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Edith Sanford Breast Center now offers personalized breast risk assessments

Sanford expands partnership with Athena Breast Risk Assessment

FARGO, N.D. – The Edith Sanford Breast Center (ESBC) now offers patients in Fargo/Moorhead even more options to learn their individual risk of developing breast cancer through a personalized risk assessment. ESBC, which is part of Sanford Health, is expanding its existing partnership with the Athena Breast Health Network, a University of California program, to advance the use of this risk assessment.

Edith Newsroom

Women who receive a mammogram at ESBC in Fargo/Moorhead can complete the Athena electronic breast health questionnaire, which then creates a personalized breast cancer risk profile. The risk assessment evaluates many risk factors for developing breast cancer including family history, lifestyle and genetic predisposition. Patients can complete the profile prior to their appointment through an emailed questionnaire.

The evaluation creates a personalized risk report for patients with an elevated risk, which explains what contributes to the elevated risk, and recommendations are made for follow-up preventative care.

Sanford patients who complete the survey and are found to be at elevated risk will be contacted by a breast health specialist who is a nurse specially trained in breast cancer risk assessment. The specialist works with a woman to help her better understand her risk, connects her with resources to address risk reduction and assists in coordinating appropriate breast cancer screenings.

Sanford first partnered with Athena Breast Health Network in 2013. For more information, please visit cancer.sanfordhealth.org, keyword: Athena Program.

About the Edith Sanford Breast Foundation
The Edith Sanford Breast Foundation is pioneering a bold new comprehensive approach to breast cancer, with a mission to unlock each woman's genetic code, advance today's prevention and treatment, and end breast cancer for future generations. To learn more, please visit edithsanford.org.

About Athena Breast Care Network

The Athena Breast Health Network (Athena) is a unique collaboration among the five University of California (UC) medical/cancer centers (UC Davis, UC Irvine, UCLA, UC San Diego and UCSF), the Graduate School of Public Health at UC Berkeley, and many other public and private partners. The Network takes a transdisciplinary approach by design, and its participants work together across fields including: epidemiology, genetics, molecular biology, psychology and social and behavioral sciences, primary care, radiology, pathology, oncology, surgery and health services research. Also included are clinical staff and genetic counselors, health information technology professionals, health care administrators, and importantly, patient advocates.

Athena is integrating clinical care and research in order to revolutionize the delivery of breast care. By standardizing the collection of data from both patients and physicians, integrating molecular profiling at the time of breast cancer diagnosis, and creating an unparalleled biospecimen repository, Athena will enable personalized care informed by science and will fuel continuous improvement in treatment options and outcomes.

Key components of Athena include:

  • Identifying women at high risk for breast cancer who will be offered prevention services and decision support
  • A comprehensive informatics strategy that includes tools to collect, analyze, and distribute clinical and research data in real time
  • Web-based decision tools for patients and providers to translate clinical evidence into actionable treatment options – allowing physicians to tailor treatment to biology, patient preference and clinical performance
  • A data and biospecimen repository to support large-scale, longitudinal studies that will enable tailored prevention and treatment strategies

Underpinning these goals is a culture that supports continuous improvement, as well as a commitment by Athena clinicians and researchers across California to share data. With this unique collaboration, Athena aims to change the options for patients today and create a better future for all women at risk of developing breast cancer.

UC Disclaimer

The information stated above was prepared by Sanford Health and reflects solely the opinion of the health system. Nothing in this statement shall be construed to imply any support or endorsement of Sanford, or any of its products, by The Regents of the University of California, its officers, agents and employees.


Nadine Aljets

Sanford Health Media Relations

(701) 200-6080 / nadine.aljets@sanfordhealth.org

@SanfordNadineA