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Collaboration Provides Vital Breast Cancer Care to Charlotte Community

Levine Cancer Institute: Project PINK Addresses Cancer Care Disparity

June 20, 2012

Levine Cancer Institute: Project PINK has screened 124 women for breast cancer, and provided them with necessary follow-up care, since its launch in late 2011. Levine Cancer Institute: Project PINK, a unique collaboration between LiveWell Health Centers within local Charlotte YMCAs, Charlotte Radiology and Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Cancer Institute,provides low-income women and those with little or no health insurance the opportunity to receive breast cancer screenings at their local LiveWell Health Center via Charlotte Radiology’s mobile mammography unit.

“The cure rate is very high for those women whose cancers are caught early and have not spread," said Richard White, MD, Co-Director of the Levine Cancer Institute Breast Program. “However, low-income women and those with little or no health insurance are more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer at later stages, when average years of survival are less. This program has provided a potentially life-saving service to women in our community by delivering crucial prevention, detection and care of breast cancer.”

The initiative has held four breast screenings since December 2011, resulting in one early stage breast cancer diagnosis thus far. Levine Cancer Institute: Project PINK plans to continue to provide this service to women in the Charlotte area quarterly, in addition to prevention education and community outreach services.

“Early detection gives women more treatment options, including reduced surgery and better cosmetic outcomes, and often reduces the need for harsh chemotherapy,” said Matthew Gromet, MD, Charlotte Radiology’s Chief of Mammography.

The initiative has also benefited from the support of the local community. The Charlotte Knights baseball team held its seventh annual Pink Knights game May 12, raising more than $12,000 to support Project PINK’s continued outreach efforts.

The Institute also works to extend its mission of providing comprehensive breast cancer care through patient forums, patient navigation, counseling, support groups and educational programs.

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