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Oklahoma City Indian Clinic > In The News > Oklahoma City Indian Clinic aims to reduce barriers to care and cultural stigma related to Breast cancer

Oklahoma City Indian Clinic aims to reduce barriers to care and cultural stigma related to Breast cancer

Oklahoma City Indian Clinic aims to reduce barriers to care and cultural stigma related to Breast cancer

American Indian women have the highest death rate from breast cancer of any other race

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma City Indian Clinic (OKCIC), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit clinic providing health and wellness services to American Indians in central Oklahoma, is a proud supporter of breast care health and participates in outreach efforts to spread the word about the importance of breast care.

October was Breast Cancer Awareness month. According to the CDC, other than skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States. American Indian women have the highest death rate from breast cancer of any other race, primarily because of late diagnosis. OKCIC aims to reduce these high rates with additional screenings and community outreach.

OKCIC’s Public Health department’s Pink Glory Breast Care Initiative held many educational and interactive opportunities for patients in October in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, including Mother-Daughter Night on October 18, 2017, and Indigenous Pink Day on October 20, 2017. These events were sponsored by the Avon Breast Health Outreach Program.

Over 110 participants and volunteers attended the Mother-Daughter Night, including 11 breast cancer survivors. During Mother-Daughter Night, guests were treated to a moving speech by Sarah McLean, who was diagnosed with breast cancer twice before the age of 40. Because of her experience, she and her husband have dedicated their lives to the emotional and spiritual restoration of survivors and their families. Participants enjoyed an evening of sisterhood and made lovely fall wreaths to take home as a souvenir.

Indigenous Pink Day was celebrated at OKCIC on October 20. Two mobile mammogram machines from Oklahoma University Breast Health Network were available and over 65 patients were screened for breast cancer that day. Mammograms help detect breast cancer early, when it is easier to treat. The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends that women who are 50 to 74 years old and are at average risk for breast cancer get a mammogram every two years.

“We couldn’t have been more pleased about the turnout from our patients to all events of the breast cancer awareness events in  October,” Ashton Gatewood said, OKCIC’s Public Health Director. “Outreach and education about breast health is one of the strongest tools Oklahoma City Indian Clinic can provide to our Native women.”

OKCIC is currently raising funds to expand women’s health services, including adding in-house digital mammography equipment, through our CARES Capital Campaign.  Purchasing this equipment provides our patients privacy and convenience by giving them daily access to life-saving screenings, extended hours and more appointment availability.

OKCIC would like to thank the following community partners for making both events a huge success: Avon Breast Health Outreach Program, Howard Brothers Florist, Project 31 and Trifecta.

About Oklahoma City Indian Clinic

Oklahoma City Indian Clinic was established in 1974 to provide excellent health care and wellness services to American Indians in central Oklahoma. The clinic staff cares for more than 18,000 patients from over 200 federally recognized tribes every year. American Indians can receive a range of services, including medical, dental, pediatrics, prenatal, pharmacy, optometry, physical fitness, nutrition, family programs and behavioral health services. For more information, please call (405) 948-4900 or visit www.okcic.com.

About Avon Products, Inc.

Avon is the Company that for 130 years has proudly stood for beauty, innovation, optimism and, above all, for women. Avon products include well-recognized and beloved brands such as ANEW, Avon Color, Avon Care, Skin-So- Soft, and Advance Techniques sold through nearly 6 million active independent Avon Sales Representatives. Avon Breast Health Outreach Program works alongside and receives support from the Avon Foundation and Avon Products, Inc. to fund access to care and research on prevention and metastatic breast cancer. Learn more about Avon and its products at www.avoncompany.com.