MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. — Staff members from Northern Westchester Hospital will walk Sunday in the 18th annual Support-A-Walk for breast and ovarian cancer, an event hosted by the Yorktown Heights-based nonprofit Support Connection.
At 10 a.m., teams of hospital staff will gather at Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park in Yorktown for a walk to support those who suffer from breast or ovarian cancer, and raise funds for the local nonprofit's free counseling and information services.
Team captain Linda McCartney, administrator of the hospital's Institute of Aesthetic Surgery and Medicine and The Breast Institute, will participate in the walk for the fourth time this year.
Her team is a cross-section of medical personnel at the hospital who have direct contact with breast cancer patients: staff from The Breast Institute, the Institute of Aesthetic Surgery and Medicine, and the Women’s Imaging Center. They have raised $11,000 over the past three years by soliciting donations from sponsors.
McCartney said Support Connection is one of the most dynamic groups that support patients in the region.
“To have an organization in our community that works on a one-to-one basis with these women is so important,” she said.
Northern Westchester Hospital has been a proponent of the walk for years, and this year will act as a major sponsor. The two organizations have also collaborated on a series of 14 public educational forums pertaining to breast and ovarian cancer.
These talks are designed to help patients learn more about advances in chemotherapy, the importance of nutrition in cancer care, breast reconstruction, genetics and hereditary risk, cancer diagnosis, and menopause.
Three nurses from the Ambulatory Surgery Center, led by team captain and charge nurse Elizabeth Galloway, make up another team of NWH walkers. The center treats many people with breast cancer before surgery and for recovery and post-op care, so they are familiar with what patients go through at all stages of treatment.
“Anything we can do in the nursing profession to raise awareness about breast cancer is important,” Galloway said, adding that the walk is a great team-building experience for her staff.
Proceeds from Sunday's walk help fund Support Connection’s free support services for patients as well as their families and friends. Offerings include peer counseling, support groups, wellness and educational programs, referral and information services, and a toll-free cancer information and support hotline at 800-532-4290.