(Monroe, La.) – Discovering cancers in the earliest stage through screenings can help lead to better outcomes, making it extremely important for the community to get screened for appropriate cancers. Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center and Bradie James’ Foundation 56, will host free breast and colorectal cancer screenings on Friday, Dec. 3, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Walmart parking lot, 2701 Louisville Ave. in Monroe.
These screenings are made possible through a generous donation from former LSU linebacker Bradie James, a Prevention Partner of the Cancer Center. In August, James donated $50,000 to Mary Bird Perkins in honor of his mother who succumbed to breast cancer. Established in 2007, he established Foundation 56 to help fight the disease by raising money to benefit early detection efforts.
“My mom inspired me to create Foundation 56 to ensure women in my hometown have the opportunity to get screened,” said James. “I am partnering with Mary Bird Perkins because of the organization’s long history of providing free cancer screenings to people where they are. With their mobile medical units, they provide high-quality cancer screenings in locations where people may not have as many options for healthcare. I am excited to help provide this service in the name of my mom and for all of the people in the Delta region who deserve access to essential preventative cancer services.”
All screenings are available to those who have not been screened for cancer in the past 12 months. Since its start in the Delta region in late 2020, the Prevention on the Go program has been successful in providing over 550 free screenings thru 60 screening events as well as prevention and early detection education to approximately 4,500 community members in a 12-parish area.
Appointments are required for all screenings. Woman’s Hospital will be onsite to provide mammograms while Mary Bird Perkins will offer clinical breast exams. If an abnormality is found, a nurse navigator will assist screening participants with next steps. To make an appointment, please call (318) 414-9758.
“We appreciate the support of partners such as Mr. James and The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation of Louisiana in offering prevention, education and early detection services to the Delta region,” said Myra Gatling-Akers, regional manager, early detection and education, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center. “Together, we are working to bring our longstanding Prevention on the Go program to help people learn how to prevent cancer and catch it in its earliest stages when it’s most treatable.
During COVID-19, the Cancer Center has taken steps to ensure the safety of both participants and staff. A number of practices are in place to ensure the safety of everyone, such as increased frequency of our cleaning and disinfecting practices for high-touch areas and appointments for all screenings to ensure social distancing. To learn more about the precautions the Cancer Center is taking or to learn more about our community screening program, please visit marybird.org/services/get-screened.
About Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center
Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center is a regional cancer care organization that has been fighting cancer for more than 50 years. The cancer care organization provides care at nine centers in Baton Rouge, Covington, Hammond, Houma, Gonzales, Zachary and Natchez, Mississippi, and its service area encompasses southeast Louisiana and southwest Mississippi regions. Mary Bird Perkins has a strategic partnership with OneOncology and the largest radiation and medical oncology groups from across the area including exclusive partnerships with Southeastern Louisiana Radiation Oncology Group, which provides radiation therapy throughout Mary Bird Perkins’ service areas, Northshore Oncology Associates, serving St. Tammany and Washington Parishes, specifically the communities of Covington and Slidell and Louisiana Hematology Oncology Associates, which services the Greater Baton Rouge area. For more information, please visit www.marybird.org.