I am very fortunate to be affiliated with Glendale Adventist Medical Center's Oncology unit. I started my Create to Heal (tm) program in early 2010 and Glendale Adventist was the first medical center to embrace my teachings and classes. I am now working very closely with the oncology unit and their incredible nursing staff ... who are some of the finest, most compassionate, competent health care professionals you will find anyway. I learn a lot from them and from their patients. Yesterday, we had a discussion on Angelina Jolie's decision to have preventative surgery because of the BRCA gene.
Here are their thoughts on the Jolie effect:
"Her risks are high, she already has children, she does have the money for excellent reconstruction. However, many other women are not as fortunate. They do not have the resources to cover the test and the surgery."
"Some people are influenced by a celebrity's decision to do something. I am influenced by my professional role models in medicine."
"Based on the evidence and research on breast cancer, she made a wise choice. AND, she was right to announce her decision - the press would have eventually found out about this. It would be nice if she could use her celebrity to influence the availability of the BRCA gene test and ultimately the costs associated with the surgery, so other women can have the same options."
"Good decision. She has her children and the resources. AND, she is bringing more awareness to early detection and helping women to feel better about the surgery and their bodies."
"Health care professionals will always choose LIFE. Patients may see the vanity in things, but we are always going to save the persons life. Its nice that one of the most beautiful women in the world chose surgery, and she did it for the right reasons: she chose life."
"Brave choice, that helps you with your mental state. If you are always worried that you might get cancer, you are less ready to fight the disease. We are constantly witnessing the power of a positive mental state. If a patient's mental state is good, they do well with their treatments. If they are negative, they don't do well with their treatments. It's that simple."
"Sparking a debate and awareness of health issues is a good thing. And, everybody is different - they respond to treatments differently, they have different circumstances and these types of decisions are very personal."
"I recently met a mother who battled cancer. Her two daughters decided to have the BRCA gene test. One daughter has the gene, the other does not. The daughter with the gene is now more aware and able to monitor her health in a proactive fashion. This type of knowledge can be invaluable."