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Our 2014 Grassroots Partners: Making an Impact Every Day

Posted By on December 15th, 2014 at 12:26 pm | 0 comments.

Pat-with-grandchildren-at-Isaac's-for-PLYou walked. You trotted. You swam. You rode the trails. You even brewed pink beer. And ALL of you have made a difference. I’m talking about our PA Breast Cancer Coalition Grassroots Partners. It is because of your hard work, dedication, passion and creativity that we are able to reach out and provide help to thousands of women and men facing breast cancer across Pennsylvania.

– Since January 1, the PBCC has sent more than 564 free Friends Like Me care packages to recently diagnosed survivors full of educational materials, scarves, head wraps and small gifts.

– Last month, thanks to YOUR efforts, the PBCC and an anonymous donor awarded a $100,000 grant to Penn State Hershey breast cancer researcher Dr. Craig Meyers to continue his work to help find a cure for breast cancer now… so our daughters won’t have to.

– With your help, we are able to advocate for the women of Pennsylvania on legislation like the Breast Density Notification Act which was recently signed into law.

– Our incredible Grassroots Partners allow us to offer scholarships to breast cancer survivors who wish to attend our annual PBCC Conference in Harrisburg.

– Your fundraising efforts also help us to provide Patient Advocacy to women at a time when they need it most.

From the women battling breast cancer in our state, their families and the entire staff at the PA Breast Cancer Coalition, thank you. We hope you will continue this fight with us to find a cure for breast cancer now… so our daughters won’t have to.

Click on the video below to see photos from this year’s Grassroots Partners.

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Want to hold a fundraiser in your community?  Contact Kristen@PABreastCancer.org and become a PBCC Grassroots Partner today!

How Long Should Women Receive Radiation Treatment?

Posted By on December 15th, 2014 at 9:42 am | 0 comments.

A recent article in The Journal of the American Medical Association studied the use of radiation after a lumpectomy. This study was conducted by researchers Ezekial J. Emanuel and Justin E. Bekelman of the University of Pennsylvania and other colleagues. The group set out to examine a study done in 2011 which recommends shorter, more intense radiation treatments for women who were older than 50 that had early-stage cancers. What did they find?

Radiation-for-PL-2This recent study looked at two different groups of women: those who doctors recommended to receive shorter treatment (3-4 weeks of radiation) and a group of women who were younger and either had chemotherapy or more advanced cancer (5-7 weeks of radiation).
Both courses of treatment were found to have the same effectiveness, but the shorter version saved time for patients and saved money for the health care system and insurers.  Doctors did not readily adopt the new recommendations because it went against years of practice in the field.  In the 1970s and 1980s, the equipment was much less sophisticated and a shorter, more intense therapy burned women’s skin and scarred their breasts, but with the improved equipment and methodology of today, studies have found that the cosmetic results of the shorter therapy were just as good.

Overall, the study found that the use of the shorter therapy had increased from 2008 to 2013.
To read the complete article, click here.

Spiritual Strength Empowers Philadelphia Survivor, Advocate

Posted By on December 15th, 2014 at 9:42 am | 0 comments.

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Pamela Nanton, Philadelphia

One day in May 2005 while I was in the shower, I noticed a lump. I wasn’t really checking my breast. I just came across it. I went to the doctor and he said let’s get you in for a mammogram. I didn’t go, though. I kept on working my busy schedule and traveling for work. I had a trip planned to El Salvador and went back to the doctor for a check-up. He said, “I don’t see any mammogram results in your file yet.” So I finally went…

Every time I started to get dressed after the mammogram I would be called back in for more pictures. After three or four times I thought they didn’t know what they were doing. It never occurred to me that there was a problem.
Fear and ignorance kept me from returning the call to get the results. Several days later I got the news that it was breast cancer and that I should talk to a breast surgeon. The surgeon I met with was using words that were over my head and he just kept talking. I didn’t understand anything he said. In my head all I heard was white noise, like the sound of Charlie Brown’s teacher talking.
Thank God I had brought my girlfriend with me who took notes. I called my mom and she prayed for me. A friend of the family knew a surgeon in Atlanta where I was living at the time, and his amazing bedside manner made a big difference.
I needed my family around me. My mom came and stayed with me for ten days. On the 11th day my sister arrived. My mom was there for the surgery and my sister stayed while I was healing. It was all so surreal. I was really thrown when my hands turned black and the texture of the skin changed from the chemo. While I was in treatment I heard from two cousins who both said they had had breast cancer long ago. They never said anything until then.  I realized right then and there that I was going to be an advocate and be upfront about it. I’m a bold person. I wore my head bald for three months.
I come from a praying, spiritual family. My sister is a minister. I was reminded of Ecclesiastes: “There is a time to cry and a time to laugh.” I could ask Jesus “Why me?” but I tried to flip it around as often as possible and say “Why not me?”
For almost three years afterwards, my surgeon gave my phone number to newly diagnosed women. There’s a difference between sympathy and empathy. If you can empathize with me, that means you can understand me on a deeper level and I can talk with you. I think it’s important for us to be able to have that connection with one another … to say “Hey, I had that and I’m here to tell you that it’s been ten years.”

