Archive for the ‘Press Release’ Category

President’s Corner: American Cancer Society Clarifies Mammogram Recommendations

Posted By on January 15th, 2016 at 10:03 am | 0 comments.

patheadshotforplby Pat Halpin-Murphy, President and Founder

You may recall, in October, the American Cancer Society (ACS) issued new mammography guidelines which raised concerns, especially for us here at the PA Breast Cancer Coalition. The ACS recommendations suggest women begin annual mammograms at age 45 and every other year beginning at age 55. The PA Breast Cancer Coalition believes that starting mammograms at 40 is the gold standard. Another concern with the ACS recommendations was the possibility that insurance companies could use the guidelines as an opportunity to eliminate free mammograms for many women.

We know that Pennsylvania insurance agency representatives have already indicated their desire to roll back PA’s guarantee of free mammograms for state-insured women.

In response, Dr. Richard Wender, Chief Cancer Control Officer for the American Cancer Society sent a letter addressing our concerns to the PA Secretary of Health and PA Insurance Commissioner, clarifying the intent of the latest mammography guidelines.

Dr-Wender-quote-2The letter further explains the ACS recommendations, stressing the importance of a woman’s consultation with her doctor. The PBCC applauds and thanks the American Cancer Society for adressing these concerns, for providing a more in-depth explanation of its screening guidelines and for making it clear that they, in no way, support removing current insurance coverage for women 40 to 45 in our state.

Read the complete letter from Dr. Richard Wender on behalf of the American Cancer Society here.

UPDATE: The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force released its latest mammography guidelines, recommending women begin screening at age 50. The PBCC strongly diagrees. Click here to read our press release.

PBCC President and Founder Pat Halpin-Murphy responds to breakthrough breast cancer study

Posted By on September 24th, 2012 at 2:38 pm | 1429 comments.

Researchers have unveiled what they believe is a hallmark study for breast cancer patients and the doctors who treat them. Their findings, published Sunday in the journal Nature and the New York Times, are expected to pave the way for new treatment options in the coming years.

The project, funded by a larger federal grant, focused on a genetic analysis of breast cancer, which kills more than 12,000 women in Pennsylvania each year.  The scientists monitored the tumors of 825 breast cancer patients in the US. As a result, they found four distinctive types of breast cancer. Within those types, researchers say they identified at least 40 genetic alterations that might be attacked by drugs. Many of those drugs are already being developed for other types of cancers with the same mutations.

Researchers and patient advocates stress that it could still take years of research and clinical trials to incorporate the insights into new treatments. They say a wide variety of drugs will most likely need to be created and tailored to individual tumor types.

“This is a tremendous new development that will alter the way women with breast cancer are treated,” said PBCC President and Founder Pat Halpin-Murphy. “Of course, this is the first step, but I believe it’s the first step toward a cure for many types of breast cancer.”

The four types identified in the study are basal-like cancers, luminal A and B cancers, and HER2-enriched cancers. From here, doctors and researchers are hoping clinical trials and dozens of separate drug studies will help to develop new breakthroughs in treatment from the findings. Dr. Elizabeth Stark, a breast cancer patient and biochemist at Pfizer, says she knows it will take time, but she’s hopeful the research will lead to a cure. “In 10 years, it will be different,” she said. “I know I will be here in 10 years.”

To read the complete New York Times Article, visit this link: NY Times Article

To read the complete journal Nature study, visit this link: journal Nature study

The PA Breast Cancer Coalition represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to. For more information, please call 800-377-8828 or visit www.PABreastCancer.org.

Go PINK at Pocono Promotes Breast Cancer Education and Early Detection

Posted By on June 22nd, 2012 at 9:52 am | 5318 comments.

For Immediate Release
June 22, 2012

For PA Breast Cancer Coalition:
Heather Hibshman, 717-721-2580
For The Martel Group:
Rob Ziemba, 717-480-8610

Harrisburg, Pa. – The summer heat of August may be three months away — but a new fundraising partnership is already burning up the pavement for a statewide non-profit organization. The PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) recently teamed up with Lebanon-based Bill Martel Racing to promote breast cancer awareness and education at the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountain 125 and The Pennsylvania ARCA 125 – Presented by Menard’s. These events will take place during the first weekend of August at The Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, PA.

