September Is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month:
Free PSA Screening at Community Blood Services
September 19-25, 2010
Any man 40 years old or older who registers to donate whole blood or platelets at a Community Blood Services’ donor center or mobile blood drive from Sunday, Sept. 19 through Saturday, Sept. 25 can request a complimentary PSA assay test – a simple prostate cancer screening test that can help detect potential disease – at the time of his donation.
“Offering complimentary PSA testing in honor of National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month is a way for us to say thank you to our donors and show our commitment to the health of our community members,” said Patrice Foresman, recruitment director at Community Blood Services.
Donors can make an appointment to donate online at www.communitybloodservices.com or by calling toll free 1-866-228-1500. Walk-ins to donate whole blood are also welcome but an appointment is needed to donate platelets.
Each year in New Jersey, roughly 7,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer and nearly 1,000 die from the disease, according to the Center for Health Statistics at the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Citizens. The American Cancer Society reports that prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men, with the illness affecting more African-American men than those of Asian or Caucasian descent.
New Jersey donors can donate at the Paramus center, 970 Linwood Avenue West, on Sunday, Sept. 19, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Monday, Wednesday or Friday, Sept. 20, 22 or 24, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Tuesday, Sept. 21 or Thursday, Sept. 23, 12 noon to 7:30 p.m.; or Saturday, Sept. 25, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Lincoln Park center, 63 Beaverbrook Road, Suite 304, is open Tuesday and Wednesday, Sept. 21 and 22, 1 to 6:30 p.m., and Saturday, Sept. 25, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
In New York, donors can donate at the Warwick site, 20 Grand Street near the Mount Alverno Center, on Monday, Sept. 20 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. or at the New Windsor donor center, 575 Hudson Valley Avenue, Suite 206, on Tuesday, Sept. 21, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.; Wednesday, Sept. 22, 4 to 6:30 p.m.; or Saturday, Sept. 25, 8 a.m. to 12 noon.
Foresman said Community Blood Services needs continuous blood and platelet donations if it is going to keep enough blood on its shelves to help patients at the more than 30 hospitals it serves in northern New Jersey and southern New York State. Community Blood Services needs all blood types, particularly Types O positive, O negative and B negative.
PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) is a natural protein produced by normal prostate glands in healthy men. The test measures PSA levels in the blood. An elevated PSA blood level may be a warning sign in men for prostate cancer, other urinary tract diseases or conditions such as benign enlargement of the prostate gland.
Donors will receive a letter with their PSA test results in the mail. Men with elevated PSA levels can then have their primary care physicians review those results.