October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is not only a time be aware of breast cancer, but it’s an opportunity to learn more about the proactive steps women can take to protect themselves.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC):
- Breast cancer is the most common cancer among adult women in the United States, and the second leading cause of death from cancer among women.
- One out of every eight adult women will get breast cancer in her lifetime.
- The risk of breast cancer increases with age.
- Although White women are the most likely to get breast cancer, Black women have the highest mortality rate.
What can you do to make a difference in the fight against breast cancer?
1. For women 40 and older, consider getting a mammogram. Early detection means that treatment can begin earlier in the course of the disease, possibly before it has spread to other parts of the body. According to National Cancer Institute (NCI), studies show that screening with mammography can help reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer among women ages 40 to 74, especially for those over age 50. So, if you are in your 40s, ask your health care provider whether you should get a mammogram. If you are 50 or older, consider scheduling a mammogram today. For more information about mammography, please visit: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Detection/mammograms.
2. Get involved. There are many local and national organizations working to raise awareness about breast cancer. A number of breast cancer organizations participate in the State Employee Responding as Volunteers (SERV) program and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Employee Charitable Campaign (COMECC). Consider donating your time, or making a monetary contribution to a reputable organization.
There is some good news to report. National health care reform, or the Affordable Care Act (ACA), requires that by 2014 group health plans cannot require co-pays for preventative services, including breast cancer screenings. This is an important reflection of increased awareness about preventative care and provides us with a preview of how national health care reform will have a profound positive impact on all Americans, including residents of the Commonwealth.
A Taste of India for Special Occasions! posted on Mar 27
At WIC, we are very fortunate to have so many staff members from different countries and cultures. In this week’s blog, Kinnari Chitalia, RD, LDN, CLC, Nutritionist at the Dorchester North WIC Program, shares a favorite recipe that can be made at any time, but …Continue Reading A Taste of India for Special Occasions!
Working to Eliminate Health Disparities Among LGBT People posted on Mar 27
This week marks the commemoration of National LGBT Health Awareness Week. At DPH this is not only an occasion to celebrate the strides that we as a Commonwealth have made in reducing disparities in health care and health outcomes among people who identify as lesbian, …Continue Reading Working to Eliminate Health Disparities Among LGBT People
Weekly Flu Report, March 27, 2015 posted on Mar 27
The latest weekly flu report shows a slight decrease in rates of flu-like illness in the Commonwealth over the past seven days, which is consistent with what we would expect to see at this point of flu season. Flu does however continue to be present …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, March 27, 2015