(ATHENS, Ohio - Sept. 23, 2016) Following its debut appearance in Athens last year, the prestigious Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure will make a return engagement Sunday, Oct. 23. The race, which raises money toward finding a cure for breast cancer, is run in cities all over the United States and in other countries. In addition to Athens, race venues in Ohio this year include Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Akron, Toledo and Findlay.
The Heritage College, which has had a long and deep relationship with Komen, will once again serve as a sponsor of the race, and is also putting together a team, “Passionate Soles for a Cure,” to take part in it. Assistant Professor of Family Medicine Tim Law, D.O. (’94), M.B.A., will again serve as medical director for the medical aid stations for runners and walkers. Heritage College medical students and College of Health Sciences and Profesions nursing students will staff the stations. Heritage College students who volunteer in connection with the race will earn points in the T.O.U.C.H. service learning program.
Anyone who wishes to donate to the cause, or register to run in the Athens race, create a team, or join an Passionate Soles for a Cure, can do so at http://bit.ly/PassionateSoles.
As he did last year, Heritage College Executive Dean Kenneth Johnson, D.O., plans to run in the race with his family. “Komen has been an invaluable partner in our work to improve the health of women in our state,” he said. “It’s great to see the Race for the Cure returning to Athens, and I hope it becomes an event that people look forward to every year.”
Community Health Programs (CHP) has long enjoyed support from Komen Columbus for breast health initiatives in the Appalachian Ohio counties it serves. Susan G. Komen Columbus, through its Breast and Cervical Cancer Project, is a major funder, along with the Osteopathic Heritage Foundation, of CHP’s Healthy Adult Project: Breast Screening Program (HAP:BSP), a program designed to increase early diagnosis of breast cancer.
HAP:BSP provides breast health services at the Heritage Community Clinic in Athens, and on a fully equipped mobile unit that travels throughout southeastern Ohio. The goal is to decrease late-stage breast cancer diagnosis rates by offering breast health education, breast cancer screenings, clinical breast exams, vouchers for mammograms and other breast diagnostic referrals and follow-ups.
According to Kathy Trace, R.N., director of CHP and the Area Health Education Center at the Heritage College, Komen has supported CHP programs for at least 16 years, and has provided more than $1 million in funding for area women to get screenings, mammograms, and referrals if they need follow-up care.
CHP estimates that in 2015-16 the HAP:BSP program provided clinical services valued at over $65,000, which included screening 266 women at 51 clinics around the region. Of women served by the program who responded to a survey, nearly half said they did not have health insurance, and 69 percent said that without the program, they would have gone without breast and cervical screening.
Last year CHP replaced one of its two existing mobile clinics with a new 40-foot mobile unit so it can continue providing health care on wheels as it has been doing for more than 20 years. The new mobile clinic was made possible by funding from the Osteopathic Heritage Foundation, with additional support from Komen Columbus.
Trace said she’s excited to see Komen’s Race for the Cure returning to Athens, and hopes Heritage College staff and students will again turn out to support the event as volunteers, participants or donors, in the spirit of a long, strong partnership that has undoubtedly saved lives among southeast Ohio’s women.
The Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine is a leader in training dedicated primary care physicians who are prepared to address the most pervasive medical needs in the state and the nation. Approximately 50 percent of Heritage College alumni practice in primary care and nearly 60 percent practice in Ohio. CARE LEADS HERE.