"Women Matter" Event Serves Its purpose
October 14, 2011
Twenty-six uninsured women received a mammogram during the recent “Women Matter” event at Kishwaukee Community Hospital. A mammogram, Pap test and breast exam were provided free of charge thanks to a joint effort among the hospital, Community Cares Clinic, Tri-County Community Health and the Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (IBCCP).
Nearly 40 percent of the participants were advised to have a follow-up visit, demonstrating the importance of annual mammography screenings.
Tina Trank, caseworker for IBCCP, said this event was the first of its kind. “This would not have happened without the cooperation and commitment of time and resources from the local providers. Not only did it impact 26 women, it raised awareness about the state-funded program. Because of the publicity, we received calls from about 20 other women and are awaiting their paperwork so they can get their mammos done as well.”
Deb Bemis, director of Oncology Services for KishHealth System, said the women also received a free chair massage, manicure and information about community resources that day. “We are especially grateful to Unlimited Performance Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine, Amanda’s Spa and Beauty Services, and Unique Concepts for donating their time,” Bemis said. A second “Women Matter” event is being planned for the spring.
Trank added, “With this being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I hope more women pay attention to their need for a mammo and that they should not let finances or lack of insurance prevent them from getting screened.”
Women on Medicaid or who are uninsured should start the process of getting their annual mammogram or Pap test by calling IBCCP at (800) 511-4315. More information also is available at www.cancerscreening.illinois.gov.