Archive for February, 2012

Contest: Share Your Survivor Story!

Posted By on February 17th, 2012 at 9:03 am | 183 comments.

Are you a breast cancer survivor living in Pennsylvania with a story to share? The PBCC is seeking your survivor stories to possibly be featured in an upcoming Pink Link or Front Line. Those selected to be featured can choose from a complementary registration for the PBCC Conference in Harrisburg on October 9, 2012 OR a complementary single batter registration for a 2012 Home Run Derby event (for you to use or for you to give as a gift).

Please limit your story to between 300 and 350 words, and send a photo of yourself along with your submission in the event your story is chosen for publication. If your story is selected, you will be contacted to confirm your details and your choice of a prize. Email Amy at with your story.

Survivor Spotlight – Dawn Jones

Posted By on February 17th, 2012 at 9:01 am | 1749 comments.

Dawn Jones wrote down affirmations to heal herself after experiencing a particularly hurtful encounter on Fifth Avenue in New York. Dawn was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer and, after her mastectomy, doctors advised her to wait at least 12 months before having reconstruction. Bald, with a size 44D breast on one side and flat on the other side, she held her head high. But on this particular day she came face-to-face with cruelty.

She was strolling down the street reflecting on the lovely luncheon she had just had with other breast cancer survivors when her thoughts were interrupted by the sound of derisive comments. She was shocked to realize they were being directed at her, about her appearance. She felt like melting into the street. Her ears were red, her heart was pounding, but she refused to cry. Her affirmations and her beautiful spirit are reflected in the following poem “I Am” which has drawn over 11,000 “likes” on her Facebook public figure page “DawnInRealTime.”

“I AM” by Dawn P. Jones

I AM Loving

I AM Caring

I AM Compassion

I AM Truthful

I AM Strong

I AM Successful

I AM Wealthy

I AM Joyous

I AM Young

I AM Immortal

I AM Great Health

I AM Courageous

I AM Fearless

I AM Relentless

I AM Grounded

I AM Kind

I AM Forgiving

I AM not the scars you may see,

I AM not the Lymphedema swelling you may see,

I AM not the discolored skin you may see,

I AM not the pain and the nausea,

I AM not my hair,

I AM not cancer,

I AM a daughter, a mother, a sister, an auntie, a lover and a friend,


And what I want you to see is,


DawnInRealTime includes a series of short videos chronicling her journey through treatment, and almost daily positive, uplifting messages like “I handle difficult situations with calm endurance” and “I am responsible for my own attitude.”

She was first diagnosed in 2000 and had a year of chemotherapy, a mastectomy, and reconstructive surgery 18 months later. Then 7 years later it returned, this time in her neck, lymphatic system, and chest and back. Doctors at the hospital in Queens where she was being treated said there was nothing else they could do for her. They did not expect her to survive this time. Then a neighbor suggested she research Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Philadelphia where she continues her treatment today.

Dawn takes care of her 86 year-old mother who lives with her now. She says her full-time job is to take care of herself and take care of her mom. She wants everyone to know “We are not the cancer; we are not the disease. We are women. We are women!”

Wanted: Workshops for the 2012 PA Breast Cancer Coalition Conference

Posted By on February 17th, 2012 at 9:01 am | 445 comments.

The PBCC is accepting proposals for workshops to be presented at the PA Breast Cancer Coalition Conference on Tuesday, October 9, 2012. There are six tracks we are using as guidelines for all submitted proposals: Leadership, Advocacy & Education; Advances in Treatment; Research and Clinical Trials; Breast Cancer Survivorship; The Mind/Body Connection; and Caring for the Caregiver. The deadline for submitted proposals is April 2, 2012.

Submitted proposals should contain: your contact information; a description of the workshop including the title, workshop goals and objectives; and biographical information and/or a CV for the suggested presenter along with their contact information if different from your own. Please submit your proposal and direct any process related or general conference related questions to Jennifer Pensinger. You will be notified if your workshop is selected.

