Breast Cancer Awareness Month: How 10 hospitals are taking part

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. 

Here is how 10 hospitals and health systems are participating.

1. Carteret Health Care in Morehead City, N.C., has a pink spotlight on the exterior of the medical center in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, according to a Carteret County News-Times report. The lights serve as a visual reminder for women and men that all cancer screenings can save a life. The lights were suggested by the hospital's breast cancer surgeon, Mindy Merritt, MD. They will be on from dusk to dawn for the entire month.

2. Employees and others at CHI Health Mercy Hospital Council Bluffs (Iowa) released pink balloons into the air during the hospital's annual Breast Cancer Awareness Month tribute outside the hospital Oct. 1, according to a Daily Nonpareil report.

3. George Regional Hospital's campus in Lucedale, Miss., was filled with pink pumpkins in support of breast cancer awareness during a 5K fun run and walk Oct. 3, according to a report. The event included a shorter one-mile fun run immediately following the 5k event, as well as the stiletto sprint. For the stiletto sprint, contestants were encouraged to bring their highest heels to see who could cross the finish line first. Last year the event raised more than $5,000, part of which went to the Long Beach, Miss.-based Pink Heart Funds to provide wigs for those undergoing chemotherapy, according to the report. The other funds went to the Hattiesburg, Miss.-based Pink Ribbon Fund, which helps with medical bills and transportation.

4. Houston Methodist Willowbrook is also shining a pink light on the exterior of the campus during the month of October, according to a Cypress Creek Mirror report. The lights first came on during a Breast Cancer Lighting Ceremony Oct. 1. Sucre Woodley, director of marketing and public relations for Houston Methodist Willowbrook, said in the report the hospital hopes lighting the buildings raises awareness for women to get their screening mammograms.

5. HSHS St. Elizabeth's Hospital and HSHS Home Care Southern Illinois in Belleville, Ill., will host a Think Pink for Breast Health Awareness Event Oct. 17. As October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month, the event will include information on preventative breast health, breast cancer services and breast cancer support. Additionally, information will be provided by HSHS St. Joseph's Hospital – Breese, Ill., HSHS St. Joseph's Hospital – Highland, Ill., Springfield, Ill.-based HSHS Medical Group, Decatur-based Cancer Care Specialists of Central Illinois, Swansea, Ill.- based Memorial and St. Elizabeth's Cancer Treatment Center, and Springfield-based Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program. Guests of the event are encouraged to wear pink in support of breast health and to help bring awareness in their communities.

6. Workers at LewisGale Medical Center in Salem, Va., are taking part in a breast cancer awareness video contest, according to a WDBJ report. Participants used Bruno Mars's "Uptown Funk" to try and dance their way to the top. This year's video features first responders, hospital staff, students from the region and other friends. The winner of the video contest gets $10,000 to donate to the breast cancer charity of their choice.

7. To help promote breast cancer awareness, Naval Hospital Pensacola (Fla.) will participate in the Moral, Welfare and Recreation 5K/walk Oct. 16 aboard Naval Air Station Pensacola, according to a report published by DVIDSHub.The annual event helps raise awareness about breast cancer and representatives from the hospital will be present to educate everyone present on the dangers of breast cancer and the importance of knowing how to perform a self-exam. There will be educational materials, self-exam cards and interactive displays to demonstrate what a lump would feel like. Additionally, the hospital will post facts and information about breast cancer on its Facebook page throughout October.

8. Providence Saint John's Health Center in Santa Monica, Calif., kicked off Breast Cancer Awareness month with a celebration. Survivors were on hand for the occasion, including three women who bonded during their cancer treatments, one woman who wanted to give back and now teaches yoga to breast cancer patients at Saint John's and another who found a family cancer history she'd never known, according to Saint John's. The hospital was lit in pink, a month-long symbol of its continuing success in the battle to beat breast cancer, and as a tribute to its courageous survivors. The exterior pink lights will be lit each night through October.

9. At Southampton (N.Y.) Hospital, the Ellen Hermanson Breast Center and the Coalition for Women's Cancers organized numerous events to increase awareness and raise money in support of local cancer survivors, according to a report from The East Hampton Star. They included a paint Southampton pink event, where the Coalition for Women's Cancers at Southampton Hospital hung pink ribbons along the streets of hamlets and villages throughout Southampton.

10. St. Thomas More Hospital in Cañon City, Colo., is organizing a free girl's night out in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The Margaritas and Mammos event is scheduled for Oct.19. The hospital is encouraging women to bring their mothers, daughters, sisters, friends or co-workers as the event will highlight the importance of knowing your family history of breast cancer, according to a KRDO report.


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