“Gift of Life” schedules free prostate screenings
Prostate cancer survivor Morris Carter, environmental and public affairs director for Valero Port Arthur Refinery, is serving as honorary chair of the Julie Rogers “Gift of Life” Prostate Cancer Awareness Program’s activities, including its annual prostate cancer screening events. The free screenings, which are available to medically underserved Southeast Texas men, will be held this fall in recognition of National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month:
• Sept. 12 at Lamar State College Carl Parker Center, Port Arthur, 9:00am – 11:00am
• Sept. 26 at the Sterling Pruitt Activity Center, Beaumont, 9:00am – 11:00am
• Oct. 3 at North Orange Baptist Church, Orange, 9:00am – 11:00am
“I admire the work the ‘Gift of Life’ does for our area and I hope my message as a survivor will benefit others,” Carter said. “The key to surviving cancer is early detection, and for those who can’t afford annual screenings, this program is a Godsend.”
Each participant will receive educational materials, a complimentary t-shirt, and healthy living information. There will also be delicious refreshments and door prizes.
One in every six men will develop prostate cancer in his lifetime, and African American men are sixty percent more likely to develop the disease. Statistics show that the five-year survival rate for men whose prostate cancer is diagnosed early is nearly 100 percent. (American Cancer Society)
The “Gift of Life” screens men who are at least 45 years of age (40 if African American or if there is a family history of prostate cancer), have limited income and do not have medical insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or are underinsured. During the fall screenings, nearly 550 Southeast Texas men will receive PSA blood tests from volunteer phlebotomists associated with the Julie & Ben Rogers Cancer Institute and digital exams from local physicians.
Call the “Gift of Life” now to register for a free prostate cancer screening or for more information: (409) 833-3663 or toll-free at (877) 720 GIFT (4438).
“Following the 2008 screenings hosted by the ‘Gift of Life,’ four men were diagnosed with prostate cancer,” stated Nell McCallum Morris, “Gift of Life” Board President. “We are so pleased to have Morris Carter chair our campaign this year because, as a survivor, he understands the great need for annual testing in our community.”
Volunteer physician assistance at the screenings is made available by the “Gift of Life” Prostate Cancer Medical Advisory Board, chaired by John Henderson IV, MD, and other members, Gerardo Chica, MD; Danny Chow, MD; J. Denton Harris, IV, MD; George Hoffman, MD; Joseph Kong, MD, FACR, FASTRO; J. Coffy Pieternelle, MD; Steven Socher, MD; and Albert Ong, MD; along with Chris Polvorosa, MD.
Screening Event Volunteer Chairs are: Eli and Zula Stelly (Port Arthur); Ray Bryant and Harold Steward, PhD (Beaumont); and Joe King and Beverly Perry (Orange).
Eligible clients with abnormal test results will have access to follow-up medical care through a referral link with UTMB-Galveston. During the past nine years, the endeavor has made a significant difference in the lives of thousands of Southeast Texans with the provision of more than 5,100 free prostate cancer screenings.