Gov. John Bel Edwards has issued a proclamation recognizing October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The Governor’s Mansion is lit in pink in order to raise awareness.
“Unfortunately, women in our state are more likely to die from breast cancer than in other states, and that is not something we should accept,” said Gov. Edwards. “It is a disease affecting women and men of all backgrounds, which is why we need to recognize the signs and symptoms and do our part to support survivors and their families. Together we must work to find a cure. Early detection is the key to fighting this disease and, thanks to Medicaid expansion more than 22,000 additional Louisiana women have had breast cancer screenings and 225 have been diagnosed. Even more lives can be saved if we work together to find a solution."
According to the Louisiana Department of Health and the Louisiana Cancer Control Program, Louisiana women die from breast cancer more than women in almost any other state. Although Louisiana has the 33rd highest incidence of breast cancer, it has the second highest death rate from breast cancer in the U.S. An average of 24.5 per 100,000 Louisiana residents died each year from this disease, while the national average was 21.5 deaths per 100,000. A new report by the American Cancer Society (ACS) finds that while breast cancer rates declined almost 40 percent between 1989 and 2015, there remains a disparity in the mortality rates for white women and black women. In fact, the ACS reports shows that black women in Louisiana are 66 percent more likely to die from breast cancer than white women. This disparity is the highest in the country.
Learn more about the risk factors and the importance of getting screened by visiting the American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org