PA Motor Equipment Company Contributes Thousands in Support

Posted By on December 15th, 2014 at 9:42 am | 0 comments.

At Kenworth-of-PA-for-PLKenworth of Pennsylvania / Motor Truck Equipment Company, employees are driven to give back to their communities and help those in need. Leadership at this Cumberland County company decided to invite all employees to make a donation to the PBCC by way of payroll deduction, and company matched every gift—totaling an incredible gift of $7,620 to help survivors receive the resources and services needed to navigate their diagnosis!

The PBCC is overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from the owners and employees at Kenworth, and a special thanks goes out to Tonya Karcher, HR Manager for her work in organizing the first year of this fundraiser. Your thoughtfulness and hard work helps us continue on our mission to “find a cure now, so our daughter’s won’t have to.” Thank you for making a difference in the lives of breast cancer survivors and their families.
Would your company like to do a fundraiser for the PBCC?  Contact Kristen@PABreastCancer.org to get started.

Cuddle My Kids Gets Crafty with Families Facing Breast Cancer

Posted By on December 15th, 2014 at 9:42 am | 0 comments.

CMK-logoCuddle In-Home Creative Play programs provide enrichment and creative play for young children with parents battling cancer. A team of Program Administrators provide FREE, in-home support for 6 weeks/12 sessions (or more) incorporating organized activities such as arts, crafts, games, journaling, singing and other fun for young children. The in-home program is offered in Philadelphia and the surrounding counties (Montgomery, Delaware, Chester, Bucks) but other services are offered statewide, including the Backpacks Program.

The Cuddle Backpacks Program supports families with cancer through with CMK backpacks that are filled with keepsake craft items. These bags were designed for families who are not able to take advantage of the in-home support services. Cuddle Backpacks are given to children who have a parent or sibling with cancer.

For more information, visit www.CuddleMyKids.org

 

11.20.14: Join the PBCC for a Major Breast Cancer Research Announcement

Posted By on November 14th, 2014 at 7:56 am | 134 comments.

Pat HeadshotBy Pat Halpin-Murphy, President & Founder

The PA Breast Cancer Coalition is dedicated to finding a cure for breast cancer. To make that happen, we support researchers in Pennsylvania working every day to investigate the cause, improve treatment and ultimately find the cure for breast cancer. You’re invited to join us Thursday, November 20 at 10:30am at Penn State Hershey Medical Center as we make a major announcement of support for a breast cancer breakthrough right here in our backyard.

The announcement will be made in Penn State Hershey’s 2nd floor Media Center. Attendees can access the room through the main hospital entrance.

We hope you will be there as we move forward in our fight to end breast cancer together.

Be there… be part of history!

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67 Women, 67 Counties Exhibit Visits Centre, Fayette Communities

Posted By on November 14th, 2014 at 7:55 am | 113 comments.

lisa-rose-speaking-at-fayetteThis fall, the PBCC’s traveling photo exhibit 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania returned to Centre County and made its first appearance in Fayette County. Mount Nittany Medical Center’s Lance and Ellen Shaner Cancer Pavilion hosted the exhibit in Centre County. In Fayette, the exhibit traveled to Penn State University’s Eberly Campus. Survivors from both communities told their stories of hope and inspiration, sharing the importance of early detection.

Thank you to the committees in Centre and Fayette Counties for welcoming the PBCC and this important exhibit to your communities, and special thanks to the PA Department of Health for its continued support of 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania.

Click on the video below for a message from survivors in Centre and Fayette Counties:

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Registration Now Open for Free Affordable Care Act Webinar

Posted By on November 14th, 2014 at 7:54 am | 11 comments.

Affordable-care-act-webinar-for-PLNeed health insurance? Our free Webinar series continues Tuesday, December 2 at 7:00pm with everything you need to know about the Affordable Care Act.  This webinar, presented by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Regional Director Joanne Grossi, will detail the marketplace insurance choices available.  You will learn the key components and features of the Affordable Care Act.  We hope you can join us!

Ask questions, get answers!

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