Komen Foundation donates to breast cancer patients in Lake Count - ABC FOX Montana Local News, Weather, Sports KTMF | KWYB

Komen Foundation donates to breast cancer patients in Lake County

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With October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Health officials are raising the bar when it comes to their research on the disease.

Thanks to a $6,000 donation from the Susan G. Komen Foundation, Ronan's St. Luke Community Hospital is offset medical costs for breast cancer patients.

For the last several years, St. Luke Community Hospital has been able to provide breast cancer patients the care they need through donations made by the Susan G. Komen Foundation, which has been leading the fight against breast cancer for more than 30 years.

"We can do everything from the beginning of our diagnostic mammogram and breast ultrasound, to a biopsy that we are able to cover the funding for and the biopsy can run around 2,000 dollars," explained mammographer Melissa Hoppe.

Hoppe said that they originally used the Komen dollars to help pay for a screening mammogram, which looks for signs of cancer.

But Hoppe said that most insurances and wellness programs cover these annual screenings, so they decided to put these funds to better use.

The money now covers the cost of diagnostic mammograms, which is a procedure not frequently covered by insurance and is used if a patients initial results show abnormalities.

"A lot of women wouldn't come in and they wouldn't get the tests that they need," Hoppe said.

Tests these women needed, but could not afford.

But with the generosity of the Komen Foundation, the hospital is able to make this procedure possible.

Hoppe said that this is so important because anyone can get breast cancer.

"When my women tell me, 'Well, I don't really have to get this done every year because no one in the family has it,' I always tell them it has to start somewhere, so take care of yourself and make sure you are not that person where it starts," Hoppe said.

St. Luke is having “Ladies Night Bingo for Breast Health” to celebrate breast cancer survivors and educate the community about women's health.
"It's just a warm way for people to come into the hospital in kind of a non-threatening environment," explained Healthcare Foundation Director, Joseph Bischof.

Bischof said that women will have the opportunity to speak with doctors about any concerns and can even get a mammogram all in an effort to make sure women are staying on top of their health, so something like breast cancer can be avoided or cured.

In addition, the 2018 Missoula Komen Race for the Cure is happening this weekend in the Garden City.

You can register online or in person at 7:30 A.M. on Saturday at Caras Park in Missoula.

The 5K and 1 mile fun run start at 9 A.M. and money raised will go toward research and care to help reduce the number of breast cancer deaths in Montana.

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