Hadassah members are showing their pink pride for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, strutting down pink runways, donating essential items to women in need and baring their breasts for art. Their goal? To educate more people about breast cancer risk and prevention, and to raise funds to support groundbreaking research at Hadassah’s hospitals.
Educating women about the importance of screening remains an integral part of many of Hadassah's local health and wellness programs during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In an episode of the Hadassah On Call podcast, Dr. Shani Paluch-Shimon talks about women skipping their regular mammograms because of COVID-19. "It’s a major concern," she says. "It's very possible that we'll see some delays in diagnosis. In some cases, even a small delay can be a disaster."
Hadassah members across the country are stepping up, including replicating events like Drink Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness, hosted by Evolve Hadassah: The Next Generation. Here are a few highlights of their efforts.
- Stylin’ Against Breast Cancer (B’Yachad Chapter, California)
Each year, the B’Yachad Hadassah Southern California Chapter organizes a major breast cancer event. Featuring a fashion show and a B’Yachad member's personal account of her recent breast cancer diagnosis, this year’s Stylin’ Against Breast Cancer, raised nearly $20,000 for Hadassah’s hospitals.
- I Support the Girls Donation Drive (San Antonio Chapter, Texas)
This Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the San Antonio Chapter of Hadassah is participating in a donation drive for “I Support the Girls,” contributing essential items, including bras, underwear and menstrual hygiene products, to women experiencing homelessness or impoverishment.
- Best Strokes (Hadassah Greater Atlanta)
Hadassah Greater Atlanta's signature Best Strokes: Painting a Brighter Future event drew more than 150 attendees and raised $65,000 for Hadassah’s hospitals. The event brought together stunning artwork of breast cancer survivors’ painted breasts, powerful survivors' and thrivers' stories, and a video screening of a live body painting.
Meet Datya, Breast Cancer Survivor
When Datya Itzhaki, an Israeli breast cancer patient, was diagnosed with stage four metastatic breast cancer, she was told that she had three months to live. Prof. Beatrice Uziely, head of Oncology and Ambulatory Services at the Hadassah Sharett Institute of Oncology, oversaw Datya’s chemotherapy treatments and was amazed by her patient's full recovery.
"Usually when you are diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer, you can live but you live with the disease. In [Datya’s] case, she is cured," says Prof. Uziely, adding, "It’s an unusual case and a very happy case."
Hadassah’s hospitals are renowned not just for innovative, compassionate care, but for research — including a key study confirming that Ashkenazi Jews have at least a 10 times greater prevalence of BRCA1 gene mutations. "Knowing your BRCA status, even when you’re healthy, helps avoid being diagnosed with an invasive cancer tumor," says Dr. Paluch-Shimon, who established Israel's first dedicated services for young women with breast cancer.
Listen to Hadassah On Call’s latest podcast episode, "Breast Cancer: Early Detection, Higher Risks and the Effect of COVID-19 – New Updates!"
Watch this video featuring breast cancer survivor Datya Itzhaki who received lifesaving treatment at Hadassah’s hospitals.
Learn about new breast cancer treatments from Hadassah doctors, including the use of liquid biopsies that help specialists detect cancer earlier.