Statement by NOW President Christian F. Nunes
September 29, 2023
As pink ribbons pop up everywhere to mark Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, the phrase “appointments and advocacy” comes to mind.
About 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime. It is the second most common cancer among women in the United States – just behind certain types of skin cancer. By remembering “appointments and advocacy,” we can stop breast cancer from happening in the first place across many demographics.
Until there is a cure, early detection leads to earlier treatment. The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends that women between 50 and 74 years old with an average risk for breast cancer get a mammogram – a breast X-ray – every two years. Those between 40 and 49 years old should check with their doctor about when and how often to get a screening based on their risk factors. Use this month to finally make that phone call for an appointment.
Meanwhile, remember that making such an appointment may be challenging for some women due to a lack of resources, proximity to a place to get a mammogram or other items usually out of her control.
Part of NOW’s equality advocacy focuses on access to mammograms and other preventative care, especially for low-income women and Black women – who face the greatest risk of dying from breast cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Let’s use our “appointments and advocacy” mantra in October to stand up – and sign up – for early detection.