RUSSELL, Ky. — Kentucky Department for Public Health (KDPH) is combating the cancer fight by awarding The Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital (OLBH) Foundation a $27,500 grant. The number of mammograms rates will increase in Boyd, Carter, Elliott, Greenup and Lewis counties.
The funding from KDPH will be allocated toward providing transportation to women in the above-mentioned counties that otherwise would miss out on receiving potentially life-saving mammograms, according to OLBH. Henceforth, as a result of the grant, no fewer than 600 women who face transportation challenges will receive a mammogram at the OLBH Women’s Center, located in Bellefonte Centre on the OLBH campus.
Chuck Charles, OLBH Foundation vice president, said diagnosis of cancer should not be contingent upon transportation. “A breast cancer diagnosis should not be made more challenging by being found late, especially if the late diagnosis is the result of transportation access to a mammogram,” Charles said. “Because of this support of the Kentucky Department for Public Health, hundreds of women in our area will now receive the mammograms they require in a timely fashion.”
The grant will provide for a combination of fuel card purchases and support of the OLBH Van Ministry, which provides non-emergency van service to medical appointments for those who cannot afford transportation or who do not have access to it. The OLBH Van Ministry expends approximately $175 each day in gasoline and upkeep to ensure that area residents have the transportation they need.
OLBH Women’s Center has combined breast health services in one location, eliminating the necessity for multiple appointments and prolonged waiting for women since it’s opening eight years ago.
Kevin Compton OLBH Communications & Advocacy Specialist, said they are grateful for the grant, and to make a positive impact upon local mammogram rates.
“We’re thankful for this grant, and for the opportunity to positively influence the mammography rates of our area,” Compton said.
The Women’s Center offers digital mammography, pap tests, breast ultrasound, surgical consultations, minimally invasive breast biopsy, DEXA-scan to screen for osteoporosis, genetic testing, clinical breast exams, a women’s library, and a retail boutique. The center also provides full-time nurse practitioner to serve as the center’s nurse navigator to guide patients through the process.
For more information on the OLBH Foundation, contact the foundation at 606-833-3777 or visit olbhfoundation.org. To schedule an appointment at the OLBH Women’s Center, call the center at 606 -836-PINK (7465).
Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.