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Pink and Pint-Sized: Lifesavers Invade Broadview University

Published on March 13, 2014 by Tiffany Coleman

(MERIDIAN) Pink and pint sized. Lifesavers of both kinds recently invaded Broadview University. As part of Heart Health Month, the Boise campus did its part to promote lifesaving efforts. The campus hosted a blood drive in conjunction with the American Red Cross, while the big pink bus from Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center provided mammograms the parking lot.

Twice a year, Broadview University teams up with St. Al’s to bring its mobile breast exam bus to the campus. The 40-foot-long bus is part of an outreach program to encourage more women to get the potentially lifesaving exam. Idaho stats show mammograms are something women put off doing because they cannot, do not, or will not take the time to do it. This is why the bus travels the region and provides the same screening services that can be obtained from Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise.

As part of Heart Health Month, Broadview University-Boise hosted a blood drive in conjunction with the American Red Cross, while the big pink bus from Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center provided mammograms the parking lot (below).

“This bus is on the road just about every day of the year,” Teresa Soldavini, a technician on the bus, said. “We perform thousands and thousands of mammograms each year. We are happy that Broadview University is one of those who are helping to spread the message that we are out here serving a large need.”

The service, which is typically free of cost for the recipient, is available to women between the ages of 35 and 64. Insurance companies—which usually cover mammograms at 100 percent—are billed. Grants are available—thanks to the Susan G. Komen Foundation—for women who do not have insurance.

While 15 women took advantage of the opportunity to receive mammograms in the parking lot, white-coated workers from the American Red Cross were busy accepting pint-sized donations from volunteer donors inside of the campus.

“I work right across the parking lot,” Allen Gamel, a financial advisor at Edward Jones, said. “I donate several times a year, so it was very convenient for me to walk a few feet and do my good deed.”

Healthy donors can donate every 56 days. The entire process—from check-in to check-out—takes about an hour. The actual time it takes to fill a bag with lifesaving blood is between eight and 10 minutes. A single donation can help up to three different people. At the end of the day, 13 lifesaving pints were received; making a difference in what may be 39 lives down the road.

Plans are already in the works for the mobile mammography bus’ return. It will be back in the campus parking lot on Thursday, October 16, as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

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