During the month of May, HHC observed Mother's Day by launching a month-long public awareness campaign to encourage women over 40 years old to seek a mammogram at any HHC hospital, community health centers and mobile mammography van locations on Staten Island.
The powerful citywide campaign was made even more immediate for New York women, because it featured actual HHC doctors and staff, who brought home the theme in English and Spanish: 1 in every 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. New Yorkers can see and hear their message by visiting the HHC web site at nyc.gov/hhc.
City public hospitals and health centers performed more than 400,000 mammograms since 2003 and nearly 90,000 mammograms during 2007. As a result, significantly more cancers have been diagnosed at an earlier stage when treatment is more effective and prognosis much more hopeful. A woman can have breast cancer even if she has no symptoms, and since mammograms are among the best early detection methods, it is recommended that women over 40 get a mammogram and a breast examination by a doctor every year. If breast cancer is detected early, the five-year survival rate exceeds 96%.
The City Health Department reports breast cancer kills about 1,260 in New York City every year and yet 23% of women 40 and older have not had a recent mammogram.