WILLIAMSON – October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Monday, October 3rd, will be observed as Breast Cancer Awareness Day in the local Tug Valley Area.
The featured speaker will be Vicki Hatfield, Nurse Practitioner, at the Williamson Health and Wellness Center in Williamson.
Hatfield is a Certified Family Nurse Practitioner employed by Williamson Health and Wellness Center. Prior to becoming a nurse practitioner, she worked in various nursing roles in the Tug Valley Area, including working at both local hospitals in pediatrics, medical-surgical and surgery units. She was also a Health Occupations instructor at Mingo County Vo-Tech and the Education Director at Williamson Memorial Hospital.
Since becoming a nurse practitioner 10 years ago, her primary focus has been health promotion and diabetes care. She is a Certified Diabetes Educator, Certified Insulin Pump Trainer and is Board Certified in Advanced Diabetes Management. She was one of the co-founders of the Mingo County Diabetes Coalition and has been successful in obtaining grant funding for several health-promotion projects in Mingo County. She most recently served as principal investigator for a research project with Duke University and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. This project, the South Eastern Diabetes Initiative, was successful in improving patient outcomes and reducing health care costs with the implementation of home visits utilizing community health workers. She recently co-authored an article for the journal, AADE In Practice, “Partnership with Community Health Workers Extends the Reach of Diabetes Educators”.
Since the most common risk factors for development of diabetes are obesity and inactivity, Vicki encourages patients to make small but significant lifestyle changes to improve their health and live a happy and healthy life. By becoming more physically active and reducing weight, many patients are able to prevent development of diabetes, heart disease and hypertension as well as to lessen depression. Involving entire families in promotion of healthier lifestyles is one of her favorite strategies for improving the overall health of a local community.
In 2016, over 1,300 West Virginia women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and approximately 300 women will die from the disease. Breast cancer continues to be a leading cause of cancer related deaths among West Virginia women. A woman has about a 1-in-8 (12 percent) chance of developing breast cancer in her lifetime and about a 1 in 36 (3%) chance of dying from the disease.
The best method to reduce deaths at the present time due to breast cancer is through early detection of the disease. Women age 50 and older should have a mammogram every year. Women 40-49 should talk to their health care provider about their screening schedule. Clinical breast exams by a physician or nurse are recommended every three years for women in their 20s and 30s, and every year for women 40 and over. Breast self-exam (BSE) is an option for women starting in their 20s. Women should be told about the benefits and limitations of BSE.
Clinical breast exams, breast self-exams, and mammograms can save lives. Women should talk to their health care provider about their individual screening schedule.
The GFWC-WV Williamson Woman’s Club, in conjunction with the Mingo County Health Department and the West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program, invite local women to the annual Breast Cancer Awareness Day Program on Monday, October 3rd.
The event is scheduled to begin promptly at 12:00 Noon at the First United Methodist Church on West Second Avenue in Williamson.
At 11 a.m., prior to the luncheon, the Wildwood Garden Club will hold a “re-dedication” of the Planet Pink Garden located on Logan Street next to the Mingo County Courthouse.