Komen Missouri Community Partner: SSM Breast Care: Empowering and Engaging Women

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Susan G. Komen Missouri community-grant funding allows SSM Health Care’s SSM Breast Care: Empowering and Engaging Women program to provide care to patients who are low income and underinsured. Funding from Komen Missouri also helps the program aid male patients, who are often overlooked.

The Nurse Navigators and Project Coordinator for SSM Breast Care help patients through different types of care, including screening mammograms, diagnostic mammograms and breast health services and consultations.

“It takes a team to make SSM Breast Care successful,” says Tammy Hamma, project director. “Each of our roles plays an integral part in making this program possible.”

Tammy says she has a “direct responsibility to Susan G. Komen Missouri to ensure we are being good stewards of the funds we are given and that we are meeting the goals for the year. This program enables us to spread the inspiring Komen story and to emphasize the vital importance of annual screening mammograms in order to aid in early detection.”

The program educates women in the community to be their own greatest advocates for breast health.

Tammy recalls a young woman in St. Charles County with no insurance who was cared for recently by an SSM Breast Care Nurse Navigator. This young woman was caring for her mother, a Komen Missouri-funded patient battling breast cancer. In her mother’s final days, the young woman discovered a breast lump and promised her mother she would have it checked. The day after her mother’s funeral, the daughter called a Nurse Navigator at SSM Breast Care and received help and guidance through diagnostic procedures.

Fortunately for this young woman, the lump was benign, and she is now on a high-risk screening schedule to detect any other issues early.

“SSM Health Care has had the privilege of being partners with Susan G. Komen Missouri for 14 years,” says Tammy.

Susan G. Komen Missouri’s community grants help fund local breast cancer screening, breast health education and patient navigation and support services for those in our community who otherwise may not have access due to low income, lack of insurance or other barriers.

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Komen Missouri Community Partner: Mercy Health Foundation of St. Louis’ Breast Cancer Screening and Education Program

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The Breast Cancer Screening and Education Program at Mercy Health Foundation of St. Louis works with community agencies to help identify and schedule uninsured and underinsured, low-income women for breast screenings.

The program provides free mammograms and clinical breast exams, and educates about breast self-awareness at Mercy Breast Centers and in local communities through a mammography van. During screening events, a Nurse Navigator/Nurse Practitioner provides clinical breast exams, educates and provides care.

Angela Ruppel, the program’s project director and manager, explains that Susan G. Komen Missouri, “provides funding for mammograms and breast health services, clinical breast exams, breast self-awareness education and the availability of a mammography van and Nurse Navigators/Nurse Practitioners to assist and coordinate care for the uninsured and underinsured women in the community.”

Angela recalls a patient referred to the program who was “an uninsured 33-year old…single mom raising two children, working part time and going to school full time.”

The patient discovered a lump and was scheduled for a breast exam by Nurse Navigators/Nurse Practitioners, and then had a diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound.

“Due to this program and generous funds from Komen Missouri, the patient was able to have her diagnostic testing completed, which showed two solid masses,” says Angela.

The patient was scheduled for a consultation and had a breast biopsy. She was positive for invasive ductal carcinoma, underwent a double mastectomy and breast reconstruction. Angela says this woman “now has continued with her schooling and has hope for the future for both her and her family.”

This is the 13th year of Komen Missouri funding for this program.

Susan G. Komen Missouri’s community grants help fund local breast cancer screening, breast health education and patient navigation and support services for those in our community who otherwise may not have access due to low income, lack of insurance or other barriers.

Call for Nominations: Komen Missouri Pink Tie Guys 2016

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Susan G. Komen Missouri Pink Tie Guys are partners in the Komen promise to save lives and end breast cancer forever. These men are not afraid to wear pink, for they know pink is a symbol of hope, courage, strength and survivorship.  

Do you have what it takes to be a Komen Missouri Pink Tie Guy?

Do you know someone who is Pink Tie Guy worthy?

Learn more and complete the 2016 Pink Tie Guy application/nomination form.

Applications are due by Feb. 22.