Tag Archives: cervical cancer

From Other Blogs: Impacts of smoking on women, opioid crisis, cervical cancer screening & more

A collection of health and environmental posts from other governmental blogs.

Impacts of smoking on women

There is abundant research about the many harms of smoking – whether it’s the dangerous chemicals, the addictive properties or the damage smoking causes to the body. The effects of smoking can have a profound impact on your health and those around you.

Here are some facts about smoking and its impact on women’s health.

— From Flourish, Palmetto Health’s blog

Opioid Crisis Affects All Americans, Rural and Urban

Every day, more than 90 Americans die after overdosing on opioids. That’s three people every hour.

As if the death rate wasn’t bad enough, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that the “economic burden” of prescription opioid misuse in the United States is $78.5 billion a year, including the costs of healthcare, lost productivity, and addiction treatment.

 From the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) blog

Get the Facts: 3 Myths about Cervical Cancer Screening

I recently attended a school reunion and was able to catch up with some former classmates. I had not seen many of them for over 10 years. Of all the conversations I had that weekend, one about cervical cancer screening has stuck in my mind. As a friend and I discussed what we do, I mentioned that most of my work in the past few years has focused on cervical cancer prevention and research. She was curious to learn more about the need for screening.

My friend told me that she had not been screened for cervical cancer since the birth of her now 10-year-old daughter. What followed was a conversation where she gave me her reasons for not getting screened. I listened and tried to shed light on the myths she believed that make it okay for her to avoid screening.

— From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) The Topic Is Cancer blog

What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl’s #2017BestNine

As 2017 has come to a close, the What’s Cooking team at USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service is joining the #2017BestNine fun – a social media trend where users share their favorite or most popular moments of the year – by taking a look back at our top-viewed recipes. From quinoa to quesadillas, we are proud to share our users’ favorite recipes.

 From the USDA blog

Cervical Health Awareness Month

By Trenessa K. Jones, DSL
Best Chance Network Director
Division of Cancer Prevention & Control

Cervical Health Awareness Month is an opportunity to raise awareness about how women can protect themselves from cervical cancer, which was once one of the most common causes of cancer death for U.S. women.

While more work remains to prevent and respond to cervical cancer, fortunately the death rate has gone down with the increased use of screening tests.

You may qualify for free screening

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control’s (DHEC) Best Chance Network (BCN), along with its many partners, work to educate the public on the importance of cervical cancer screenings and help those who cannot afford to get screened.

BCN, which is administered by DHEC’s Cancer Prevention and Control Division, offers breast and cervical cancer screenings at no cost to women who have no health insurance or only have hospitalization insurance, who are between the ages of 30 and 64, and who meet certain program and income guidelines. The BCN program partners with more than 450 health care providers in the state to coordinate cancer screenings for these under-served women. The program also offers diagnosis and treatment, data tracking, public education and more.

The work of BCN

Since its inception in 1991, BCN has provided more than 225,000 breast cancer and cervical cancer screenings for eligible women, assisting nearly 11,000 this past year alone.

According to the National Cancer Institute/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention State Cancer Profile, an average of 190 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer a year, while about 72 women die from the disease every year in South Carolina.  Thanks to an increase in routine Pap smears, cervical cancer rates have dropped drastically in the last 60 years, but South Carolina still ranks 14th in the nation for new cases of cervical cancer and 11th in the nation for cervical cancer deaths.

Cervical cancer symptoms may not be present in early stages.  That’s why routine screenings are so important; when caught and treated early, cervical cancer is highly curable.

“No woman in South Carolina should die from this highly preventable cancer. Regular screenings and follow up care are critical and if found early and treated it can be cured,” said Virginie Daguise, Ph.D., director of DHEC’s Bureau of Community Health and Chronic Disease Prevention.

Visit the DHEC website for more information on BCN.

Best Chance Network: Much-Needed Access to Breast, Cervical Cancer Screening

Trenessa K. Jones, DSL
Best Chance Network Director
Division of Cancer Prevention & Control

Although Breast Cancer Awareness Month is winding down, the need to continue proactive efforts to raise awareness about the disease and urge people to get screened remains.

To that end, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control’s (DHEC) Best Chance Network (BCN), along with its many partners, will continue to do what they have been doing for 26 years: educate the public on the importance of breast and cervical cancer screenings and help those who cannot afford to get screened.

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), 3,820 South Carolina women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 690 will die from the disease this year.

BCN, which is administered by DHEC’s Cancer Prevention and Control Division, offers breast and cervical cancer screenings at no cost to women who have no health insurance or only have hospitalization insurance, who are between the ages of 30 and 64, and who meet certain income guidelines. The BCN program partners with more than 450 health care providers in the state to coordinate cancer screenings for these under-served women. The program also offers diagnosis and treatment, data tracking, public education and more.

Since its inception, BCN has provided more than 220,000 breast cancer and cervical cancer screenings for eligible women, assisting nearly 11,000 this past year alone.

The most recent South Carolina Central Cancer Registry data (2009-2013) indicates that more than 70 percent of women in South Carolina are diagnosed at an early stage, when the cancer is most treatable. In 2013, the South Carolina breast cancer incidence rate was 125.9 per 100,000 women ranking SC 28th out of 50 states and Washington, DC. The mortality rate was 22.4 per 100,000 women. SC ranked 21st out of 50 states and Washington, DC.

Early diagnosis is paramount: The earlier breast cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat. That is BCN’s goal: to help women in South Carolina gain an edge in their battle against cancer — and win.

Visit the DHEC website for more information on BCN.

Learn More About Cervical Cancer

By Stephanie Hinton, CPM, MHS, MA, Director, DHEC Division of Cancer Prevention & Control
Cervical cancer symptoms may not be present in early stages.  That’s why routine screenings are so important to detect cervical cancer early before symptoms occur.  When caught and treated early, cervical cancer is highly curable.

You May Qualify for Free Screening

Cervical cancer screenings are available for South Carolina women who meet program eligibility requirements.  DHEC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control administers The Best Chance Network (BCN). Contact the American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345 for additional information on program eligibility.  You may qualify if you:

  • Are a woman who lives in South Carolina
  • Are 40 to 64-years old
  • Do not have health insurance or are underinsured (meaning your insurance only covers hospital care)
  • Meet income eligibility guidelines

Cervical Cancer is on the Decline                                                                                        

According to the S.C. Central Cancer Registry, 980 women were diagnosed with cervical cancer from 2008 – 2012, while more than 350 women died from the disease during the same period.  Thanks to an increase in routine Pap smears, cervical cancer rates have dropped drastically in the last 60 years, but South Carolina still ranks 14th in the nation for cervical cancer incidence and mortality.

cervical-infographic long

Increasing access to cervical cancer screening

By Jamie Shuster

(The following post was originally sent as an email to DHEC Public Health staff on 1/17/14.)

sc best chance networkScreening for cervical cancer is a key public health intervention that saves lives, as early detection and treatment results in greatly improved outcomes for patients. Cervical cancer is almost 100% curable if detected in its earliest stages.

Our Best Chance Network (BCN) began screening women for cervical and breast cancer in 1991, and has provided more than 153,000 Pap smear tests to low-income and uninsured women who likely could not have accessed this service without BCN. Six percent of these screening tests were abnormal and required diagnostic follow-up. With the help of BCN, more than 1,000 women have been diagnosed and treated for pre-cancerous lesions or invasive cervical cancer, and nearly 80% were diagnosed in the early stages of the disease. Continue reading