For seven years, breast surgeon Edna Kapenhas, MD, has been bringing healthcare specialists to the Dominican Republic to provide breast cancer screening, diagnosis, and surgical treatment to those in need.
This February, the director of breast surgery and medical director of the Ellen Hermanson Breast Center at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital will be accompanied by a team of 26 medical professionals who have volunteered their services to the International Breast Cancer Surgical Mission of Southampton, which was founded by Dr. Kapenhas in 2012 as part of Island Impact Ministries.
To help underwrite the cost of the program, a masquerade ball fundraiser will be held Saturday, January 11, from 6 to 10 PM at Union Cantina in Southampton. Advance tickets are $90 each — $100 at the door — and include festive masks, hors d’oeuvres, a taco bar, music spun by DJ Santiago, live performances, a photo booth, 50/50 raffle, and an open bar from 6 to 8 PM.
The team, which includes radiologists, anesthesiologists, sonographers, nurse practitioners, nurses, certified nurse assistants, and a second breast surgeon, are also looking for new or gently-used wigs or prosthetic items, which are being collected at the Ellen Hermanson Breast Center through February 6.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide and the second most common cancer overall. It is a leading cause of cancer death in less-developed countries due to lack of access to early screening and treatment. Breast cancer is also the most frequently diagnosed cancer among women in 140 of 184 countries worldwide. Globally, it now represents one in four of all cancers in women. Since 2008, worldwide breast cancer diagnosis has increased by more than 20 percent, but mortality has also increased by 14 percent, with early detection the key to saving lives.
Island Impact Ministries is a nonprofit organization established in 2003 dedicated to providing medical, educational, spiritual, and construction assistance to the people of the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
To purchase tickets to the masquerade ball, call 631-726-8400, visit the Ellen Hermanson Breast Center in the hospital, or log on to www.IBCSMUS.ticketleap.com. All proceeds will help fund surgeries, anesthesia, overnight hospital stays, biopsies, pathology costs, medications, supplies, and chemotherapy.