October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month; Cancer Services Program Screens the Uninsured

Modified: October 6, 2017 2:45pm

10/06/2017

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PRESS RELEASE

From the Office of the Commissioner of Health, Dr. Gale R. Burstein

Date: October 6, 2017                

CONTACT: Mary C. St. Mary/Mary.StMary@Erie.Gov

Phone: 716.858.4941/ Mobile: 716.253.3925

 

OCTOBER IS BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

Cancer Services Program Screens the Uninsured 

ERIE COUNTY, NY— Every year in New York State, nearly 15,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer and approximately 2,700 women die from the disease. These women are our wives, mothers, sisters, and friends.

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The Erie County Department of Health (“ECDOH”) Cancer Services Program (“CSP”) provides free breast screening with mammography, diagnostics and access to treatment through a network of over 100 health care providers across Erie County, including many private practice locations.  Services are available to uninsured individuals, as well as those underinsured who may have a high deductible plan with unaffordable out of pocket costs. 

Breast cancer is most commonly found in women 50 years old or older. The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends a mammogram every two years for women between 50 and 74 years of age. Women ages 40–49 years old are encouraged to talk to their health care provider about when and how often they should receive a screening mammogram. Any woman who is at high risk for breast cancer may need to begin screening earlier. Any woman or man, who has symptoms or changes in their breasts, should schedule an appointment with their health care provider immediately. While very rare, it is possible for men to develop breast cancer.

Michelle Wysocki, Program Director of the Erie County CSP, urges all women to talk to their health care provider about breast cancer screening and their personal risk for the disease. “A woman’s best chance for survival is finding breast cancer early through regularly scheduled mammograms,” says Wysocki. “Our program has literally helped thousands of women access breast cancer screening since its inception in 1992.” Anyone with questions about eligibility or other questions about Erie County’s Cancer Services Program can call 716-858-7376 or visit their website at www.cspwny.org .

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among African-American women and their second leading cause of death in the United States.  Survival rates among African-American women are lower than those of white (Caucasian) women. Contributing factors may include African-American women present at diagnosis with larger, more aggressive, tumors; are diagnosed with breast cancer at a more advanced stage; and encountering barriers to care.

 

During October, Erie County CSP will be presenting dinners and presentations on Breast Cancer Facts for the African-American Woman, supported by a generous Susan G. Komen Upstate NY grant. These outreach events, held in collaboration with local organizations, aim to spread this important wellness and possible life-saving messages to their community. Event details:

 

Program

Details

Date & Time

Location

RSVP to:

Hattie McDaniel Cancer Initiative: Breast Cancer Knowledge for the African-American Woman

Sigma Gamma Rho

dinner & beverages served

Monday, Oct. 16th

5:30-7:00pm

East Community Campus Parent Center

820 Northampton St.

Buffalo

LaShawn Chinn

716-970-8333

Breast Cancer Knowledge for the African-American Woman

Phenominal Xpressions

dinner & beverages served

Thursday, Oct. 19th

5:30-7:00pm

517 Main St.

Buffalo

Cancer Services Program

716-858-7376

Breast Cancer Knowledge for the African-American Woman

Buffalo Public Community Schools

dinner & beverages served

Monday, Oct. 23rd 

5:30-7:00pm

Bennett Community Campus Parent Center

2885 Main St.

Buffalo

Cancer Services Program

716-858-7376

 

“Each woman needs to be aware of her personal risk for breast cancer and make an informed decision with her doctor about when and how often she should be screened," said Dr. Gale Burstein, Erie County Commissioner of Health. “A mammogram is a quick, safe, and relatively painless screening exam.  It can detect small masses and other forms of breast disease that may be too small or deep to be felt by even an experienced health professional.”

Although some women have certain risk factors that may increase their chance of developing breast cancer--most do not. Recommended screening is so vitally important for all women 40 years and older.

"Great advances have been made in early detection and treatment of breast cancer and many women diagnosed with the disease are living long, healthy lives," concluded Burstein.

Contact the Erie County Cancer Services Program at 716-858-7376, or visit their website at www.cspwny.org for additional information.

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For More Information:

Erie County Department of Health

Erie County Cancer Services Program

New York State Cancer Services Program