Donors surpass hospital’s $10,000 goal


GREENFIELD – The names flashed on the screen, one after the other, each united in a single cause.

As supporters tapped away on their Smartphones, pledging their gifts during Thursday’s Women Helping Women event, their names were posted for all to see in real time.

Donor amounts weren’t disclosed, but the quickly rising thermometer alongside the roster, tallying the progress toward a $10,000 goal, showed the generosity of Hancock County residents working to fight breast cancer.

Each year, the Hancock Regional Hospital event caps off the night with a special final fundraiser, challenging the 300-plus gathered to pull out their pocketbooks — or in this case, their phones — one more time to fill a need.

As the donations soared above the $10,000 goal — pulling in $16,133 at last count — cheers erupted.

Those dollars will go toward funding 3D mammography, or digital breast tomosynthesis, a process that produces a more detailed image allowing specialists to detect breast cancer sooner.

At the same time, organizers said, being able to see layers of tissue more clearly prevents false alarms. Doctors can more easily identify problem areas, as well as rule out those that might look suspicious but turn out to be normal.

The recall rate — the number of women called back to their doctor for more tests after a 2D mammogram is inconclusive or shows something concerning — is lowered by as much as 40 percent using the technique, officials said.

That brings peace of mind for patients who are healthy and makes saving lives of those who do have cancer more likely, said Lisa Wood, director of imaging at Hancock Regional.