Event will teach about breast cancer screenings

Annual Pink Tea and Cocktail event will be virtual; will include information session, social time

Gritman+Medical+Center+will+host+its+19th+annual+event+to+raise+awareness+about+breast+cancer%2C+as+well+as+educate+women+about+the+process+of+getting+screened.

LAUREN PETTIT

Gritman Medical Center will host its 19th annual event to raise awareness about breast cancer, as well as educate women about the process of getting screened.

HANNAH FLORES, Evergreen reporter

As of 2017, about 250,520 women were reported to have breast cancer in the U.S. and 37,522 of those cases are centered in Washington, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The staff at Gritman Medical Center in Moscow work to create comfortable environments for their patients, said Adina Bielenberg, Gritman volunteer and event planner. Despite COVID-19 restrictions, the Gritman Women’s Imaging Center will virtually host their 19th annual Pink Tea and Cocktail event.

Bielenberg said the goal of the long-running event is to educate women about the process of mammograms and screenings.

“In 2015, we started to offer both a morning and evening session because we were at full capacity,” she said. “Since there were so many people interested in attending, we expanded to hosting a cocktail hour in the evening, in addition to the tea time in the morning.”

The informational session led by Dr. Christin Reisenauer usually lasts about 45 minutes with an opportunity for socializing after.

Reisenauer, Gritman medical director of imaging, said the event helps patients become familiar with the medical equipment and the staff at Gritman Medical Center, which makes the treatment process easier for them.

“During the event, we also spend a little bit of time hearing [breast cancer] survivor stories, talking about the different medical providers and options available to patients who are going through their treatment, and raising funds for people in the community who may not be able to afford treatment,” Bielenberg said.

She said the event provides an opportunity for the community to come together virtually to support each other on their journey with cancer.

Reisenauer said the staff at Gritman Medical Center pride themselves on having many resources available to their patients. 

“Through the center, they have access to cancer support groups, financial support and even full-service oncology,” Reisenauer said. “At Gritman, we take a holistic approach to cancer treatment. We want to do whatever possible to make the process as easy and comfortable for our patients as we can.”

Reisenauer said she thinks the most rewarding benefit of the Pink Tea and Cocktail event is the increase in awareness about mammograms and screenings in the Palouse region. 

“I feel as though we are able to reach a larger audience now that we are holding the event online,” Bielenberg said. “Normally, there is a limited number of attendees [due to room capacity] but online, there’s no limit to the number of people who have access to the stream.” 

The Pink Tea and Cocktail live stream can be accessed 2 p.m. Tuesday via the Gritman Medical Center Facebook page and YouTube channel.