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May 2, 2014 

HHC Raises Breast Cancer Awareness with Annual Campaign

Reminder that Mammograms Can be a Lifesaver

New York, NY –  The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) today launched its annual breast cancer awareness campaign to remind women that mammograms can be a lifesaver and to urge women 40 and over to schedule a mammogram every one to two years. HHC chooses May in honor of Mother’s Day to remind all women that prevention, screening, and early detection are the best defense against breast cancer. Breast cancer education and screening events (same day mammograms are not available at every location) will be held in every borough throughout the month at HHC's 11 acute care hospitals and six diagnostic and treatment centers for members of the community. Manhattan residents can visit HHC’s website for a list of mammogram education and mammogram screening events.

“A lifesaver is designed to help us in a crisis – to potentially save lives. For women, that lifesaver can often be a mammogram,” said HHC President Dr. Ram Raju. “This was the case for Virginia Lopez, a patient and staff member at HHC Gouverneur Health, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011. Virginia was lucky to have her health crisis averted early due to her mammogram, and we are lucky to have her back with us.”

HHC hospitals and health centers performed more than 102,000 mammograms last year. Patients wanting to schedule a mammogram are encouraged to call 311 to identify the HHC facility most convenient to them, where confidential mammograms can be performed regardless of the patient’s ability to pay, or health insurance or immigration status.

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This year’s HHC’s breast cancer awareness campaign uses an image of a pink lifesaver to remind people that a mammogram helps women maintain good health. Women will be encouraged to take their photo with a large cutout of a pink lifesaver and post it to social media using the hashtag #HHCmammograms. HHC facilities will feature an "I Pledge" recognition wall for staff and patients to post pink ribbons with their pledge to schedule a mammogram.

Virginia, 56, a lead technician who performs mammograms on other women every day, became complacent about her own health after a few years of regular mammograms. “I was too comfortable with the idea that if nothing happened to me for a few years, nothing will ever happen,” she said. When she got her mammogram at Gouverneur Health after waiting three years, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Virginia was later treated with surgery and still takes preventive medication. “A mammogram helped diagnose the disease, luckily in its early stages, making it easier to treat.” "Women need to realize that when detected and treated in its earliest stage, the survival rate for breast cancer is 97 percent,” said Margaret Kemeny, MD, Director, Queens Cancer Center, HHC Queens Hospital Center. “Preventative screenings such as mammograms for women over 40 (every one to two years) are important proactive steps women should take in the fight against this disease.”

HHC hospitals and health centers in Manhattan will host the following breast cancer screening and informational events throughout the month of May (mammograms are also available at HHC facilities year round):


Bellevue Hospital Center
462 First Avenue (27th Street)
May 15 (Thursday)
10am – 2pm
(212) 562-4516

Gouverneur Health
227 Madison Street
May 1 - 31
8am - 6pm
(212) 238-7897

Harlem Hospital Center*
Mural Pavilion – Women’s Imaging, 2nd Floor
506 Lenox Avenue
May 5 – 30 (Monday – Friday)
8am – 12pm
May 10, 17, 24 & 31 (Saturdays)
8am – 2pm
May 11 & 18 (Sundays)
12pm – 5pm
(212) 939-4290

Metropolitan Hospital Center*
1901 First Avenue
May 9 (Friday)
10am – 3pm
(212) 423-7993

Eddie Jr’s Hair Salon **
1604 Madison Avenue (E 107 Street)
May 17 (Saturday)
10am – 3pm

* Call for an appointment
** Appointments scheduled for Metropolitan Hospital


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