Susan G. Komen Arkansas cancels events, closing office

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- Susan G. Komen Arkansas announced Wednesday they have canceled events scheduled for fall 2020 due to COVID-19 and recent CDC regulations on mass gatherings.

The canceled events include Texarkana Race for the Cure, Northeast Arkansas Race for the Cure, Arkansas MORE THAN PINK Walk and Runway for the Cure.

Susan G. Komen Arkansas also announced the National Headquarters of Susan G. Komen has decided to restructure the organization to “One Komen”. According to the news release sent Wednesday, “All Affiliates across the United States, including the Arkansas Affiliate, will close, becoming a united entity, leveraging centralized shared services and a consistent mission program.”

Officials say the Texarkana and Jonesboro offices will close July 3. The Little Rock office will remain remotely open through September, then dissolve into One Komen.

Below is the full news release from Susan G. Komen Arkansas:

SUSAN G. KOMEN ANNOUNCES RE-ORGANIZATION IN MISSION DELIVERY,

OPERATIONS AND EVENT CANCELLATIONS DUE TO COVID-19

June 24, 2020 – CANCELLATION OF EVENTS

As a health organization, the top priority of Susan G. Komen is the well-being of the supporters and community. Due to Covid-19 and recent CDC regulations on mass gatherings, Komen Arkansas has made the difficult decision to cancel the events scheduled for fall 2020. The well-being of all participants, especially Survivors and those living with the disease was the number one priority. Cancelled events: Texarkana Race for the Cure Northeast Arkansas Race for the Cure Arkansas MORE THAN PINK Walk Runway for the Cure

RE-ORGANIZATION IN MISSION DELIVERY, OPERATIONS

Over the last 26 years, with the generosity of local supporters, donors and sponsors, the Arkansas Affiliate of Susan G. Komen has invested $18.5 million to help men and women in our service area (68 Arkansas counties and 2 Texas counties) who are uninsured, underinsured and without access to quality of care for breast cancer. In addition, Komen Arkansas has invested more than $5.3 million in international research programs to find more effective treatments and ultimately a cure for the disease.

Because of the unprecedented health and economic crisis we are experiencing due to Covid-19 across our nation and the world, the National Headquarters of Susan G. Komen has decided to restructure the organization to “One Komen” to ensure that the needs of those served will continue. All Affiliates across the United States, including the Arkansas Affiliate, will close, becoming a united entity, leveraging centralized shared services and a consistent mission program. Susan G. Komen is not leaving Arkansas but adapting to meet the current economic realities and updating mission delivery through modern means, such as technology driven telehealth, a centralized helpline, treatment assistance and patient navigation solutions.

In this increasingly interconnected world, Komen believes it is less important to have a physical location than the ability to meet people where they live and where they access care. Susan G. Komen believes where you live should not determine whether you live.

One Komen will continue the “Four Pillar” approach: Action, Research, Community & Care.

· Action: One Komen will continue to take action through public policy advocacy to increase research funding and break down legal and regulatory barriers to care, ensuring the voice of the breast cancer community is heard by policy makers at all levels of government.

· Research: One Komen will continue to focus on research that will lead to new, more effective treatments. One Komen will invest in innovative programs and leverage Big Data to answer challenging questions in breast cancer and accelerate breakthroughs that will save lives.

· Care & Community: One Komen will continue the legacy of community impact in new and more relevant ways. This means connecting people to needed care and addressing drivers

that affect different communities that lead to poorer outcomes. One Komen will support people no matter where they live, so that we can save more lives.

ARKANSAS & TEXAS KOMEN RESOURCES

In the future, there will no longer be a local presence of Susan G. Komen. However, programs and assistance will still be available through the following resources:

o Current Community Funding by Komen Arkansas Affiliate: Just under $400,000 was distributed in May 2020 for mammograms and diagnostic services in 68 Arkansas counties and 2 Texas counties.

o Current Patient Assistance Fund: $50,000 was distributed in May 2020 to assist breast cancer patients with financial strain during the Covid-19 pandemic. o Breast Cancer Helpline: 1-877-GO KOMEN or helpline@komen.org A team of trained specialists and oncology social workers will provide breast cancer education, mental and emotional support and community resources for those seeking help.

o Online Resources: About Breast Cancer (ABC) section of komen.org is the go-to resource for comprehensive breast cancer information.

o Patient Navigation: One Komen will create a Komen Patient Navigation program to navigate patients among health systems and clinics through their continuum of care.

o Treatment Assistance Program: This current program provides financial assistance for people at or below 250% of the federal poverty level to pay for expenses associated with their breast cancer treatment. Call 1-877- GO KOMEN.

Future Komen Events Local, community-based fundraising and engagement will be critical to One Komen’s ability to fund and support mission efforts. One Komen envisions having local Walks and Races in the future with local Arkansas volunteer support.

Timeline All offices of the Komen Arkansas Affiliate will be closing. The Texarkana and Jonesboro offices will close July 3, 2020, and the Little Rock office will remain open (remotely) through September 2020, then dissolving into One Komen.

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