Go Pink at Pocono benefits the PA Breast Cancer Coalition and event organizers are searching for supporting sponsors to join them in victory lane. Multiple sponsorship levels are available and include race car and race truck logos, event tickets, pit tours, driver meet-and-greets and more! Inaugural Go Pink at Pocono race t-shirts will also be for sale and are sure to be a hit. Race veteran Kyle Martel of Lebanon will drive one-of-a-kind pink vehicles during two events at the Pocono Raceway.

“This unique event will take the message of breast cancer awareness and early detection to thousands of Pennsylvania families,” said Pat Halpin-Murphy, president and founder of the PBCC. “We are extremely grateful to Bill Martel Racing for joining forces with the PBCC.”

“We are both honored and excited to promote the PBCC at one of the most visible races in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series – and for one of the best causes in Pennsylvania,” said Rob Ziemba, V.P. Sales and Marketing for Bill Martel Racing and The Martel Group. “The winner will be the PBCC because the money stays in Pennsylvania.”

Ziemba concluded by saying “we are racing for a reputable Pennsylvania organization and have the right race team and driver in place to help raise as much money and awareness as we can. We want to cross the finish line with the PBCC and do our part to help find a cure for breast cancer now…so our daughters won’t have to.” 

To sponsor Go Pink at Pocono, and to request additional information, please contact Rob Ziemba at rziemba@hanovercoldstorage.net. For more information about Bill Martel Racing, visit www.kylemartel.com.

The PBCC represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to. For information call 800-377-8828 or visit www.PABreastCancer.org.

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The PA Breast Cancer Coalition Showcases Traveling Photo Exhibit In Luzerne County at Hazleton Health & Wellness Center

Posted By on June 15th, 2012 at 10:24 am | 2137 comments.

PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 14, 2012

Contact:   Jennifer Pensinger
Program Director
610-763-5937
717-721-2580 x101

HAZLETON, Pa.The PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) announces its partnership with the Luzerne County Exhibit Committee to bring its traveling photo exhibit, 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania, to the Hazleton Health and Wellness Center from June 14th through June 24th.

Pat Halpin-Murphy, president and founder of the PBCC, encourages everyone to visit the exhibit. “Breast cancer is not a rare event separate from the fabrics of our everyday lives. It impacts our mothers, daughters and friends. We must educate ourselves about this disease and fight to find a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to.”

“We are very happy to have been given the honor to host the exhibit. It further reinforces the importance of breast cancer awareness and early detection as key components in fighting breast cancer,” said Jim Edwards, President/CEO of the Greater Hazleton Health Alliance. “This exhibit also compliments the Women’s Services, including digital mammography, that we provide at the Hazleton Health & Wellness Center and the already established events that we host every October during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.”

An opening reception is scheduled for Thursday, June 14th at 6 p.m. The exhibit and reception are FREE and open to the public. To RSVP for the opening reception, please call 800-377-8828 x304. 

This work of art features women from each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties, along with a message about how breast cancer has touched their lives. The women reflect the diversity of Pennsylvania, and their stories show the impact of breast cancer on themselves, their families and their communities. The exhibit encourages women to learn about early detection and celebrates life, courage, hope and the dignity of women and families who have battled breast cancer. 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania is sponsored by the PBCC and funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

The PBCC represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to. For more information, please call 800-377-8828 or visit www.PABreastCancer.org.

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New book a compilation of stories about life and hope with breast cancer

Posted By on November 8th, 2011 at 9:54 am | 430 comments.

2011 PA Breast Cancer Coalition ConferenceHARRISBURG, Pa. – “Pink Ribbon Stories: A Celebration of Life” (ISBN 978-0-9701379-7-5) by 10-year breast cancer survivor Tammy Miller offers hope and laughter from personal stories of battling breast cancer. Miller compiled over 120 entries from women and men whose lives have been touched by breast cancer.

Throughout her own diagnosis, Miller used her sense of humor on her journey. She went through her first breast cancer surgery wearing a clown nose and shoes while carrying a kazoo. For her second, she wore a pink feather boa. Miller’s sense of humor and optimism made her journey a memorable one for those around her.

