Rising Unemployment and Stressed Health Care System Put Breast Cancer Patients at Risk
Susan G. Komen®, the world’s leading breast cancer organization, announced today the creation of a new Komen COVID-19 Action Fund to help the organization support the unique needs of people facing breast cancer during this health and economic crisis. Rising unemployment, mandatory stay at home orders, and an overburdened health care system is causing a perfect storm for breast cancer patients who have questions or need care. Funds raised will ensure that Komen is able to help those in need of support during this crisis.
“We know that people who have been impacted by breast cancer, or who are concerned that they may have breast cancer, need help getting the care they need now more than ever,” said Paula Schneider, CEO of Susan G. Komen. “Whether it’s providing information, finding alternative resources or helping people stay in treatment by providing financial assistance to help remove barriers to care, we are here to help. But we can only be here for patients if we have funds available to deploy in assisting them.”
Komen remains committed to doing whatever it takes to save lives by supporting those most vulnerable within the breast cancer community. The Komen COVID-19 Action Fund supports urgent needs among our breast cancer community today. Donors to the fund ensure important services continue for those in need, including:
- Komen’s Breast Care and Clinical Trials Helpline, which is receiving record-high call volume
- Komen’s Treatment Assistance program, which provides financial assistance to patients going through treatment
- Guiding patients through difficult decisions and providing psychosocial support from oncology social workers.
- Komen’s advocacy for breast cancer patients and their needs among policy makers
- Funding lifesaving research and clinical trials to discover new treatments
People and companies interested in supporting the unique needs of breast cancer patients during this health crisis are encouraged to visit coronavirus.komen.org to learn more and to donate to the Fund.
For people looking for support, Komen’s Breast Care Helpline can provide information, social support and help with coping strategies related to anxiety or concerns during these uncertain times. Calls to the helpline are answered by a trained and caring staff member in English or Spanish, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. ET. You can reach the helpline by phone at 1-877-GO-KOMEN (465-6636), or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Komen also noted that COVID-19 is disrupting routine screenings for many women and supports delaying screening during this heath crisis. However, Komen strongly encourages people to know what is normal for them, and to report to their health care provider any changes. The warning signs for breast cancer are not the same for all women. The most common signs are changes to the look or feel of the breast, but a full list of warning signs for breast cancer can be found on komen.org. Contact a doctor if you notice any change in your breast.