Nevada Cancer Coalition launches “Paint Nevada Pink” prevention campaign
RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Nevada Cancer Coalition is a statewide agency that advocates for cancer prevention, early detection and survivorship. The coalition is raising awareness for breast cancer screening throughout Breast Cancer Awareness month. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer in northern Nevada, just behind skin cancer.
The American Cancer Society estimates 2,620 Nevadans will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2023 and 440 will die of the disease. Men are also at risk, but women are much more likely to get it. Overall, 91% of people diagnosed with breast cancer have a five-year relative survival rate when compared to people who do not have cancer. When found early—the cancer has not spread outside the breast—the survival rate goes up to 99%.
Nevada Cancer Coalition is urging people to take action early. “We’re making sure that every woman in Nevada knows that she needs to be talking to her doctor about her individual risk, as early as age 25,” said Lily Helzer, the prevention program manager. “The number one risk factor for breast cancer is having to make sure you’re talking to your doctor, and then getting those starting at age 40 annually.”
Black women are more at risk of dying from breast cancer than any other race. There are many factors leading to this, including being genetically at higher risk for more aggressive breast cancer types and facing racial and economic barriers to accessing quality care and resources. Black women are also more likely to be diagnosed at a younger age, leading to recommendations that at age 25 they begin discussing with a healthcare provider their personal risk for breast cancer and when to begin screening.
There was a significant decrease in screening over the pandemic. In 2022, 62.7% of women in Nevada aged 40+ said they had been screened for breast cancer with mammogram within the past two years. That’s a 7% drop from 2020, reflecting the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on screening.
This year’s Paint Nevada Pink will touch more lives. “We are also doing a match program this year for every woman that schedules an appointment to get her mammogram in the month of October. We have partners that are making a match back that will then help other women remove financial barriers for getting them screened,” said Helzer.
Mammogram Match screenings for people will be held at Northern Nevada Health System Mammography, Northern Nevada Medical Center Reno–Sparks. They can be reached at (775)356-5800 or by visiting nnmc.com.
You can also call Reno Diagnostic Centers at (775) 323-5083 or visit Women’s Imaging Services - Reno Diagnostic Imaging (renodiagnosticcenters.com).
And if people are uninsured or underinsured and looking to get a mammogram, they can call Women’s Health Connection at 844-469-4934.
For more information visit Nevada Cancer Coalition.
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