Referencing “Pink Ribbon Stories,” Miller says “there are stories that will warm your heart; make you laugh; cause you to pause for reflection; and others that simply tell a story of a courageous journey through life. There are words and stories to encourage, inspire and make you smile. This book is one way I can show those who are battling breast cancer that they are not alone.”

“Pink Ribbon Stories: A Celebration of Life” is available online at http://pbcc.me/PinkRibbonStories or through your favorite e-reader’s store. Proceeds benefit the PA Breast Cancer Coalition.

About the Author:

Tammy Miller is an international speaker, author and speech coach. Her speaking topics include humor and healing, presentation and communication skills, brain aerobics, motivation and achieving goals. She is the owner of Tammy Speaks, LLC of Port Matilda, PA, and she enjoys helping others build their communication skills and achieve their goals in life. As an author, Tammy has written, “The Lighter Side of Breast Cancer Recovery,” about her personal journey of using humor to deal with her cancer diagnosis. And, “My Life is Just Speech Material… And, So is Yours,” is a valuable guide to discovering what to say and how to say it with your next presentation. She can be reached at www.tammyspeaks.com.

The PBCC represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to. For more information, please call 800-377-8828 or visit www.PABreastCancer.org.

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Media Contact: Kevin Smith
717-721-2580 x109
Kevin@PABreastCancer.org

PA Breast Cancer Coalition Gives Additional $100,000 Grant to Continue Cutting Edge Research

Posted By on October 11th, 2011 at 3:34 pm | 1352 comments.

HARRISBURG, Pa. – The PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) gave an additional $100,000 research grant to Dr. Craig Meyers and his team at Penn State College of Medicine today. The announcement came at the 2011 PA Breast Cancer Coalition Conference held at the Hilton Harrisburg attended by over 1,000 people. This grant marks the single-largest research contribution made by the PBCC in its 18-year history and it follows a 2007 PBCC Pennsylvania Income Tax Refund for Research grant of $35,000 to Dr. Meyers.

Through this PBCC funded research, Dr. Meyers discovered that adeno-associated virus type 2 (AAV2) kills breast cancer cells in every stage in the laboratory in tissue culture dishes. AAV2 is a nondisease-causing virus that kills human breast cancer cells and often infects humans. Preliminary research using AAV2 to treat breast cancer cells in a mouse model has also yielded promising results but needs further study.

“I’ve been working with this significant nondisease-causing virus that kills human breast cancer cells in the laboratory because we know that breast cancer has a complex structure and differing types,” said Dr. Craig Meyers, professor of microbiology and immunology at Penn State College of Medicine.

Referring to these exciting new findings as, “what, for decades, the medical community has worked towards and the rest of the world has been waiting for,” Pat Halpin-Murphy, president and founder of the PBCC said that her pioneering organization is thrilled to be part of Dr. Meyers’discovery of a virus that kills all stages and all types of breast cancer cells in the laboratory.

“Breast cancer survivors, their families, and all girls and women and those that care for them look forward to the final phase of this research–clinical trials with humans. While that final step may still be years away, it gives us hope that we will discover a cure so our daughters and granddaughters won’t have to. Dr. Meyers’ break-through is a real-world example that research is our best weapon in battling breast cancer,” added Halpin-Murphy.

Halpin-Murphy went on to say that “each day, 32 women in Pennsylvania are diagnosed with breast cancer and over 2,000 die every year from the devastating disease.”

“We are extremely grateful to the Coalition for their generous support of Dr. Meyers’ research,” said Richard J. Courtney, Ph.D., chair, Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Penn State College of Medicine. “The recent findings of his research group are very exciting; however, much additional research remains to be done. This grant will be instrumental in helping Dr. Meyers and his colleagues to further advance this highly promising breast cancer research ongoing within his laboratory.”

The PBCC established and oversees the Refunds for Breast Cancer Research program, which uses donations from Pennsylvanians to fund vital research grants across the state. State residents may contribute all or part of their state income tax refund to the Refunds for Research program to help find a cure. To date, Pennsylvanians have donated over $2.8 million with the average donation from taxpayers being $8. Thanks to the PBCC’s program, nearly 70 research grants have been awarded to outstanding Pennsylvania scientists.

