|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 5, 2008
NYC Public Hospitals Expand Breast Cancer Services With $1.4 Million Avon Grant
More Patient Navigators, New Equipment, Weekend Clinic Hours Ensures Enhanced Care for the City's Underserved
New York, NY, November 5, 2008 - Breast cancer patients served by the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) will have more access to multi-lingual patient navigators, weekend appointments for mammograms, and modern equipment to make biopsies more effective, thanks to a $1.4 million award from the Avon Foundation that was announced today.
The Avon Grant, secured in part by the HHC Foundation, will support the expansion of breast cancer programs at four HHC facilities: Harlem Hospital Center and Metropolitan Hospital Center in Manhattan, Kings County Hospital Center in Brooklyn, and Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx.
"The on-going support and generosity of the participants for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer New York allowed us to make substantial new grants that will benefit women facing breast cancer. We were pleased to award grants to four HHC facilities to strengthen the Avon Safety Net Hospital program that ensures all women have access to quality breast cancer care regardless of insurance status or ability to pay," said Carol Kurzig, executive director of the Avon Foundation.
"Last year we offered more than 90,000 mammograms to New York women. And despite the citywide downward screening trends, we continue to screen more and more women for cancer each year. The Avon fund will allow us to maintain this positive trend and ensure that we continue to provide comprehensive, culturally sensitive and compassionate care complemented by these innovative support programs and the highest level of technology available," said HHC President Alan D. Aviles.
The Avon grant will be used to hire 8 additional bilingual Patient Navigators who provide support and guidance for women who face a cancer diagnosis. These health care workers help women with cancer through the maze of doctor visits, insurance issues and link patients to support organizations. The funds will also support a variety of specific breast health initiatives that are special for each hospital.
A New Stereo-tactic Biopsy Table for Harlem Hospital
Harlem Hospital Center received $450,000. A portion of the funds will be used to purchase a Stereo-tactic Biopsy Table, an exam table that is specially designed to support this minimally-invasive procedure and positions patients to allow full access to the entire breast through an opening on the table. The table is then raised and the biopsy procedure is performed beneath the table.
A Health Spa Day for Latinas and Outreach to Islamic Women at Metropolitan Hospital Center
Metropolitan Hospital received $400,000 to expand outreach, education and help reduce health care disparities among Hispanic and Islamic women in East Harlem. It would also expand the Spa de Salud program, a one day, personalized and comprehensive health care service open on Saturdays specially created for Latina women, which includes cancer screenings, HIV testing, relaxation exercises, nutrition counseling and more.
Tracking the Cancer Experience at Kings County Hospital
Kings County Hospital Center received $350,000 to offer more counseling support and access to vital social services in the community. Specifically, the grant will support a modern computerized information system that will ensure the tracking of each patient's journey from diagnosis and treatment to recovery and survival.
Breast Cancer Awareness in the ER at Jacobi Medical Center
With $200,000, Jacobi Medical Center will provide information and counseling about breast disease and breast cancer screening to women who come to the hospital's busy emergency room. The funds will also allow the Patient Navigators to support cancer patients being served at the hospital's health centers located in the North Bronx.
The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation offers lifesaving mammograms at little or no cost all year long at its 11 hospitals and community health centers. Between the years of 2003-2007, more than 400,000 mammograms were performed at HHC facilities and nearly 90,000 women received mammograms in the last year alone. To find an HHC hospital or health center, the public can call 311.
The HHC Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC), the nation's largest municipal healthcare system. The Foundation forms partnerships with the private sector to help increase the effectiveness of New York City's public health system with special programs, services and capital projects created to improve the public's health and well being.
The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC), is a $5.4 billion public benefit corporation that serves 1.3 million New Yorkers and nearly 400,000 who are uninsured. HHC provides medical, mental health and substance abuse services through its 11 acute care hospitals, four skilled nursing facilities, six large diagnostic and treatment centers and more than 80 community based health centers. For more information about HHC, visit nyc.gov/hhc.