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Caring for the Community

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Vicki Winn loves staying busy and being active. She participates in community events such as running and pickleball alongside her husband of nearly 16 years. Her family moved to Mandeville, Louisiana in March 2006 after Hurricane Katrina and immediately fell in love with their new home and the community-oriented Northshore area.

With a history of cysts and as a health conscious person, Vicki knows the value of regular breast cancer screenings. When it was time to schedule her 2020 appointment, she saw an ad for the Live Well Northshore event organized by Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center in Covington. The community event offered screenings for four cancers including breast, colorectal, prostate and skin. The screenings were available free of charge for community members, thanks to the Ben Blanchard Memorial Foundation.

Vicki is insured, but like many people not all of her expenses are covered. This can cause a financial burden, sometimes deterring proper preventative health exams. However, Brittny Costella, early detection specialist at the Cancer Center, explained to Vicki that through generous community donations, the breast screening would be of no cost to her.

Vicki attended the screening and a lump in her breast was discovered. As part of Mary Bird’s screening services, a patient navigator is assigned if any abnormality is found. As a result, a patient navigator worked with Vicki and encouraged her to quickly schedule a mammogram and ultrasound as a follow up.

Vicki’s ultrasound resulted in the need for a biopsy, which was fortunately diagnosed as a benign cyst. Vicki was more than grateful for the entire team for helping her through the process, especially Brittny who was adamant about not letting her delay the screening. “I’m so grateful for her diligence. Things could have been very different without Brittny’s intervention,” she said. “It is that extra effort that makes Mary Bird Perkins so special.”

Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center in Covington has been a trusted community partner for more than 20 years, providing state-of-the art radiation therapy and diagnostic imaging, along with vital support services to patients and families in the Northshore region.

Free screenings are held throughout the year in the Northshore area and include precautions to ensure proper COVID-19 safety measures. To schedule a screening, visit marybird.org/covington or call (985) 276-6810.