From the Executive DirectorEDletter

Dear Friends in Prevention,

This spring, the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) brings vigor, growth, and excitement to our 2015 program and events.

Against the Tide 2015 registration is now open. In this newsletter, MBCC Board of Directors Vice President Lisa Foley shares her experiences with all of us and invites you to get inspired with her to swim, kayak, walk, or run for breast cancer prevention at Against the Tide.

The Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures tour is increasing its reach! Read on to find a Let's Talk Prevention tour location near you and to download the brochure in your language of choice.

As an advocate for prevention, you understand the importance of asking critical questions and advocating for your health. In this newsletter, MBCC Medical Advisor Dr. Michael Misialek provides thought-provoking insight into the recent Journal of the American Medical Association study on breast biopsies.

March is Women's History Month, which reminds us of the strength, intelligence, and compassion of Rachel Carson. Often referred to as "the mother of the age of ecology," Rachel Carson was a pioneer environmentalist. It was she who was among the first to alert the world to the link between environmental contamination and the consequent human health effects including breast cancer. Rachel Carson contributed to beginning the global environmental health movement to which MBCC is dedicated. We acknowledge and honor her for her vision and concern for future generations.

We thank you, our supporters, for your commitment to our mission of breast cancer prevention. Best wishes for a productive and joyful spring season.



Cheryl Osimo signature
Cheryl Osimo
Executive Director

Consider yourself challenged, and join me at Against the Tide at DCR's Hopkinton State Park on Saturday, June 20, 2015.


My name is Lisa Foley and I am the Vice President of the Board of Directors at the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC). More importantly, I am the daughter of a proud survivor.  I am also a sister, friend, neighbor, colleague, and running companion to more people that have battled this dreaded disease than I care to count.


My most cherished roles of wife and very busy, grateful mom are what bring me back every year to the Against the Tide event.  As a mom, I cannot accept that 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed in their lifetime.  While curing cancer is very important work, preventing cancer is of utmost importance.  Prevention is the only way to eradicate cancer.  MBCC is one of the only breast cancer organizations focused on prevention, and that is why I will continue to support it.  It is also the reason my young daughter Grace now participates at Against the Tide. Together we are determined to find the preventable cause in our lifetime.


Please sign up to swim, kayak, walk, or run -- or just come watch this awe-inspiring event.


Are you ready to be awesome with Grace and me? 


Many blessings to you and yours,

Lisa Foley


MBCC Medical Advisor Responds to JAMAJAMA


Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition's Medical Advisor, Dr. Michael Misialek responds to the recent Journal of the American Medical Association study on breast biopsies. 

"Pathologist Responds to Breast Biopsy Diagnosis Study"
How do I know if my breast biopsy is accurate? Who is the pathologist that read my biopsy? These are just a few of the questions you might be asking yourself after having seen the recent Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) study. If you have ever had a biopsy, these questions probably never came up. Now with this study casting doubts on diagnostic accuracy, many people are understandably anxious. The JAMA article has received widespread media coverage

Let's break the study down and ease some anxiety. Perhaps most importantly, this provides a great opportunity to learn about one of the lesser known medical specialties, pathology -- my specialty.

The JAMA study "Diagnostic Concordance Among Pathologists Interpreting Breast Biopsy Specimens," published on March 17, 2015, revealed the following key finding:

 - Overall agreement between individual pathologists' interpretations and that of an expert consensus panel was 75%, with the highest concordance for invasive breast cancer and lower levels of concordance for ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) and atypical hyperplasia.


While the study's findings may not be surprising to physicians who understand the challenges of diagnosing complex breast cases, news of the article could lead to unnecessarily heightened anxiety for patients and the public as breast cancer is a highly publicized and pervasive disease.


Click here for Dr. Misialek's full article.

Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic ExposuresLTP 


Encouraging a discussion between health professionals and their patients

Let's Talk Prevention Tour Collage  


We continue to spread the word about the importance of understanding the risks of toxic exposures. We are pleased to announce that our patient brochure is now available in Japanese, in addition to English, Spanish, and Chinese. We will continue to have our materials translated into more languages in order to help reach as many families as possible. For more information on the Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures tour click here.

Where will the tour be next?

