Cambridge, MA...The ninth annual Avon Walk for Breast Cancer season continued with the Avon Walk in Boston on May 14-15, which raised more than $5.2 million to advance access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer. The Avon Walk Boston attracted more than 2,300 participants from 37 states and Washington, D.C., as well as Canada and Bermuda, including 214 breast cancer survivors, who joined together to raise life-saving funds and awareness for breast cancer.
Marc Hurlbert, executive director of the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, announced during the Closing Ceremony more than $3 million in grants to nine local organizations, ensuring the funds raised immediately benefit the community. "The Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Boston beneficiaries represent organizations that offer life-saving services to patients regardless of their ability to pay. These new grants will literally help them save lives."
Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA), a Harvard-affiliated public healthcare system, received one of four grants awarded to further strengthen the Avon Safety Net program, which consists of more than 100 hospitals across the country that ensure women and men who might otherwise fall through the cracks of the healthcare system have access to high quality breast cancer services.
With assistance from Avon since 2004, CHA has developed the state-of-the-art Cambridge Breast Center (CBC), the first center in Massachusetts accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers. With sites at both CHA's Cambridge and Whidden (Everett) hospital campuses, the CBC utilizes a coordinated team approach to treatment that brings together experts across disciplines to meet the individual health needs of women with cancer.
The latest grant, which provides continued support for two patient navigators as well as a breast health coordinator who focuses on outreach, will help CHA enhance its efforts to ensure more women receive high quality mammography and breast health care, particularly in the communities of Everett, Malden, Revere, Chelsea, and Winthrop. It coincides with expanded services at CHA's Whidden campus, including the addition of surgical oncologist Tamra McKenzie-Johnson, MD, one of CHA's participants in this year's Avon Walk Boston.
For more information about CHA's breast health services, call 617-665-2001 or visit http://www.challiance.org/breast_center/breast_center.shtml.
Since its launch in 2003, the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer series has raised more than $385 million through the dedication of more than 145,000 participating women and men from across the country, including thousands of Avon Associates and Representatives. The Avon Foundation for Women manages the funds raised, which it awards to local, regional and national breast cancer organizations to support five areas of the breast cancer cause, including awareness and education, screening and diagnosis, access to treatment, support services, and scientific research. For more information, visit www.avonwalk.org.
Caption: Cambridge Health Alliance surgical oncologist Tamra McKenzie-Johnson, MD (center), accepts a grant from Marc Hurlbert, Executive Director of the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade and Eloise Caggiano, Program Director of Avon Walk for Breast Cancer.