Avastin May Have Role in Early Breast Cancer Treatment

Posted By on February 17th, 2012 at 9:00 am | 84 comments.

by Barbara C. Good, PhD

When government approval for the drug AvastinTM  (bevacizumab) was revoked for the treatment of advanced breast cancer last November, there were protests from women who had received it and were convinced the drug helped lessen their disease or even kept them alive.  Now two studies, one from the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP) in Pittsburgh and the other from the University of Frankfurt, Germany, have demonstrated that this drug may have a role to play in the treatment of early-stage breast cancer.

Avastin in these studies was used before surgery in women whose disease had not spread.  In both studies, the women who received it had lower rates of cancer once surgery was performed.  The side effects of this drug can be serious, and additional studies are continuing to see if these results hold up.  Tissue samples from these studies are also being examined to determine if women whose tumors contain particular genetic characteristics may respond more successfully to the drug.

For additional information about these studies, click here.

Abstracts of the studies as they appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine can be found here and here.



2012 Refunds for Research Awards & Campaign Kick-Off

Posted By on February 17th, 2012 at 8:58 am | 1390 comments.

The PBCC kicked off our annual Refunds for Breast and Cervical Cancer Research campaign at Philadelphia’s City Hall on February 13th. Councilman Dennis O’Brien joined PBCC President Pat Halpin-Murphy to recognize the 2012 Refunds for Research awardees from Philadelphia – University of Pennsylvania’s Andy Minn, M.D., Ph.D and Takemi Tanaka, Ph.D. of Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Minn and Dr. Tanaka were each honored with $50,000 grants for their respective research endeavors.

The PBCC’s Refunds for Research campaign encourages Pennsylvania taxpayers to donate all or part of their state income tax refund to support breast cancer research happening right here in the state. Every penny donated through the program goes to fund grants to researchers. Share the video below with your friends and family to raise awareness about this campaign and help us reach a goal of $3 million for research this year!

Free Online Course for FREE Treatment Coming Soon

Posted By on February 17th, 2012 at 8:57 am | 3625 comments.

Ensuring that women with breast cancer have access to treatment has been critically important to the PBCC. Through the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Program, free treatment is available to uninsured and underinsured women in Pennsylvania. In March, the PBCC will provide a free online course for all interested in learning more about the program, with 2 free credits available to nurses and social workers. Would you or a nurse, social worker, or advocate you know benefit from taking the course?

If you or someone you know may be interested in taking this free course, please let us know! We would love to put you on our list to receive more information once registration is open. While nurses and social workers are eligible to receive credit by taking the course, anyone who would like to learn more about the program and how it can benefit women in Pennsylvania is welcome to enroll.

Knowledge is power. Empower yourself with information that can help save the lives of uninsured and underinsured women battling breast cancer in Pennsylvania. Email Jennifer for more information today.

We Take Our Mission Seriously

Posted By on February 7th, 2012 at 2:54 pm | 342 comments.

It’s the PA Breast Cancer Coalition’s mission to give breast cancer survivors a voice within our Commonwealth. We believe we are that voice in the medical, legislative, insurance and corporate communities.

Since 1993, we have dedicated ourselves to finding a cure for breast cancer. Our many acclaimed statewide outreach efforts, along with our grassroots partners raise thousands of dollars for research each year. The money raised goes to people like Dr. Craig Meyers, a researcher at the Penn State College of Medicine. Dr. Meyers recently discovered a nondisease-causing virus that successfully kills breast cancer cells in the laboratory. With the help of our outreach efforts and grassroots partners we can give him the funding he needs to one day conduct human trials that will hopefully lead to a cure to breast cancer.

We believe that anyone can help make a difference in the lives of those fighting breast cancer and their families. It’s the creativity and talents of people like you that can truly make a difference. We know that the only way to end breast cancer is to find a cure and believe with your help we can do so.

My battle with breast cancer ignites my resolve to make certain that our generation is the last to ever fear breast cancer. As a mother and grandmother, I thank you for joining the PBCC’s efforts to find a cure now… so our daughters and granddaughters won’t have to.