MCC 2007 Spirit of Collaboration Award Winner Montcalm County Breast Health
About the Initiative The Mid-Michigan District Health Department, in collaboration with the Montcalm Community College Nursing Program, developed a community outreach plan to reach the underserved and uninsured women of rural Montcalm County. The plan provided community outreach educational presentations to at-risk women by the nursing students.
Five free breast screening clinics were established at various locations in the county. The free breast clinics were funded by Susan G. Komen of Grand Rapids. Spectrum Health donated 40 mammograms and the radiological interpretation for the women seen in the clinics. United Lifestyles received funding for a breast cancer support group, and referrals and information were provided to patients seen in the clinics.
Impetus for the Collaboration
A local factory was scheduled to close, resulting in the loss of approximately 3,000 jobs. The closing of the factory has increased the number of uninsured, low-income women in the community.
Results Community outreach education was provided to more than 300 women. Forty-four women were seen in the five breast screening clinics, and more than 20 additional women were referred into existing breast and cervical cancer screening programs. As a result of the successful collaboration, they received continuation funding to expand the clinics to 12 per year. Spectrum Health donated 50 mammograms and, with the additional funding, they were able to purchase an additional 50 mammograms.
Lessons Learned Clear documentation of the steps for patient referral, scheduling, billing, and follow up is essential. With multi-agency involvement, it was most beneficial to have a planning meeting of the supervisors of each department to meet and plan the flow of the project.
“Montcalm County Breast Health” received the Michigan Cancer Consortium’s 2007 Spirit of Collaboration Award. The annual award is presented to member organizations that have done outstanding collaborative work to significantly move comprehensive cancer control activities forward in Michigan.