MIAMI, FLA. – SEPTEMBER 8, 2016 – Today, at the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade’s biennial Breast Cancer Forum, healthcare providers, breast cancer survivors, and leading care advocates from across the nation gathered for the release of the new Avon Foundation funded study: Breast Cancer Among Hispanic Subgroups in the U.S., which was conducted by Sinai Urban Health Institute.

The study is the first and most comprehensive study of its kind to explore breast cancer prevalence and mortality rates among U.S. Hispanics and Hispanic subgroups. The study revealed that breast cancer mortality rates differ for Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, and Central and South American women with breast cancer in the U.S.

Puerto Rican women (19.04 per 100,000 women) and Mexican women (18.78) have the highest breast cancer mortality rates of all Hispanic women with breast cancer in the U.S. Central and South American women in the U.S. were found to be significantly less likely to die from breast cancer than other Hispanic subgroups observed (10.15 per 100,000 women).

“Understanding where the greatest needs are in improving the lives of women with breast cancer is a fundamental first step to bringing about change in how this disease is addressed, particularly in the Hispanic community,” said Cheryl Heinonen, President of the Avon Foundation for Women. “As the company for women, Avon is committed to taking actions that matter most to women and that is why the Avon Foundation is passionate about funding studies like this. We want to identify where the disparities lie so we can effectively shape and support programs that will have the greatest impact.”

At the briefing, remarks from a diverse panel of guests were featured, including: Cheryl Heinonen, Bijou R. Hunt, the author of the Avon Foundation funded study from the Sinai Urban Health Institute at Sinai Health System, Jenny Saldaña, who serves as an Avon Breast Cancer Crusade Patient Navigator at New-York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, and Paola Giorello, a breast cancer survivor who benefited from the Avon Foundation-funded Patient Navigator program at Nueva Vida Inc. in Alexandria, Va.

“What this research has uncovered has the potential to greatly improve individualization of care for Hispanic women with breast cancer,” said Bijou R. Hunt of the Sinai Urban Health Institute. “When healthcare providers begin to view the highly diverse population of Hispanic women as many unique groups – taking into account the ethnic identities, beliefs and cultures that could impact how they experience this disease – providers can better tailor their interventions and be even more culturally sensitive.”

Through the use of multiple national data sources and multiple years of data, the analysis in the Avon Foundation funded study: Breast Cancer Among Hispanic Subgroups in the U.S., presents data on Hispanic subgroups that are not often accessible. More research is needed to understand why the disparities in mortality rates for various Hispanic subgroups exist. A wide number of factors including genetic traits, and differences in diet and lifestyle that may vary by culture could have a role to play in these variances; but more exploration is needed for these to be determined.

There are 56.6 million people of Hispanic origin in the U.S., making them the largest racial/ethnic minority in the country1. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Hispanic women, as well as the leading cause of cancer death for this group2. This research is a promising step toward better understanding and addressing this group’s diverse health needs.

The Avon Breast Cancer Crusade which launched in 1992, has placed Avon and the Avon Foundation for Women at the forefront of the fight against breast cancer. Today, Avon is the leading corporate supporter of the cause globally, donating more than $800 million to breast cancer programs for research and advancing access to care, regardless of a person’s ability to pay.

Sources:

1 U.S. Census Bureau. Annual Estimates of the Resident Population by Sex, Age, Race, and Hispanic Origin for the United States and States: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015.

2 Society. AC. Center Facts & Figures for Hispanics/Latinos 2015-2017. In. Atlanta: 2015.

About the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade
Since 1992, the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade has been working to improve breast cancer outcomes and reduce disparities in survival rates. The Crusade’s strategic grant making reflects: a holistic and place-based approach in high-need areas throughout the United States; a commitment to enabling access to medical advances and support services for breast cancer patients, particularly those from vulnerable populations; and a commitment to investing in research on the prevention, diagnostics, and treatment of breast cancer. In the U.S., Avon Breast Cancer Crusade manages the Avon Foundation for Women’s breast cancer programs. The Avon Foundation for Women partners with affiliate Avon Foundations and Avon markets around the world for additional programming. In total, Avon and the Foundation have contributed more than $800 million to breast cancer programs around the world through 2015. To learn more, visit: www.avonfoundation.org.

About Avon and the Avon Foundation for Women
Avon is a global corporate leader in philanthropy focused on causes that matter most to women. Through 2015, Avon and the Avon Foundation for Women have contributed over $1 billion in over 50 countries. Avon’s funding is focused on breast cancer research and advancing access to quality care through the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, and efforts to reduce domestic and gender violence through its Speak Out Against Domestic Violence program. The company’s global markets sell special products to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer and domestic violence, conduct hundreds of events for these causes, and educate women around the world through its global network of nearly six million Avon Representatives.