Every week the White House features a 'Champion of Change' and with October Breast Cancer Awareness Month fast approaching The White House has chosen Anne Marie Murphy, Ph.D. who was named the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force in April 2010 and has more than twenty years experience in healthcare reform.
Dr. Murphy has been invited to an event in honor of people who are "winning the future" and inspiring others to take a cue from their example. The roundtable discussion will be available online live at 4.15pm EST at www.whitehouse.gov/live
The Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force was formed back in 2007, after worrying data showed how women of African American descent in the Chicago area had showed no improvement in survival rates, despite treatments and technologies having taken leaps and bounds. Chicago data showed black women were 62% less likely to survive breast cancer compared to white women and while survival rates can vary from community to community, a comparison in New York had only a 27% lower rate.
One of the keys with treating Breast Cancer is catching it very early on. October Breast Cancer awareness month aims to promote women's awareness of the disease and encourage mammogram screening which has become much more accurate at detecting early states of the disease. The figures from Chicago serve to illustrate their key point, that the fight against Breast Cancer should be taken to the public at large
Events are held around the country in October, including walks and other fund raising activities, that not only promote Breast Cancer awareness but also seek to raise money to provide all women access to healthcare and breast screening.
The issue is certainly one worth paying attention to with The American Cancer Society figures showing nearly a quarter of a million new cases of invasive breast cancer in the United States in 2011 and with approximately 20% dying from the disease, its not to be taken likely. Breast Cancer is the most common form of cancer in women and surprisingly it can also occur in men, though the number of cases is well under one percent and less than 500 males will die from the disease in 2011.
Aside from having regular screenings and being generally aware of breast health, other factors that women should be aware of include :
- Post menopausal weight gain
- Family history of the disease
- Getting Yearly Mammograms after the age of 40
Two aspects that women should be aware of is the possibility to make regular self examinations once a month, and on a positive note being clear that breast cancer survival rates are improving both from more cases being caught early on and treatments and technologies becoming more advanced. Breast Cancer survivors generally have a good quality of life post treatment and many go on to live happy and healthy lives, having over come the disease.
Having this kind of information made clear is one of the primary goals of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Rupert Shepherd for Medical News Today.com