The PBCC represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters and granddaughters won’t have to. For more information, visit www.PABreastCancer.org or call 800-377-8828.

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Media Contact: Kevin Smith, 717-903-8783

PBCC Turns Capitol Fountain PINK

Posted By on September 28th, 2011 at 3:17 pm | 2313 comments.

2011 Pink Fountain Kick-OffHARRISBURG, Pa. A bright pink fountain will flow throughout October at the Pennsylvania State Capitol to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness month. The East Wing Fountain at the State Capitol in Harrisburg turned PINK on Wednesday, September 28th thanks to the First Lady Susan Corbett and PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC).

 The PA Breast Cancer Coalition was proud to join First Lady Susan Corbett, Sheri Phillips, Secretary of the PA Department of General Services, and Debbie Freer, PBCC Board Member and breast cancer survivor, in celebrating the start of this important month. The pink fountain serves as a breathtaking visual that underlines and signifies the critical importance of education, early detection and treatment of breast cancer.

“Almost all of us know someone whose life has been touched in some way by this disease,” said First Lady Susan Corbett. “My mother fought and won two rounds with breast cancer.  She’s 92 now and still ready to fight. I’m proud to be her daughter.  With new treatments, research and a simple will to survive; we can all take on the challenge of reducing breast cancer deaths and someday put an end to this disease.”

“As a staple at the State Capitol, this fountain is a reminder to all who pass by about the magnitude of breast cancer education. It serves as a tribute to the brave women throughout Pennsylvania who have fought or are fighting this dreadful disease,” said Pat Halpin-Murphy, PBCC President and Founder. “As October approaches, we are reminded that there are more than 140,000 breast cancer survivors alive today across Pennsylvania, and we must continue to promote our mission of finding a cure for breast cancer now…so our daughters won’t have to.”

Breast cancer continues to be the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women in the United States, regardless of race or ethnicity. Nearly all breast cancers can be treated successfully if found early. When breast cancer is found in its earliest stage, the five-year survival rate is 98 percent.

The PA Breast Cancer Coalition represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to. For more information, please call 800-377-8828 or visit www.PABreastCancer.org.

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Media Contact: Kevin Smith
717-721-2580 x109
Kevin@PABreastCancer.org

Photo Exhibit Opening Tonight in Huntingdon, PA

Posted By on May 12th, 2011 at 8:14 am | 126 comments.

York County Photo Exhibit OpeningThe PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) is pleased to work with the Huntingdon County Exhibit Committee and J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital to bring its traveling photo exhibit 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania, to Huntingdon County from May 12th through May 22nd.  The photo exhibit will be displayed in the Main Lobby of the J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital located at 1225 Warm Springs Avenue in Huntingdon.

An opening reception is scheduled for Thursday, May 12th at 5 p.m. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public. The pink van and PBCC staff will be on hand to kick-off the 110th showing of the photo exhibit. This will be our first visit to Huntingdon County!

This work of art features women from each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties, along with a message about how breast cancer has touched their lives.  The women reflect the diversity of Pennsylvania, and their stories reflect the impact of breast cancer on themselves, their families and their communities.  The exhibit encourages women to learn about early detection and celebrates life, courage, hope and dignity of women and families who have battled breast cancer.  67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania is sponsored by the PBCC and funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

Pat Halpin-Murphy, President and Founder of the PBCC, encourages everyone to visit the exhibit.  “Breast cancer is not a rare event separate from the fabrics of our everyday lives.  It impacts our mothers, daughters and friends.  We must educate ourselves about this disease and fight to find a cure now…so our daughters won’t have to.”

“The Alliance for Breast Care (ABC) at J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital is honored to host the 67 Women, 67 Counties: Facing Breast Cancer in Pennsylvania exhibit,” said Dr. Maria Pettinger, Medical Director of Radiology at J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital. “This opportunity is limited to a few locations in the Commonwealth each year. We want to encourage not only the residents of Huntingdon County to take advantage of this inspirational exhibit, but also the people from the surrounding counties to experience the strength and courage of those who have faced breast cancer.”