Young survivors in the south have found an ally in the fight against breast cancer in the CDC. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recently given a $2.24 million grant to the a group of advocates servicing Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing along with the Louisiana Cancer Prevention and Control Programs at the Louisiana State University Health New Orleans School of Public Health and the University of Mississippi Medical Center have been tasked to create the Gulf South Young Breast Cancer Survivor’s Network.
Once upon a time, we thought that the needs of all women diagnosed are the same. However, this group recognizes that depending on their age, these women also face different needs and issues in relation to having breast cancer. For example, a woman in her 50s may not be concerned about having children after her chemotherapy is done as opposed to a woman in her early 30s.
Information about fertility, sexuality, financial and professional ramifications of the disease are just some of the unique issues faced by young survivors. Women under 50 are avid smart phone users and having these resources available online will enable women living in the rural areas to gain access to this valuable information. They want to help survivors through their diagnosis, treatment and recovery as well as assist them in improving their quality of life.
The battle is different for every survivor. However, belong in a group of people sharing the same journey can surely make the journey less lonely and more bearable.