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EYE ON HEALTH

Fighting breast cancer in Hispanic community

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Maria Pintor, Community Wellness Coordinator, NW Ga Healthcare Partnership says "There's a lot of language barriers, there's a lack of information and education patients may need on breast cancer and nutrition."  

And folks like Felipa Tonoco also don't have transportation to get to wellness classes or mammogram appointments.  That's where Maria Pintor comes in.  She's a primatora or wellness coordinator at Northwest Georgia Healthcare Partnership. A vital resource in the fight against breast cancer.

Through a grant from the Susan G. Komen foundation, and events like Race for the Cure,  the Northwest Ga Healthcare Partnership is able to break down some of those barriers in the Hispanic community.

Felipa was diagnosed in 2010 with breast cancer. One of the most frightening times of her life.

Maria Pintor says "So what she is saying is that she was in shock, but she really didn't have much time to think because she was thinking is this going to be my final ending, breast cancer."      

Having a lifeline or resource like Maria made it just a little easier.

The program provides education classes, navigation, outreach, and screenings. And patients never have to worry about cost or transportation.

Maria Pintor  says "There's still a lot of people who still need to learn about it and we're still out there fighting every day to make sure everybody has the information that they need."  

There is a serious need. -Statistics show Hispanic women develop breast cancer at a younger age, but get exams and diagnosed at a later stage of the disease. So their tumors are often larger and more aggressive.

Felipa had a biopsy and surgery.  She is doing much better today, and is thankful her cancer was caught in time.

Maria Pintor says "She says now she feels happy, she has joy because God has given her life."

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