A Global Conversation

Chris Tannous, center, at conference

Susan G. Komen for the Cure is continually expanding its Global Initiatives and Orange County Board President Chris Tannous is an active participant. At the 2010 Conference of the American Society of Clinical Oncologists, Tannous joined in a roundtable discussion sharing best practices in patient services, outreach and education with the Breast Cancer Network Japan – Akebono-kai.  This was an opportunity to start a dialog with a well-established breast cancer organization in Japan.

At the Conference, Tannous was on a panel along with two medical oncologists, two breast cancer survivors and a translator. The primary areas of discussion were: talking with your doctor, employment issues and patient support services.

Highlights of the discussion included the fact that in Japan a patient would never take someone with them to an appointment, but would instead use a tape-recorder to record the session to share with anyone else. They were surprised to learn that there is an organization like the Cancer Legal Resource Center (CLRC) that can help cancer patients with employment issues.  In Japan, there is no such organization and they were interested in learning more. Although Akebono-kai is celebrating its 30th anniversary, it is only recently that they considered involving spouses in their programs.  The notion of “co-survivor” was completely new, but an avenue that they intend to explore further.  Finally, there was the realization that advocacy comes in many forms – research, fundraising, public policy, patient support and outreach and education.  Although they focus on patient support and outreach and education, they are ready to expand their advocacy efforts.

Tannous, a breast cancer survivor and Komen Advocate in Science, is hopeful that the connection might lead to a global partnership — everyone involved is interested in future collaborations and sharing of best practices.

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Advocates in Science

Komen Advocates in Science Carole Baas, PhD and Chris Tannous, PhD

Chris Tannous is Komen OC’s remarkable board president as well as a dedicated Komen Advocate in Science. Her perspective as a breast cancer survivor provides scientists a unique and valuable outlook on the cancer experience and the urgency of finding the cures. Chris recently represented Komen OC at the 101st Annual Meeting of the American Association of Cancer Researchers. Click here to read an article on her findings from this year’s conference. If you are interested in becoming a Susan G. Komen for the Cure Advocate in Science, go to http://www.komengrantsaccess.org/ and select the advocate link.

California Wins Award for Advocacy

Chris Tannous from Komen Orange County (third from the right) is there as the California Collation is honored for advocacy.

Susan G. Komen for the Cure® awarded its seven California Affiliates with the “State Policy of the Year Award” for their advocacy to ensure access to breast cancer screening and treatment in the face of significant state budget cuts.

The “State Policy Campaign of the Year Award” is presented to a Komen Affiliate or Affiliates who advanced breast health issues and brought positive changes through their public policy initiatives at the state level. The seven Komen California Affiliates formed the California Affiliate Collaborative to work with one voice on breast cancer issues in California.

In 2009, the group supported three bills to expand access to breast health services for underserved women in California. The group protested cuts to “Every Woman Counts,” California’s program to provide free mammography screenings for uninsured and underinsured women who do not qualify for Medicaid, including the elimination of eligibility for women age 40-49. Together, the seven Affiliates have been a vital voice for Komen and women in need across the state.

Chris Tannous, president of the Board of Directors for Komen Orange County, was in Dallas for the award presentation.

The members of the California Affiliate Collaborative, in addition to Komen Orange County, are: Komen Central Valley Affiliate in Fresno, Komen Inland Empire Affiliate in Temecula, Komen Los Angeles County Affiliate, Komen Sacramento Valley Affiliate, Komen San Diego Affiliate and Komen San Francisco Bay Affiliate.

Komen OC’s Grants Award Breakfast!

Komen OC is awarding more than $900,000 in grants this Friday at our annual Community Grants Award Breakfast.
The community groups receiving the grants serve a diversity of key populations in the area, and will use the grants specifically to implement breast health programs and initiatives to promote early detection of breast cancer and provide access to care throughout Orange County in an effort to save women’s lives.

By implementing an extensive range of breast health initiatives, Komen grantees take proactive steps in ensuring that all women and men have access to life-saving breast health care. Last year alone, more than 8,500 uninsured and underserved women were provided assistance in obtaining free mammograms.

The 2009 community grants recipients and their breast health programs are:
· AltaMed Health Services Corporation / Breast Cancer Early Detection and Care Program
· Asian American Senior Citizens Service Center / Strengthening the Ties: A Multi-dimensional Approach to Raising Breast Health Awareness among Chinese American Women
· Breast Cancer Solutions / Medical Financial Aid; Temporary Financial Aid Program
· Kommah Seray Inflammatory Breast Cancer Foundation / Taking Care of Ourselves and Each Other
· Laguna Beach Community Clinic / Breast Care Advocacy
· Latino Center for Prevention and Action in Health and Welfare / Salud de Seno Breast Health Program
· Nhan Hoa Comprehensive Health Care Clinic / Breast Care for Low-Income and Uninsured Young People
· Orange County Korean American Health Information and Education Center / Pink Ribbon Awareness
· Orange County Rescue Mission Healthcare Services / ACT (Access to Care & Treatment) Now Project
· Planned Parenthood Orange and San Bernardino Counties / Breast Health Program
· Share Our Selves (SOS) / SOS Women’s Initiative
· The G.R.E.E.N. Foundation / Be Self Empowered (BSE)
· Vietnamese American Cancer Foundation / Breast Health Navigation and Education Program
· YWCA of North Orange County / Early Breast Cancer Screening and Education

Advocates in Science

Chris Tannous, President of the Board of the Komen Orange County Affiliate, recently wrote an excellent article about the exciting new scientific developments that are moving us toward improved mortality rates for breast cancer in the next decade. Today, advocates play a role in the development of research projects and clinical trial protocols. Chris writes, “Advocates have put a face on the disease and remind scientists that their research must benefit those in greatest need of their expertise and experience.” And as Komen for the Cure founder Nancy Brinker pointed out in her visit to Orange County in June, no major advancement in breast health medicine or research has been made without the funding of Komen for the Cure at some point along the way. It really helps to put into perspective the vital role that Komen plays in the fight to end breast cancer forever. To read Chris’s full article, click on the picture below.

Chris Tannous

Komen OC in the News This Week!

We have been so excited to appear in some Orange County news articles this week announcing the topics of our new Board of Directors and the donation we received from Conquest Racing.
You can see one of these articles, in the OC Metro, by clicking HERE.
A piece on our new President of the Board ran in the Orange County Register’s Fountain Valley View below, as well as HERE online.
Chris Tannous in the Fountain Valley View

Chris Tannous in the Fountain Valley View