A wave of breast cancer awareness comes and goes every October, but for the remainder of the year, some people don’t give thought to one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers among American women.
“Breast cancer doesn’t look at a calendar. It’s striking women every day of every year. So, to encourage women to get an annual screening mammogram, McAllen Medical Center is hosting its first ever Cinco de Mammo celebration,” said Kathleen Levy, Director of Radiology.
The Cinco de Mammo promotion will run Monday, May 5 through Saturday, May 10 with extended hours and special pricing. McAllen Medical Center offers a coupon for a $60 annual screening mammogram for those who do not have insurance or whose insurance plan does not cover the service. To accommodate working women, the Mammography Department will stay open until 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and it will also be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.
“We are making it convenient, and to a certain extent, even fun,” Levy said. “We’ll be dressed in Fiesta colors, serving up virgin margaritas and various Mexican-themed appetizers throughout the week. This event can make a wonderful Mother’s Day gift, since this is also the week of Mother’s Day. This event can be a different way to spend girls’ day out. We’re encouraging everyone to bring your best friends, mothers, aunts and sisters to enjoy some virgin margaritas while you wait for your mammogram.”
McAllen Medical Center is the only health facility in the Upper Valley offering BRCA genetic testing. This is the test made famous by Angelina Jolie, who upon hearing that she was at high risk for developing breast cancer took action with a double mastectomy. BRCA genetic testing is automatically offered to women who have a family history of breast cancer – it does not need to be specially requested. Anyone who gets a mammogram at McAllen Medical Center is asked to fill out a family history questionnaire. The genetic testing is offered to those whose responses on the survey indicate a high probability. Of course, this additional level of screening is optional.
Walk-ins will be seen as long as appointments are available; however, women are encouraged to pre-register for their mammogram during Cinco De Mammo week by calling 956-388-2190. Space is limited, so reserve your spot early.
You can also raise awareness and join the fun by tweeting or uploading an inspirational photo encouraging women to get checked to Instagram or Twitter by using #CincoDeMammo.