“Check Me Out – I’m Worth It 2” Health Day”

Press Release – Pacifica Newtown

Having mammograms can help to save the lives of our grandmothers, mothers, aunties, sisters and nieces, says Gabby Makisi, President of the local branch of PACIFICA, Vahine Orama PACIFICA Newtown.6 October 2011

“Check Me Out – I’m Worth It 2” Health Day”

Having mammograms can help to save the lives of our grandmothers, mothers, aunties, sisters and nieces, says Gabby Makisi, President of the local branch of PACIFICA, Vahine Orama PACIFICA Newtown.

Gabby Makisi was speaking just before the health day her PACIFICA branch has organised for Saturday 8 October 2011, at the Nokise Hall, PIPC Church, Newtown.

“The main purpose of the day is to encourage eligible Pacific women to have their first free mammogram for breast cancer screening,” Ms Makisi says.

“When we learned from Tagaloa Taima Fagaloa (Pacific director CCDHB) that Pacific women are at very real risk from dying from breast cancer but have one of the lowest breast screening participation rates, we knew we had to act to save lives,” Gabby Makisi says.

Last year, branch members enrolled 16 women between 45-69 years to have their first free mammogram and three of those women needed procedures. This year, 20 women will have a mammogram on Saturday and four more will have their appointments on other days.

“We are trying to raise awareness with our Pacific women about breast screening as a way of checking for breast cancer,” Gabby Makisi says. “Our women also have low screening rates and have a higher likelihood of dying from this disease and we want to stop that.”

The drive to recruit eligible women for their free mammogram grew into a Pacific Health Day based at the Newtown Pacific Islands Presbyterian Church on Daniel Street. This is being repeated on Saturday.

Health providers who will have information stalls at the Health day include: Regional Health, Pacific Health, Compass Health, SKIP, Mary Potter Hospice, Pacific Smoking Cessation, Family Planning, Breastfeeding, sexual health, district nurses and others.

Samoa Capital Radio is also a major supporter of the initiative and along with Catalyst Pacific provide funds and advice for the day.

Vahine Orama PACIFICA Newtown Branch is part of the national organisation of Pacific women known as PACIFICA.

The Health Day is being held on Saturday 8 October 2011 at the PIC Church Hall on Daniel St from 11.00am to 2.00pm.

ENDS

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