Breast cancer awareness
Last year, there were approximately 208,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer diagnosed in the United States. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. To kick off the observance of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, the Seattle Chapter Hadassah threw a gala fundraiser, Breast Cancer Exposed! (BCE!), at Seattle’s Fairmont Olympic Hotel on Sept. 21.
BCE! was launched to raise money for the new Marlene Greenebaum Multidisciplinary Diagnostic Breast Center in Jerusalem’s Hadassah Medical Center. Why Israel? The Pacific Northwest has some of the highest rates of breast cancer in the country, and Israel has one of the highest rates in the world, leading to a collaboration between University of Washington and Israeli doctors and researchers. Israeli medical personnel train at the University of Washington, and research conducted at Hadassah Medical Center benefits us all.
The center is an innovator in breast cancer diagnosis, employing a procedure called RUTH, which results in earlier diagnoses and a 92 percent accuracy rate (compared with the 72 percent accuracy rate of mammograms). BCE! spread the word about patient care, innovations and research at Hadassah.
BCE! also aimed to educate local women about regular cancer and genetic screening. Honorary chair Mary Alhadeff shared her experiences as a mother of young kids who was diagnosed with a rare form of breast cancer while nursing. Keynote speaker Jessica Queller (a former Gossip Girl screenwriter) discovered as a young woman that she carried the BRCA “breast cancer” gene and wrote about the experience in her book, Pretty Is What Changes: Impossible Choices, the Breast Cancer Gene and How I Defied My Destiny.
Learn more about Seattle Hadassah and about Hadassah Medical Center. Find local breast cancer resources at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, a partnership between the University of Washington, Seattle Children’s and Fred Hutchinson.