Former Alabama Governor Robert Bentley - back practicing medicine after resigning from office - is offering free skin cancer screenings this weekend.
Bentley is the owner and only physician at Tuscaloosa-based Dermatology Care of Alabama. Since returning to medicine this summer, he has “treated hundreds of patients,” according to the practice’s website.
“We’ve had patients come into the office with everything from Basal Cell Carcinomas to the more serious Melanomas,” Bentley said. “Every day we are performing a number of biopsies. It’s been quite alarming to see.”
On Saturday, Bentley will offer free skin cancer screenings from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the clinic at 900 Veterans Memorial Parkway in Tuscaloosa.
“The most important thing to me, is making sure we get people in here and get checked,” Bentley said in a written release. “Skin cancer is very treatable, but you have to catch it early. Early detection is so important.”
If something of concern is noticed during the check, Bentley said, the patient will be referred to the doctor of their choosing.
The 74-year old former governor said the free screenings are part of a Serve Day project with the Church of the Highlands. Serve Day is a once a year statewide outreach program in which church members participate in a variety of community activities.
“This is a project close to my heart as a physician, and it’s a way for me to serve our community alongside my church family,” Bentley said.
Bentley resigned in April as part of plea deal related to campaign finance and ethics violations in connection to his relationship with former staffer Rebekah Caldwell Mason. His plea deal required him to perform 100 hours of community service as a doctor, as well as pay fines and restitution and agree never to seek public office again.
Bentley’s attorney said the he has fulfilled all the terms of his agreement except his community service hours.