MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - An expansion of breast cancer screenings to women on a statewide level will soon become a reality in Alabama.
The Alabama Department of Public Health and the Joy to Life Foundation announced the expansion efforts Wednesday morning.
The foundation will provide funds through the Alabama Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program and will help prevent an interruption of services and allow as many women as possible to receive life-saving cancer screenings.
The ABCCEDP provides free mammograms, Pap/HPV testing, and if needed, diagnostic testing to women who have no insurance, have an income at or below 250 percent of the poverty level and are age 40-64. If there is a diagnosis of cancer, most women are eligible to receive treatment through the Alabama Medicaid Agency.
Joy and Richard Blondhiem and State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris attended the announcement.
“We are very appreciative of our longstanding partnership with the Joy to Life Foundation and to its co-founders Joy and Richard Blondheim,” said Dr. Harris. “Early detection of breast cancer through regular screening saves lives. The foundation’s commitment to helping underserved women receive cancer screenings has saved more than 125 lives over the past 17 years. By expanding its coverage statewide, they will help us ensure as many women as possible receive life-saving cancer screenings.”
The Joy to Life Foundation is named for founder Joy Blondhiem, a breast cancer survivor and screening advocate.
“As the Joy to Life Foundation has done for 20 years, we will continue to work tirelessly every single day to provide the lifesaving screenings that every woman in Alabama needs and deserves,” she stated.
For help, call your local county health department or the ABCCEDP hotline at 1-877-252-3324 to schedule an appointment. It should be noted that COVID-19 should not prevent you from getting the medical care you need, the foundation urges.