By: Joleene DesRosiers Moody, Contributing Writer
OSWEGO, NY – October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Oswego County is offering free cancer screenings for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer at various locations throughout the county for women ages 40 -64.
The program is called the Oswego County Cancer Services Program and it is offered through Oswego County Opportunities.
Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that can grow into surrounding breast tissues or spread to distant areas of the body.
The disease occurs almost entirely in women, but men can get it, too.
Those that have survived it say the key to avoiding a negative diagnosis is early detection.
“Because there is no cure, early detection is the answer and has a 98% survival rate,” said breast cancer survivor Janet Rebeor. “So screenings are extremely important. Even if you don’t think you’re a candidate, get screened anyway. You just never know.”
To kickstart Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Oswego County, Rebeor will be the keynote speaker at a luncheon hosted by Oswego County Opportunities on Oct. 1 at Tavern on the Lock in Fulton.
The luncheon is for participating hair salons that are using their businesses to help spread awareness by offering gifts and information.
Jan’s story is meant to encourage other women to stay on top of screenings while reminding them of the importance of early detection and family support.
“When a doctor tells you that you have cancer, your mind goes from being completely blank to all kinds of thoughts,” she said. “Am I going to die? What am I going to do? How do I do this? I had such support from my family and friends. You can’t get through breast cancer or any kind of cancer without that can’t of support.”
Carolyn Handville is Cancer Services Program manager within Oswego County Opportunities. She encourages women to take advantage of the free service not just this month, but at anytime.
“Cancer can happen to you or to someone you know. Breast cancer really touches so many people’s lives. If you talk about it with friends and family, you’re more apt to get regular screenings. And if it’s caught early, it can be cured. There is a 98% survival rate when it’s caught early. So we’re encouraging our community to take advantage of this free opportunity,” Handville said.
Free screenings for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer at various locations throughout the county all year long.
Call (315) 592-0830 to make an appointment.
Other events are also taking place throughout the month of October.
Oct. 1 – 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Salon Luncheon at Tavern on theh Locke
Oct. 11 – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Senator Ritchie’s Senior Health Fair at Fulton War Memorial
Oct. 17 – Women’s Health Fair at Fulton Public Library (Time TBD)
Oct. 19 – National Mammography Day and screening events at all Imaging Departments (must call CSP – 315-592-0830 – to schedule appointment)
Oct. 27 – Human Pink Ribbon Ceremony 10-11 a.m. Hannibal IGA
Visit http://www.facebook.com/free.cancer.screenings for more information on related health fairs and activities happening throughout the county.