March 1 - 31: MetroWest Medical Center, Framingham


March 1 - 31: Women and Infants Hospital, Hyannis


March 1 - 31: South Cove Community Health Center Adult Medicine Center, Quincy


March 9 - April 3: Holy Family Hospital at Merrimack Valley, Haverhill


March 24: 3rd Annual Mass Water Forum, Boston


April 1 - 30: MetroWest Medical Center, Natick 


April 1 - 30: South Cove Community Health Center OB/GYN Center, Quincy 


April 6 - May 1: Holy Family Hospital, Methuen 


April 9: Volunteer Expo at Prudential Mall, Boston


April 21: Toxic Hot Seat film screening, Hyannis


May 1 - 31: MetroWest Wellness Center, Framingham


May 8 - 10: "Frost Yourself with Kindness" fundraiser, The Shoppes at Bellingham 


If you are interested in learning more about hosting the tour, please contact us. 

How Will You Celebrate Our Environment This Earth Day?Earth


As an advocate for breast cancer prevention, you understand that protecting your health means protecting your environment. We hope you'll celebrate Earth Day with us by demonstrating your support for our Earth and human health. Help us change the legacy of breast cancer for future generations and make this planet one we're proud to pass onto our children.


Please join us in our efforts toward preventing environmental causes of breast cancer through community education, research advocacy, and changes to public policy.


Our earth is substantial in size and scope, and so is your support - no matter how seemingly small. If everyone reading this donates at least $5, it would provide enough resources for our Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures program to educate medical professionals and patients in multiple languages throughout the state. Your generosity would allow us to expand the program into schools with a Let's Talk Prevention program for educators.

Please join us in protecting Mother Earth and prioritizing prevention of breast cancer this Earth Day: take just 5 minutes to donate $5 or more to the health of our planet and those who will inherit it.


Nay to the SprayNSTAR


The Town of Bourne is to be applauded for their recent demonstration of leadership in the matter of NSTAR herbicide spraying on Bourne properties. In previous years the Bourne Board of Selectmen along with Select
Boards/Town Councils of Cape and Vineyard towns passed the resolution submitted by GreenCAPE that opposed the spraying of undisclosed mixtures of
herbicides on private and town-owned lands under the NSTAR electrical transmission lines. Stacks of petitions were collected Cape-wide and personally delivered by GreenCAPE members, Sen. Dan Wolf, and Rep. Sarah
Peake to the office of the NSTAR CEO Tom May. Still, NSTAR (recently rebranded as "Eversource Energy") sprayed their noxious biocides on Cape Cod
and Martha's Vineyard.

On February 10th, the Town of Bourne, MA, held a special town meeting where residents voted in a similar resolution which reads, in part:

"We, the undersigned town, oppose pesticide use along rights-of-way on Cape Cod and ask that NSTAR commit to a no-spray, herbicide-free policy on Cape Cod rights-of-way for the following reasons:

-In general, herbicides are harmful to living organisms. The herbicides NSTAR proposed for use on Cape Cod can migrate off rights-of-way, seep into groundwater and surface water, and potentially expose humans and aquatic organisms to toxic chemicals.

-State policy lags behind current science in the regulation of herbicides. We urge state policy making to review current herbicide regulations in light of latest scientific information."

Click here for the full NSTAR Update, including immediate actions you can take to prevent NSTAR spraying in your community.

Submitted by Sue Phelan ( or 508-362-5927)

In this Issue

Environmental Health NewsNews

"This legislation will preserve vital protections like a state's ability to clamp down on dangerous chemicals, while ensuring that known chemical threats to public health are acted on quickly. It will help ensure that communities in Massachusetts and across the country are protected from chemical spills and clusters of disease that are related to toxic exposures. It will make meaningful, unambiguous and positive progress on updating TSCA. I thank the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition for its dedication to creating healthier communities and support of this bill."
- Senator Edward Markey

Upcoming EventsEvents

Follow our blog to learn more about these events as they approach.
Against the Tide
registration is open!

Toxic Hot Seat Film Screening
Toxic Hot Seat film screening

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About MBCC

The Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) is dedicated to preventing environmental causes of breast cancer through community education, research advocacy, and changes to public policy. MBCC is the only education and advocacy non-profit in the country working closely with an environmental research organization toward breast cancer prevention. Thank you for supporting our efforts toward breast cancer prevention. Learn more.


Post Office Box 222
Rockland, MA 02370 

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If you have any questions regarding this newsletter, please contact Cheryl Osimo at