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Ed Day, Rockland County Executive

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 5, 2020
Contact: John Lyon, Director of Strategic Communications (845) 638-5645
                 Patricia Schnabel Ruppert, D.O., M.P.H., CPE, DABFM, FAAFP (845) 364-2512

Time to Get Screened for Breast Cancer!

NEW CITY, NY, - Rockland County Executive Ed Day and County Health Commissioner Dr. Patricia Schnabel Ruppert announce that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and remind county residents to get screened for breast cancer.

Screening refers to tests and exams used to find a disease, like cancer, before you have any symptoms. These tests can help find cancer at an early stage. By the time symptoms appear, cancer may have begun to spread. "Getting screened regularly for breast cancer is key because the earlier it is found, the better the chances are that treatment will be successful," said Dr. Ruppert.

The best defense is to find breast cancer as early as possible when it is most treatable. The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends the following guidelines for finding breast cancer early in average-risk women without symptoms:

  • Women between 40 and 44 have the option to start screening with a mammogram (x-ray of the breast) every year.
  • Women 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year.
  • Women 55 and older can switch to a mammogram every other year, or they can choose to continue yearly mammograms. Screening should continue as long as a woman is in good health and is expected to live at least ten more years.
  • All women should understand what to expect when getting a mammogram for breast cancer screening, including what the test can and cannot do. Clinical breast exams are not recommended for breast cancer screening among average-risk women at any age. Women should be familiar with how their breasts normally look and feel and should report any changes to a health care provider right away.

Women at increased risk (due to factors such as family history, personal history of breast cancer, etc.) should talk with their doctors about whether or not they should start having mammograms when they are younger, have additional tests done (such as breast ultrasound or MRI), or if they should have more frequent exams. For additional information on the ACS recommendations for the early detection of breast cancer screening guidelines, visit https://bit.ly/32eLtrI.

The Cancer Services Program of the Hudson Valley Region offers FREE breast cancer screening tests and follow-up services to those who are uninsured (or under-insured) and meet eligibility requirements. For more information and resources call 1-855-277-4482 or visit https://www.hitch.org/cancer-services-program. For more information about breast cancer call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit www.cancer.org.

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