


And the privately held CSI said the

Mississippi initiative fits closely with

its corporate philosophy.

“We believe that if people have

access to the tools and the information

they need to assess their health and

determine their health risks, individuals

will be proactive in managing their

health,” said Charles Blush, the company’s

founder and chief executive.

CPI goal, he said, is to help create

a society that is oriented to prevention

and wellness rather than disease


The company employs about 50

people nationwide including 25 at

its headquarter and manufacturing

operation at 1395 Greg St.

CSI holds four patents for technology

and devices that comprise its

health station. Among CPI corporate

clients are Hewlett-Packard, Boeing,

and Blue Cross-Blue Shield.