The annual Paint the Town Pink breast cancer awareness initiative was celebrated by officials behind the effort as the 2016 campaign was brought to an end Monday morning with a ceremony at the Nancy N. and J.C. Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion at St. Joseph’s/Candler.
The Savannah-based movement put on throughout October by St. Joseph’s/Candler Hospital and the Savannah Morning News in conjunction with Breast Cancer Awareness Month was touted for once more conducting outreach efforts to assist uninsured or uninsured women get mammograms and other health services related to breast cancer. The fund is filled with proceeds from Paint the Town Pink events and the SmartWomen Luncheon, which raised more than $100,000 for the fund, according to St. Joseph’s/Candler officials.
On Monday, Savannah Morning News Publisher Michael Traynor contributed another $6,500 that had been raised from a portion of new subscription proceeds and newspaper sales during the month.
“We know this will go a long way to folks needing assistance,” Traynor said.
St. Joseph’s/Candler President and CEO Paul Hinchey said the campaign, in its ninth year, had another successful month despite an interruption in activities by Hurricane Matthew. Such storms have a parallels with breast cancer such as the necessity of preparedness and prevention, Hinchey said.
“Whether it is getting a screening or evacuating the area, the two of them are similar,” Hinchey said.
There were 257 people examined during the campaign’s screening day, one of whom, Hinchey said, had included a woman who had never had a mammogram before. She ended up being diagnosed with stage 2 cancer, in whichwhen it has not yet spread beyond the breast, and Hinchey said she should have a positive outcome due to the cancer being caught early.
“That’s why we are all here,” he said.
The effort to increase the number of women getting mammograms does not stop with the end of the campaign. The Chatham County Health Department is partnering with the St. Joseph’s/Candler to offer free mammograms from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Monday at the Chatham County Health Department located at 1395 Eisenhower Drive. Women who meet certain annual income guidelines and are 40-64 years of age without insurance will be eligible to receive a screening mammogram at no cost. Appointments are encouraged but walk-ins will be accepted. To make an appointment, call 356-2946.