Advocates: LI cancer cluster maps need to be updated

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There is a renewed push on Long Island to update cancer cluster maps that show where the disease is prevalent in the area.

The push comes during Breast Cancer Awareness month.

Lorraine Pace made the first-of-its-kind breast cancer cluster map in 1992 after discovered that she and nearly two dozen of her West Islip neighbors had breast cancer.

On Monday, Pace stood alongside Geri Barish, another pioneer in the fight against breast cancer.  Nassau University Medical Center dedicated its mobile mammography van to Barish at an East Meadow event.

MORE:  Van schedule for October

Both women say a lot of progress has been made in the last few decades in terms of breast cancer research and treatment, but they say more needs to be done in terms of updating the breast cancer cluster maps.

“Those are very old maps, and all of the information from the Long Island breast cancer study project is up somewhere in the DEC, or the Department of Health, or both.  There's a huge amount of information,” says Barish.

While advocates push for updates, they say they best thing one can do for their health is to get tested.
Part of that early detection is to get a mammogram. The mobile breast Imaging van features both 3-D and digital technology.

“We're able to pick up a lot more cancer, density, masses, calcifications, we see it all,” says Yvonne Drain, of N.U.M.C.

The mobile breast-imaging van will be in several Nassau neighborhoods throughout October, including in Mineola this week, and Roosevelt and Port Washington next week.

Anyone can call to either schedule an appointment at the mammography van or at the Breast Imaging center at NUMC. The main number for the Breast Cancer Screening program is 516-572-3300.

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