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Just Sayin’: Support for cancer screening

Helen Darling of the San Antonio Silver Stars

Helen Darling of the San Antonio Silver Stars receives a screening mammogram at Christus Santa Rosa Hospital-Westover Hills at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas, on Aug. 18, 2009. Credit: Getty Images

Based on past numbers, this year 110,000 New Yorkers will hear the life-changing news that they have cancer. It’s likely that more than 16,000 will learn that they have breast cancer. As I know from personal experience, this will not only deeply affect the person hearing the news, but also family and friends.

Early detection is a proven way to save many lives. This is done through access to timely screening, something many New Yorkers do not get. I urge our state leaders to support the plan Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced during his State of the State message, to emphasize the importance of cancer screening and to make it more available.

While all cancers cannot be detected early, three of the most insidious — cervical, colorectal and breast — can be discovered at more manageable stages through relatively simple screenings. My mother died after her third brush with cancer, but survived her first two experiences with the disease because of early screening.

To save lives, I ask our state legislators to support the governor’s proposal.

Christy M. Manso

Hauppauge

Editor’s note: The writer is a volunteer with the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network.

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