January 27, 2021

Cancer Advocates Rally Virtually At The Capitol

Lisa Hayes, the executive director of Reaching to End Disparity Alliance, is a breast cancer survivor of  almost 14 years. - Headshot provided by Michelle Zimmerman

Lisa Hayes, the executive director of Reaching to End Disparity Alliance, is a breast cancer survivor of almost 14 years.

Headshot provided by Michelle Zimmerman

Over 40 people gathered virtually Wednesday to call on Indiana lawmakers to preserve funding for the state’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Program.

Lisa Hayes, the executive director of Reaching to End Disparity Alliance, is a breast cancer survivor of  almost 14 years. She said it was programs like BCCP that helped pay for and access the services she needed, and since completing her treatment, she’s come full circle in helping others receive services.

“It was very natural for me, you know, to be a supporter of this program, not not just for my work, but for me personally and for, you know, all the 1000s of women in Indiana who could benefit from the program," Hayes said.

She said on top of needing more funding, the pandemic has created both a backlog of women needing services due to months of limited services, but also increased fear to seek services.

“So even though you know, facilities have reopened and started doing screenings, again, some women are still hesitant to go get their screening because of safety concerns," Hayes said. "So, that is going to also contribute to a backlog of women that need to be screened and delays in diagnosis of some women.”

Hayes said she hopes today will help legislators recognize the need for more services and continue funding the BCCP program.

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