Spotlight On Capital Breast Care Center In DC

7:36 AM, Feb 7, 2012   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (WUSA) -- It's been a week since the controversy erupted over the Susan G. Komen Foundation de-funding breast cancer screenings for poor women at Planned Parenthood then reversing its decision.

While the furor has quieted, the controversy did help focus the spotlight on some other facilities that offer breast health services to women in the Metro area regardless of their ability to pay, such as lthe Capital Breast Care Center in Southeast Washington, D.C.

When Margie Singleton first came to the Capital Breast Care Center for a mammogram. She was like millions of Americans in this tough economy who were without a job that provided her with health benefits.

Margie Singleton told us, "I didn't have insurance at the time and I was able to come here and get great care. And I've been coming back ever since."

Caring for Metro area women like Margie, who are under insured or have no insurance at all, has been the mission of the Capital Breast Care Center since it opened in 2004.

The major barriers to preventive health services include lack of access to care and adequate follow-up treatment. Executive Director Beth Beck says the center offers mammograms, clinical and cervical exams, health education, even transportation to and from appointments.

"We screen about 2,000 women each year," shared Beck. 

"Approximately about 1% of the women screened will come up positive for cancer and we navigate about 400 of them for diagnostic care and follow up treatment," Beck added.

CBCC has dramatically increased screening rates and they're are detecting cancers at twice the national average. Biopsies can be performed on site and patients sent to other locations for additional care will have a Patient Navigator by their side. 

Beck said, "We have a pretty wide reach but still a significant population of women don't know we exist."

All women are welcome at the Center, even those who can afford to pay. Remember Margie? She is now employed, with health benefits and paying it forward. She's a volunteer at the center, and her insurance payments help subsidize mammograms for women who are in need. 

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