Columbus organization raising awareness of added risks mental illness can cause for cancer patients

Columbus organization raising awareness of added risks mental illness can cause for cancer patients
(Gunn, Olivia)

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - An organization in Columbus is raising awareness of the added risks that mental illness or recovering from substance abuse can cause for someone with cancer.

New Horizons is working towards similar goals with the at-risk groups as with the general population. The organization says early detection is always the goal.

"Women who suffer from mental illness don't have higher rates of cancer than the general population, but they don't have as much positive outcomes as the general population. Usually it's because the cancer is detected later. So, we wanted to give information to the ladies about early signs and symptoms---how to do your monthly breast self exams and how important that is," says Susan Galagher with New Horizons.

There is a 30 percent higher fatality rate from cancer in women living with mental illness or substance abuse disorder.

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