Mammograms and Related Tests Will Be Available For Uninsured and Underinsured Women
(Greenwood, SC, May 8, 2015) –Women in the Lakelands who are uninsured or can’t afford a needed mammogram just received a priceless gift—Self Regional Healthcare has been selected as a 2015 Susan G. Komen Mountains to Midlands grant recipient.
The Self Regional Healthcare Cancer Center will receive $52,453 to be used over the next 12 months for medical imaging such as mammograms and diagnostic tests and breast health education and screening outreach.
“As a physician, you want to be confident that all women, regardless of insurance or financial status, have access to the tools they need to screen for breast cancer,” said Dr. Mark Van Swol, Montgomery Center for Family Medicine faculty and family medicine physician. “I encourage my female patients to do self breast exams, yearly physicals, and (at the appropriate age) have regularly scheduled mammograms to screen for breast cancer.”
Women in the Lakelands region may face more challenges to preventive cancer care than women living in other parts of South Carolina. The region has a higher average incidence of late-stage breast cancer diagnosis than the state average (26.575 women in the Lakelands versus 25.5 per 100,000 women in other parts of the state). At the Self Regional Cancer Center, breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer diagnosis, comprising 20 percent of all patients the center treats.
In addition to providing imaging or mammography services and intervention such as biopsies, the Cancer Center plans to use funding for community outreach and education.
“I realize that people do put off having mammograms, and one of the main reasons is financial,” said Dr. Van Swol. “Having grant funding from the Komen Foundation can help eliminate one of the financial barriers to care.”
Women who need a mammogram will coordinate with Breast Health Navigator Katie Davis to fill out an application. Certain financial and insurance criteria will determine if the person is eligible for grant funding through Komen or another source.
“Our Cancer Center and our Imaging Center always make extraordinary efforts to help women who need a mammogram but can’t afford one,” said Julie McDade, Cancer Center Manager. “Being named a Komen grant recipient provides even more financial support for our region and allows us to screen and potentially detect cancer earlier for hundreds of women.”
In addition to Komen grant funds, Self Regional relies on the Best Chance Network, a program funded by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the SC Legislature. In addition to grant funding, Self Regional provides a generous charity care program. In 2014, the health system donated $21 million in charity care, which included mammograms for individuals who could not afford one.
In recent years, the Cancer Center also launched a fundraising event called Pretty In Pink, with donations going back to the Self Regional Healthcare Foundation with a designation for breast health.
“When a woman discovers a lump in her breast and doesn’t have a way to pay for a mammogram, we go to extraordinary lengths to take care of her and hopefully relieve her anxiety as soon as possible,” said McDade. “Having this additional funding from the Komen Foundation allows us to reach more women, and that’s absolutely critical for our region.”
Women who need a mammogram and live in Greenwood, Laurens, Edgefield, Abbeville, McCormick, Newberry and Saluda counties and are uninsured or underinsured can contact Self Regional Breast Health Navigator Katie Davis at (864) 725-5977 or firstname.lastname@example.org to see if they qualify for assistance. Organizations that are interested in partnering with Self Regional on community outreach and education may also contact Davis.
About Self Regional Healthcare:
Self Regional Healthcare is a not-for-profit, regional referral hospital that provides care to residents of Greenwood, Abbeville, Laurens, Saluda, McCormick, Edgefield and Newberry counties. Services include prevention and wellness, acute care and tertiary care services including cancer care, neurosurgery, heart and vascular surgery, NICU, orthopedics and genetics. Self Medical Group is its employed physician affiliate network of 20 practices and more than 60 physicians.