Southampton-based The International Breast Cancer Surgical Mission (IBCSM) is preparing for its latest visit to the Dominican Republic where they will provide life changing services – including breast cancer screenings and diagnoses, and surgeries for malignancy and adjuvant therapies – in low income areas completely free.
In both developed and undeveloped countries breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, according to the World Health Organization. Breast cancer causes 458,000 deaths each year, and more than half of those deaths (269,000) occur in middle to lower income countries because residents lack access to early screening and treatment.
Led by Dr. Edna Kapenhas, Medical Director of the Ellen Hermanson Breast Center at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital, IBCSM will travel to Santiago in February and work alongside the Caríbe Breast Cancer Care at the Dominican Republic’s top regional public cancer hospital, Instituto Oncologico Regional del Cibao. This will mark The International Breast Cancer Surgical Mission’s 6th annual medical mission to the Dominican Republic.
“I always wanted to get involved in a medical mission and have the opportunity to help those less fortunate than us. In response to a global need, Caribe Breast Cancer Care was formed,” Dr. Kapenhas explained. “Partnering with the International Breast Cancer Team of Southampton, N.Y., led by me, screening, diagnosis and surgical treatment of breast cancer is now available on the North Coast of the Dominican Republic.”
On Saturday, January 13 you can Get Your Pink On! while supporting IBCSM during a fundraiser at Union Cantina in Southampton. From 7 to 11 p.m. attendees will enjoy an open bar, taco bar, raffles, a silent auction, and dancing.
Funds raised during the benefit will support the medical team’s travels, as well as supplies necessary for the procedures and exams – such as anesthesia, overnight hospital stay, pathology screenings, biopsies, dressing supplies, medications, chemotherapy, bras, wigs, and more. The team works with those who are unable to afford medical care, meaning that early detection is essentially nonexistent and patients are more likely to have advanced cases. Since these patients can’t afford health care, radiation and chemotherapy are typically not an option, however the team aids to arrange and pay for patients to receive these vital services.
“The team will be volunteering in the Dominican Republic to help those in need this coming February free of charge,” Dr. Kapenhas added.
The organization’s mission is to return to the Dominican yearly to screen, diagnose, and treat patients.
Tickets to Get Your Pink On! are $100 in advance and $115 at the door.
Union Cantina is located at 40 Bowden Square in Southampton. For tickets, visit ibcsm.ticketleap.com. For those unable to make the benefit, you can learn more about the mission by visiting www.gofundme.com. For more information about IBCSM, visit www.facebook.com.