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Dana-Farber Community Vans Providing Cancer Screening In Greater Boston

By Dr. Mallika Marshall, WBZ-TV
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Dr. Mallika Marshall, WBZ-TV Medical Reporter Dr. Mallika Marshall
Dr. Mallika Marshall is WBZ-TV News’ Medical Reporter and contributes...
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BOSTON (CBS) – 52-year-old Maria Teixeira gets annual mammograms on the Dana-Farber Mammography van at the Dimock Center in Roxbury.

“It’s in my neighborhood,” she said. “ It’s right here.  I don’t need to take buses.”

The van travels to communities within the city of Boston as well as outlying areas like Waltham, Brockton, and Quincy.

“We work with the health center staff and they help schedule the women and all the women have to do is come to a place that they recognize and feel comfortable in,” said Magnolia Contreras, the Director of Community Benefits at the Dana-Farber.

Dr. Myechia Minter-Jordan, President and CEO of the Dimock Center, said community vans are a great way to eliminate barriers.

“Our patients are balancing whether or not they can afford their medications,” says Dr. Minter-Jordan.

“They are balancing the bills we have in our homes with trying to make sure they’re taking care of their healthcare needs. So by reducing some of those barriers, you’re really opening up women to the possibility of great breast health right in their neighborhood,” she told WBZ-TV.

The Dana-Farber also runs the Blum Family Van which goes out every summer to do skin cancer screening and education. It travels to beaches around Boston as well as the Cape.

The van is staffed by dermatologists at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

“It’s the right time and the right moment to think about this,” says Dr. Joe Merola, a Brigham dermatologist who works on the van every summer.

“You’re laying out in the sun.  It’s an ‘intervenable’ moment where we can say, ‘Look, let’s talk about sunscreen and sun protection.  Let’s talk about coming to the beach and enjoying the outdoors but doing it safely,’ ” he added.

Nancy Glass, who has had skin cancer before, just had her exam and got good news.

“Great,” said Glass. “I’m clean.”

For more information about the Dana-Farber Mammography Van or the Blum Family Van, go to the following:

Dana-Farber Community Outreach Section

Dana-Farber’s Mammography Van

Dana-Farber’s Mammography Van Schedule

Blum Family Resource Center

Skin Cancer Screening Calendar

The Dimock Center

MORE LOCAL NEWS FROM CBS BOSTON

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