Effective January 1, more than 400,000 low-income Pennsylvania residents will be eligible to receive new healthcare coverage through Medicaid. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have approved an expansion of Medicaid through an amended version of the Healthy PA program for Pennsylvanians who meet certain income criteria. Who does the new ruling cover?
Medicaid expansion covers individuals and families with incomes below 138% of the federal poverty level. For example, a single Pennsylvania resident earning less than $16,105 will qualify to receive free coverage. A family of two earning less than $21,707 would also benefit from the expanded coverage.
Enrollment for coverage under the Healthy PA expansion will open December 1 and effective January 1. The coverage can be retroactive to help with medical bills incurred in the past three months prior.
For more information on Pennsylvania’s expansion of Medicaid click here.
Scientists in Israel say they have developed the first blood test for the early detection of breast cancer. This test is called Octavia Pink and is currently available in Israel and Italy. What about here in the U.S.?
In the U.S., Octavia Pink is undergoing clinical trials in order to receive FDA approval. The test works by looking at antibodies in the blood. In addition to this test, EventusDx has developed a new technology that can process 96 blood samples at one time and takes no more than 3 hours. This technology allows a woman’s doctor to rule out or confirm a diagnosis very quickly. Researchers say the Octavia Pink test has proven to be more accurate at detecting breast cancer than mammograms. Results of the Israeli study show that the test correctly diagnosed 95% of healthy women and 75% of women with breast cancer.
To read the complete article, click here.
The Pink Daisy Project offers short-term assistance for women under the age of 45 who are within three months of breast cancer treatment or reconstruction. The organization provides gift cards for groceries, gas, and restaurants in order to offset the increased expenses in your budget during treatment. How can you apply?
As part of the application process, your oncologist must verify your age and date of diagnosis. To receive an application, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 7th annual Take A Swing Against Breast Cancer Home Run Derby wrapped up its summer season in Erie at Jerry Uht Park on Saturday, August 23rd. Batters of all ages stepped up to the plate this year to make a difference in the lives of women and families affected by breast cancer.
Top batters included: Brandon Crum and Tyler Fisher, both scoring 425 points; Jacob Spiker with a score of 400 points; David Gnacinski scored 375 points; and rounding out our top batters with a score of 350 points were Nick Cipalla, Brian King, and Geoff Devore.
The List Family Warriors showed up big for breast cancer survivors, earning our Top Fundraiser title raising over $750 for the PBCC!
Thank you to all our sponsors and all the batters who came out to take a swing against breast cancer with the PBCC. We look forward to seeing you next year!
Click here for photos from the 2014 Erie Derby.
By Pat Halpin-Murphy, President & Founder
On October 13, we will welcome hundreds of attendees to our PA Breast Cancer Coalition Conference in Harrisburg for a day of learning and networking. Many of our guests will be there, thanks to the Cary Massa Memorial Scholarship Fund.
Cary was a wife, a mother, a friend, a fighter and a shining light to those around her. She lost her battle with breast cancer in 2006, but Cary’s family, friends and fellow members of the ABC Support Group have chosen to preserve her memory through the Cary Massa Scholarship Fund. Since its establishment, the fund has allowed hundreds of women to attend the PA Breast Cancer Coalition Conference, free of charge.
Cary’s husband, Dr. Robert Massa and her dear friend Rosalyn Evans share Cary’s story and explain why they felt it so important to carry on her legacy in this way. We are grateful they have chosen to celebrate Cary’s life by giving to survivors across Pennsylvania.
Click on the video below to hear Cary’s story:
It was a spectacular day in Sunbury on July 12 as the streets were painted pink for this year’s Ta-Ta Trot. Survivor Julie Rockey and her amazing committee, including longtime PBCC friend Cheryl Delsite, took the annual 5K walk/run to the next level this year with more than 2,600 physical and virtual “trotters” from each and every one of the 50 states!
What started back in 2010 with 62 runners has exploded in year 5, raising a grand total of $27,121.68 for the PBCC to continue our work to find a cure! This event goes way beyond being a breast cancer fundraiser, as they spread awareness and the message of hope and healing 365 days a year. Thank you to all of the Ta-Ta Trot sponsors, runners, walkers, volunteers and especially the committee that puts it all together. We look forward to continue working with you until we finally can say “ta-ta” to breast cancer once and for all!
For more photos from the 2014 Ta-Ta Trot, click here.
Have you received a mammogram since February? If so, the PBCC’s Dense Breast Advisory Committee wants to hear from you! We are conducting a survey to ensure that women in PA are receiving the information they need when it comes to breast density.
The Breast Density Notification Survey will help the PBCC to follow up on Act 86, legislation that requires mammography centers to notify women of their breast density. Click here to take our short survey and you will be entered to win a free registration to our PBCC Conference on Monday, October 13 at the Harrisburg Hilton. Take Action. Take the Survey. Save Lives.
Betty Fish, Cumberland County
A fellow Girl Scout leader and I were talking at an event when she told me she had been diagnosed with breast cancer through a routine mammogram and she’d had a mastectomy. I had been so busy at work that I hadn’t had a mammogram for a full year. She grabbed me by the shoulders and said, “You have to promise me that tomorrow you will call and set up the appointment.”
I had the mammogram a month later. After my husband and I heard the news that I had DCIS, she was the first person I told, and I thanked her for saving my life.
The phone call confirming the diagnosis came the Monday before Thanksgiving, and I told my children before we drove home to Virginia to visit family. I told them that it’s very early and I’m going to be OK, but I decided not to tell my parents because I didn’t want to worry them. I have three older sisters, and none of them had had a recent mammogram. Just like my friend did for me, I pulled them all aside and said you have to promise me that you’ll make that appointment. They all did, and they were all fine.
I chose to have a mastectomy and had no problems. The weekend after the surgery we planned to go to a museum, and I said, “Let’s go to a dog shelter instead.” My daughter found a Blue Heeler puppy and we all fell in love with him. We adopted him on the spot and named him Ferris. He was the best therapy for everyone in the house. We were all busy concentrating on the puppy, training him, taking care of him, and he got everyone out walking him together. When he would come and lay on my chest at night it felt really good.
Now I bring it up with everyone I talk to … you HAVE to get a mammogram. What if I had put it off another year? My scout leader friend provided tons of support throughout the entire process, giving me suggestions for post-surgery and encouraging me. She’s a true lifesaver!
Betty is Director of Promotion and Public Service at abc27 and lives in Hampden Township, Cumberland County with her husband David, son Billy, daughter Nikki … and Ferris!