Wednesday, February 11, 2009

St. Luke's promotes mammograms

Express Staff Writer

During the St. Luke's Winter Ball held in December, guests purchased 150 Pay-It-Forward Mammogram Cards from the St. Luke's Wood River Volunteer Core board of directors. These were made possible through the St. Luke's Wood River Foundation. The intention of the cards is to give a free mammogram to a woman in need.

"The gift of a mammogram is the gift of life," said Sun Valley resident Carol Harlig, a St. Luke's volunteer and breast cancer survivor. "Mammography is the best screening tool available to date for detecting breast cancer and it has saved tens of thousands of lives. We need to significantly increase the number of women in Idaho who receive mammograms."

In Idaho, fewer than half of women over age 40 received a mammogram last year. That gives the state the lowest mammography screening rate in the nation.

To reverse that negative statistic, the Volunteer Core, the hospital's volunteer organization, has committed $100,000 to help the foundation build and equip a $2.1 million Women's Imaging Center at St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center, beginning with a $35,000 donation that will be presented to the foundation's board on Feb. 10. Wood River Valley women interested in receiving financial assistance for a mammogram should contact St. Luke's Breast Care Services at (800) 720-1478.

Dana DuGan:

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