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Success Stories

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Jeff's Story

63 year old Jeff, from Beckley discovered a lump on his left breast in October. Not having insurance to get a mammogram, he contacted our office. WVBHI paid for Jeff to have a mammogram immediately. The mammogram suggested that Jeff also needed an ultrasound, which led to a biopsy. Jeff was then diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. WVBHI paid for all of the necessary procedures to get Jeff a concrete diagnosis.

Because Jeff is a male, he did not qualify for breast health assistance through the usual routes. He reached out to the James "Tiger" Morton Catastrophic Illness Commission and qualified for assistance through them to begin his treatments. After speaking with one of our breast health Ambassadors, Jeff applied to the University of Virginia Medical Center (UVA). Jeff qualified for treatment at UVA and they graciously took him on pro bono. Currently, Jeff has 2 more infusions left and will then have surgery and radiation. Jeff has become family to many of us, as he is our first "hands on" male with breast cancer. Jeff looks forward to being breast cancer free and helping other men navigate through breast cancer. Jeff’s story is one of many that people like you are helping across West Virginia. Thank you for your continued support!

Ms. Patty's Story

Ms. Patty was 70 years old, when she had her first mammogram. Patty says, "When I would be among my female friends and family, they would be talking about getting their yearly mammograms. I would just nod and say - yes, good for you, do you need a ride?" 

Then one day she noticed a dark spot where her bra touched her shoulder. So she adjusted the strap. The dark coloring continued to spread. Ms. Patty, finally had her first mammogram and it showed Stage 2 breast cancer.

Ms. Patty does not drive, so she was taking public transportation to and from treatments. With a compromised immune system and the continued threat of COVID, this was not ok. A friend of hers contacted WVBHI and we were able to immediately provide transportation through our volunteers, ED and Uber rides.

Since Ms. Patty is on a fixed income, WVBHI was also able to provide Ms. Patty with gift cards for medication co-pays, electrolyte waters, groceries, etc. 

Ms. Patty is still going through treatments and is now a huge advocate of getting screened!    

Last year, Lora was still under the age for an approved mammogram from her insurance company. WVBHI was able to follow up to make sure Lora got her mammogram in November.

CHRISSY FROM CLENDENIN

Chrissy is from Clendenin. She was diagnosed with breast cancer and was being treated at CAMC in Charleston. Fortunately she was able to apply for and be approved for a WV Medical Card through West Virginia Breast & Cervical Cancer Screening Program.

Twice a week for 6 months, she and her husband Ron, made the commute for her chemo treatments. It is over 70 miles per trip from her home to the treatment facility. WVBHI was able to provide Chrissy with gas cards to help with the financial burden of her transportation.

Chemo treatments over and on her way to recovery with a very weak immune system, she lost her main source of heat in November 2019. WVBHI was able to purchase and deliver a secondary source of heat.

As of last year, Chrissy is in remission and living life to the fullest.

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DELVIA FROM ANDERSON

WVBHI provides financial based needs assistance to those suffering from breast cancer and their families. Our program helps survivors like Delvia from Alderson, WV.  Delvia was diagnosed in 2016 and was able to attend her first Race on May 5th. Her daughter and granddaughter flew in from Miami to show their support and walk in honor of their Mom and Grandma. Sadly, the very excited Delvia had a stroke half way through the course and had to be admitted to the local hospital. WVBHI was able to immediately secure accommodations and provide financial assistance for her family, who were due to fly out that same day. After 4 days in the hospital, Delvia was released to go home to Alderson and her family was able to fly back to Miami.

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ZENA'S DIAGNOSIS

WVBHI provides immediate phone support and education to those diagnosed with breast cancer on topics such as insurance coverage. When Zena was diagnosed with breast cancer in the fall of 2016, she and her boyfriend Sean, immediately came to the West Virginia Breast Health Initiative office. Our Team at WVBHI were able to provide Zena and Sean the empathy, understanding, compassion, responsiveness and support that so many West Virginians and their families need when facing the frightening initial diagnosis of breast cancer and the impact of treatment. Today, Zena is cancer free and is a proud supporter and advocate for WVBHI.

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