A new campaign started by the good folks at Avera Queen of Peace in Mitchell wants to make sure you are getting the necessary screenings you need to stay healthy and if you qualify those tests could be free. Nancy Naeve Brown reports all you have to do is ask.
Avera Queen of Peace in Mitchell is rolling out a new program called ask me about free screenings. The folks here were noticing a lot people who qualified for the free screenings for heart disease, diabetes and cancer weren't taking advantage of the "All Women Count" and "Get Screened South Dakota" programs.
Charlene Berke is the Avera Queen of Peace Cancer Center Radiation Oncology Director and says, "We want to increase participation in the state run programs and also we are taking care of men so we have an equally balanced program for men and women."
Avera Queen of Peace thought some men were falling through the cracks. The only free screenings offered through the state for men were for colorectal cancer. Through the Avera Queen of Peace Foundation men can also now get PSA levels, glucose and cholesterol tests done free. To qualify you have to be a South Dakota resident, between the ages of 30 and 64 and fit into an income guideline.
Avera Women's Clinic in Mitchell Dr. Elizabeth Campbell OB/GYN says, "We are finding that so many of these diseases are completely preventable from a cancer standpoint. That's the one thing I want to get across to people. I think a lot of people believe if they don't check it's not going to be there. It's there and it's all about early diagnosis."
Don't be surprised if you are in Mitchell and see people wearing these Ask Me pins. And don't be afraid to ask. They want you to.
Teresa Wilson works in the Business Office at Avera Queen of Peace. She says, "If you contract Avera Queen of Peace we can certainly go through all the services to see what the needs are that you have and where you fit in."