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Hope Wellness Center

Improving the Patient Experience 

Letter from the Department of Defense

received April 2015

The Department of the Army

Headquarters, U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command

810 Schreider Street

Fort Detrick, Maryland, 21702-5000

Dear Dr. Finestone:

On behalf of the Department of Defense, U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP), I would like to express our sincere gratitude for your exemplary efforts as a consumer reviewer for applications submitted for the fiscal year 2014 Breast Cancer Research Program (BCRP). The continued success of this highly visible and competitive program is dependent on maintaining the highest standards of excellence in scientific peer review. We recognize that you have responded generously with your time and valuable perspective to fulfill the demanding requirements of this peer review process. Because of your hard work and dedication, the BCRP draws that much closer to fulfilling its mission.

Please know you have the thanks and appreciation from researchers, fellow consumers, and the entire CDMRP community. If you have any further questions or concerns please contact our Public Affairs manager, Gail Whitehead, at [email protected], or by phone at 301-619-7783.


Wanda L. Salzer, M.D.

Colonel, U.S. Air Force, Medical Corps


Breast Cancer Survivors and Advocates Call on Congress to Maintain Commitment to Breast Health Care Access; Ensure Treatment Parity. Breast cancer survivors and activists representing Susan G. Komen for the Cure traveled to the nation's capitol on April 16, 2015, to remind our nation's leaders of the importance of access to cancer screening programs, and to call on policy makers to ensure parity of insurance coverage between oral chemotherapy and traditional IV treatments.

Komen and Walgreens Announce New Patient Navigation Program. Susan G. Komen and Walgreens are hoping to reduce breast cancer deaths in 16 cities and a dozen states with $3 million in new grants, announced today, for patient navigation programs aimed at medically underserved and vulnerable people facing breast cancer.

FDA Patient-Focused Drug Development Meeting for Breast Cancer. Sandy Finestone and Karen Durham, Komen for the Cure Advocates in Science Steering Committee Members and Komen Scholars, shared their experiences representing breast cancet patients at a recent meeting held by the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The goal of this meeting was to understand the impact of breast cancer and treatment on daily life. The patient perspective hasn't always been top of the mind for researchers and drug makers, but more and more, patient advocates are getting involved in the research process, ensuring that patients have a voice. 

New CDC Breast Cancer Campaign for Young Women. While rare, breast cancer does affect women under the age of 45. Young women, however, may not realize they are at risk. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's new Bring Your Brave campaign, launched in May, 2015, tells real stories about young women whose lives have been affected by breast cancer. These stories about prevention, risk, and survivorship bring to life the idea that young women can be affected by breast cancer. Through these testimonials, Bring Your Brave aims to inspire young women to learn their risk for breast cancer, initiate a dialogue with their health care provider about their risk, and live a breast healthy lifestyle.

National Minority Health Month. April is National Minority Health Month. As it relates to breast cancer, disparities do not describe all health differences. They are the result of health differences that may arise from inequities, such as differences among populations according to race/ethnicity, ancestry, geography, cultural factors, age and more. Find out more about breast cancer disparities. 

June is Men's Health Month. Most men who are diagnosed with breast cancer have no known risk factors except for older age. However, having a BRCA2 gene mutation, family history of breast cancer, gynecomastia, Kleinfelter’s syndrome and being overweight or obese may also increase your risk. And did you know that the most common sign of breast cancer in men is a painless lump or thickening in the breast or chest area? Talk to the men in your lives about the importance of taking care of their health.

USPSTF Issues Updated Mammography Screening Guidelines. In April, 2015, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued updated mammography screening recommendations that reiterated the group’s 2009 position that mammography should begin at age 50, rather than 40, for women at average risk for breast cancer. For the first time, USPSTF opened up their proposed recommendations for public comment. Komen HQ submitted official comments on behalf of Komen President and CEO, Dr. Judy Salerno, MD, MS. Read more in Komen’s full statement.

From Hope to Healing, You Are Not Alone


Hope Wellness Center is a program of the Association of Cancer Patient Educators

A non profit 501(c)3 corporation

The Hope Wellness Center website, including all of its links to external resources, is designed to provide general information only. The information expressed on this website should not be construed as medical advice. Its purpose is to educate patients about cancer, with the intention of assisting patients and their loved ones in making informed decisions together with their physician.