|Breast Health Center|
Good Samaritan’s Breast Health Center was created in 1993 in response to community concerns and the hospital’s commitment to women and their health care needs. It is the first comprehensive, patient-focused program on Long Island and offers a dynamic multidisciplinary team approach to breast health and breast disease. With early detection, innovative technology and advanced diagnostic and treatment services, more women are surviving breast cancer today. The hospital’s expert oncologists, surgeons, nurses and ancillary medical staff specialize in the treatment of breast disease.
Highest Accreditation Scores From the NAPBC
In 2009, Good Samaritan’s Breast Health Center became the second facility of its kind in New York state to receive a three-year/full accreditation designation from the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC). NAPBC accreditation, administered by the American College of Surgeons, is given only to those facilities that have voluntarily committed to provide the highest level of breast care and that undergo a rigorous evaluation process and review of their performance. Reaccredited in 2012, Good Samaritan’s center earned the highest scores from the NAPBC for best outcomes in prevention, early detection, treatment and survivorship, as well as for providing individualized supportive services for women at all stages of breast cancer.
The Breast Health Center’s services offer a dynamic, multidisciplinary team approach, with dedicated breast imagers, pathologists, referring physicians, surgeons, radiation and medical oncologists, registered radiological technologists, registered nurses and genetic counselors all coming together to provide Long Island’s residents the most timely, state-of-the-art and compassionate care for breast disease.
Support services are available through various departments, including laboratory, rehabilitation, social work, nutrition, pastoral care, palliative care and home health care. Physicians can also prescribe diagnostic imaging services, including computed tomography (CT) scanning, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), position emission tomography (PET-CT), ultrasound and nuclear medicine.
Weekly Multidisciplinary Breast Cancer Conference
In the United States, there are now more than two and a half million women who have survived after being diagnosed with and treated for breast cancer. Early detection, evidence-based practice and innovative breast cancer diagnosis and treatment have been credited with increased survival rates. Good Samaritan’s nationally accredited Breast Health Center specialists treat patients like family, caring for the whole person—physically, emotionally and spiritually—and providing outstanding outcomes right in the community. Newly diagnosed breast cancer patients may have their cases presented at our multidisciplinary breast cancer conference, benefiting from the combined expertise of our specialists in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment who will help craft a tailored approach to the individual patient’s needs. The team includes breast imagers, pathologists, surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, genetic counselors, oncology nurses and nurse navigators. Also, medical students and residents attending the conference receive insight into the diagnosis and management of breast cancer. The ultimate goals are improved patient care and survival.
Who Is Involved in the Medical Team?
Patient Navigation Services
The major focus of the Breast Health Center nursing staff continues to be the education and support of patients, families and friends. Good Samaritan provides personalized support by staff certified in cancer care and patient navigation. Patients with suspicious findings are referred to the navigator to ensure expedited diagnosis, treatment and quality care. The nurses provide care coordination throughout diagnosis, treatment and recovery. They are the liasion for both the patient and family to the multidisciplinary breast team. This program was specifically designed to help patients overcome barriers to cancer care and navigate the health care system in a compassionate, efficient and effective way. When faced with a diagnosis of cancer, patients are not alone. Good Samaritan is with them every step of the way.
Education and Support
To help protect women’s health and provide informed decisions, Good Samaritan’s Breast Health Center offers a comprehensive, patient-focused array of services. These include prevention, early detection and diagnosis, positive reinforcement through counseling and support, and effective treatment using the latest, advanced procedures and equipment in the battle against breast disease. Women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer can overcome their fears and work through their concerns through a wide range of counseling and support services. With continuing education of the team, as well as research and clinical trial enrollment, the Breast Health Center also educates the community through lectures, health fairs, screening events and self-breast exam classes—all part of the comprehensive program.
Through an exclusive arrangement with A Personal Touch II Boutique, a wide range of specially made bras, prostheses, wigs, turbans, mastectomy swimsuits, lymphedema garments, fragrances and small gifts are available at the hospital. Private dressing rooms allow for personalized fittings.
For more information, call (631) 376-3737.
Look Good…Feel Better
Classes for women undergoing treatment are sponsored by the Cosmetic and Fragrance Association, in cooperation with the American Cancer Society, to promote self-confidence, poise and the inner strength to better cope with this disease.
For further information or if you wish to make an appointment with the Breast Health Center coordinator, please call (631) 376-3736.
Women’s Imaging Center
State-of-the-Art Breast Imaging Facility
In conjunction with Good Samaritan’s Breast Health Center, the staff at the Women’s Imaging Center, a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence, collaborate with the dedicated breast surgeons, pathologists, referring physicians, and medical and radiation oncology staff at the hospital. The radiologists, nurses, registered radiological technologists and patient navigators have special expertise in all aspects of breast imaging to provide the latest in screening and full-field, digital mammography services. These procedures minimize patient discomfort, while facilitating the most accurate diagnosis for a wide variety of breast abnormalities. Services include:
Mammography Screening and Diagnostics
A baseline mammogram is recommended for women between 35 and 40, with yearly screenings starting at age 40 for those with average breast cancer risk. Women at elevated risk should speak with their physician about earlier screenings and the addition of other modalities. When a mammogram using sophisticated equipment is performed, a physician has the greatest opportunity to detect breast cancer at an early, curable stage. Good Samaritan’s Women’s Imaging Center hosts a range of diagnostic technologies to help physicians identify areas of special concern and is the only facility in Suffolk County with 3-D digital tomosynthesis. This advanced, FDA-approved method is specially designed to detect abnormalities in dense breast tissue.
The diagnosis of cancer is a major life-changing event. Upon hearing the words "cancer" a patient, as well as their loved ones, are thrown into a whirlwind of emotions ranging from fear, to anger, to denial, to overwhelming stadness. it is difficult enough to deal with the physical challenges of cancer and treatment, but the emotional impact can be an even greater burden. Patients and loved ones need a "safe place" where they can share these feelings with other people who truly understand. Cancer support groups are designed to provide a confidentail atmosphere where cancer patients can share these stresses with others experiencing similar situations.