Turn To Tara team investigates the racial disparities in breast cancer outcomes
The Turn to Tara team is marking Breast Cancer Awareness Month by shedding light on the disease that is now the leading cause of cancer deaths for Black women.
Nancy DeJoie says dealing with breast cancer is a challenge and a life-and-death situation. After her diagnosis, she quickly learned that far too often women of color die from breast cancer.
Dr. Vivian Bea, director of the breast program at New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, says the staggering cancer mortality gap between Black and white women has persisted for over a decade.
"It should make us all pause and say, 'It just shouldn't happen in the U.S.' But it does, and so it's a Black breast crisis is what I call it, " says Bea.
Data from the tri-state area shows death rates among Black patients are even higher than the national average in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. Research also shows that women of color are more likely to face delays in treatment, get diagnosed at a later stage and have a more aggressive form of the disease - such as triple negative breast cancer, which is more difficult to treat.
News 12 and Spectrum News NY1 are collaborating on a program to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness Month airing Oct. 30 at 9 p.m. The 30-minute special will highlight cutting-edge research taking place in the tri-state area as well as underscore the importance of breast cancer prevention and detection.
Guides and resources:
- Learn about the 7 common symptoms and signs of breast cancer
- Resources to help those facing breast cancer, and their loved ones
- American Cancer Society’s guidelines for early detection of breast cancer
- Self-exam: 11 steps to check for breast cancer
- 8 places to get low-cost or free mammograms
- Getting a mammogram for the first time? Here are 19 things you should expect
- Breast cancer risks: What it means to have dense breasts