Sunday, July 11, 2010

You have the power to save someone's life today

What if ...

You found your cancer while it was still small?

You found your cancer before it spread to your nodes?

You found your triple negative cancer earlier?

You found your cancer so early you didn’t require chemo?

You found your cancer so tiny you could keep your breasts?

You found your cancer in time to preserve your fertility?

If only you knew earlier...

You know what all this means. You know what a difference it would have made in you life. 
We can’t change the past - but we can change the future for the young women who don’t even know they have cancer - yet.

Join the Before Forty Initiative

Our logo says it all: She is strong, beautiful and taking aim at cancer. She has shot her arrow and broken through the bonds of pink ribbons to take a stand and be a part of the solution. You can be that person for someone whose life you can save.

Take The Pledge:

I _________________, refuse to stand by and let another woman endure what I had to in order to fight my cancer. I pledge to teach five young women about the importance of early detection. I will encourage them to get baseline breast screening by the age of 35, or if she is at high risk, at the age of 30. I will take the time to explain the difference it will make in her life if she finds her cancer early. I will give her a Before Forty Initiative pamphlet that details everything she needs to know. I will fight for her to get follow up care if something suspicious is found. I will make sure she never, ever “watches and waits” for her cancer to grow. I will reassure her that mammograms may be uncomfortable for a moment, but they can save her life. I will tell her what a breast ultrasound is. I will walk her through a breast MRI, so she is unafraid. Because I am a survivor, I will be an active participant in protecting women until there is cure, because until that day comes, early detection is our only defense. I will be a part of the solution.

Name: __________________________________________
Address: ________________________________________


The Initiative’s Levels of Dedication:

The Archer
Saves the lives of 5-10 women

A Trailblazer

Saves the lives of 10-19 women

A Warrior 

Saves the lives of 20-49 women

The Conquerer 

Saves the lives of 50+ women

To save a life, please copy and paste this Pledge Form and mail it to 

No Surrender Breast Cancer Foundation, PO Box 84, Locust Valley, New York 11560 

All we are asking for is your pledge and a tax deductible donation of $10. This donation will help fund our national campaign, because we won't stop until every woman knows how vital this information is. 

We will send you the informational pamphlets you require for your recruits and any other information that will help you help those women who were US years ago, before we found our cancers. Let's do this- Let's make a real difference while we wait for the Cure.

Thank you.

Why is this so important- right this very minute? Read the latest news:

Mammogram uproar as pols, doctors reject guidelines
Originally published: July 11, 2010 6:32 PM
Updated: July 11, 2010 9:42 PM

Eight months ago, a federal advisory panel triggered an uproar by saying most women needed fewer mammograms and should begin them at a later age. Today, the confusion over those guidelines has intensified as physicians and lawmakers demand they be withdrawn.

The recommendations suggested women without risk factors for breast cancer could wait until 50 to start annual screening. Within a day of their release, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius issued a statement saying the guidelines didn't represent government policy, and advised women to "do what you've always done."
But the guidelines from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a panel of outside experts chosen by HHS, are still posted on an official government website run by Health and Human Services although they have been modified slightly to say women between 40 and 49 who want a mammogram should get one if their doctor recommends it.
Still, the furor over the guidelines will not go away.

Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) wrote to Sebelius in May saying passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in December required that the government withdraw the guidelines.

Vitter said the bill, passed by a bipartisan vote, called on HHS to remove the recommendations from its website and "cease all promotion of the November 2009 recommendations related to breast cancer screening and mammography"
In his letter, he wrote: "The fact that these recommendations are still being presented to the general public as 'current' is only serving to further confuse women on this critical issue. The recommendations were ill-conceived from the start. . . . They represent a step backward in our fight against a horrible disease."

Vitter spokesman Joel DiGrado said they have yet to receive a reply from Sebelius. "The senator's office has not heard anything back from HHS. This is not all that untypical for an agency. Their responses to formal letters can take quite some time."
Newsday made several attempts to get HHS to address the status of the guidelines - whether the agency still endorses them now that they've been edited, or whether they will be withdrawn, as some lawmakers are seeking. The agency did not provide answers to the questions and no one from HHS would address whether scrapping the guidelines is seriously under discussion.

Dr. Christine Hodyl, director of breast surgery at South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside, said she never took the guidelines seriously - they're unrealistic for Long Island.

"This week alone," she said recently, "I operated on two women. One was 37 and the other was 41. Here on Long Island, the breast cancer rate is so high I tell women to get their baseline [first mammogram] at 35 to 40. If these [two] women had waited until 50, the cancer would have metastasized."

Another critic, Dr. Brian O'Hea, director of the Carol M. Baldwin Breast Care Center at Stony Brook Medical Center, said he never stopped recommending routine screening at age 40. "We're still in line with the American Cancer Society and have not changed a bit," O'Hea said.

Last month, a Harvard mammography expert charged that the guidelines are based on faulty science and should be retracted.

None of the task force members were experts in breast cancer or mammography.
Health care insurers, such as Empire BlueCross Blue-Shield and Vytra, say they are sticking with the cancer society's recommendations.

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