DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) – Bethune-Cookman University is partnering with a Daytona Beach hospital to hold free sickle cell screenings.

B-CU announced this week that its Petrock College of Health Sciences is joining with Halifax Heath to offer the bi-monthly screenings at Odessa Chambliss Health Center. All screenings are free and open to the public.

The school says it is offering the screenings in an effort to increase awareness of sickle cell and improve health care options for those at risk. The school says research indicates that more than 60 percent of Volusia County residents could be at risk of carrying the sickle cell gene.

Screenings will be held the second Thursday and third Friday of each month.