Sunday, December 30, 2007

January is Cervical Health Awareness Month

About NCCC
What is the National Cervical Cancer Coalition (NCCC) and when was it founded?

First founded in 1996, The National Cervical Cancer Coalition (NCCC) is a growing coalition of people battling cervical cancer and HPV related issues.

What is HPV?

HPV (human papillomavirus) is a virus that is common in the United States and around the world and can cause cancer and genital warts. HPV is spread through sexual contact. There are about 100 types of HPV. HPV is the major cause cervical cancer in women and is also associated with several other types of cancer in both men and women.

Some Fast Facts about Cervical Cancer:

Number of people affected by HPV: About 20 million in the United States. 80% of women by age 50 will test positive for HPV.

New cases each year: 6.2 million

Health effects: Usually causes no symptoms, but certain strains can lead to cervical cancer and/or genital warts.

Cervical cancer data in the United States: 9,700 new U.S. cases a year. 3,700 deaths.

Can HPV be treated?

There is no treatment for HPV. But there are treatments for the health problems that HPV can cause, such as genital warts, cervical cell changes, and cancers caused by HPV.

What can you do?
A vaccine, Gardasil (Approved by the FDA on June 8, 2006), which is effective against four HPV strains is available. Two of the HPV types, Type 16 and 18 cause about 70 percent of cervical cancers. Combined, all four types of HPV in the Merck Gardasil product account for about 90% of Genital warts. It is delivered in a course of the three shots.

Recommended recipients: Girls 11 and 12 years old, or before onset of sexual activity. The vaccine can be given to girls as young as 9. The vaccine is also advised for 13-to-26-year-olds.

Cost: $360 for a set of three shots over a six month period. Now being covered by vast majority of insurers.

Side effects: No serious ones reported; some pain at injection site.

How can I get the vaccine if I don’t have insurance?
The Vaccines for Children (VFC) program helps families of children who may not otherwise have access to vaccines by providing free vaccines to doctors who serve them. The VFC program provides free vaccines to children and adolescents younger than 19 years of age, who are either Medicaid-eligible, American Indian, or Alaska Native or uninsured. There are over 45,000 sites that provide VFC vaccines, including hospital, private, and public clinics. The VFC Program also allows children and adolescents to get VFC vaccines through Federally Qualified Health Centers or Rural Health Centers, if their private health insurance does not cover vaccinations. For more information about the VFC, visit the VFC web site. Some states also provide free or low-cost vaccines at public health department clinics to people without health insurance coverage for vaccines.

Source: National Cervical Cancer Coalition and the CDC.

For More Information:
National Cervical Cancer Coalition (NCCC)
6520 Platt Avenue, #693West Hills, CA 91307
(818) 909-3849
Materials available
Contact: Rachel Biety

Friday, December 28, 2007

Scientists Still Don’t Understand Alzheimer’s or How to Treat It.

Terry McDermott of the the LA Times wrote an extremely cogent article outlining the failures in both characterizing Alzheimer’s disease and discovering a cure.

The Healing Project firmly believes that the NIH, NIMH, the pharmaceutical industry, research centers, foundations and diseased-based not-for-profits must radically rethink the strategies for funding Alzheimer’s research, treatment and drug discovery. The lack of progress in dealing with the disease can be traced to cabal of leaders that dominate these organizations. Their resistance to novel approaches to curing Alzheimer’s has set back the field more than two decades due to their slavish, near religious, devotion to particular scientific theories that many have had vested interests in promoting. It is time this generation is replaced by better leaders and scientists more interested in treating the disease than burnishing their own reputations.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Healing Project Wishs to Thank Materials for the Arts

The Healing Project wishes to acknowledge the generous support of Materials for the Arts for our after-school education programs, Our Stories and Fruity Tales. It will greatly reduce spending on materials for our classes and therefore permit us to reach more students.

Materials for the Arts should be replicated around the country as unwanted goods are used to promote education while reducing the load on our environment.

Since 1978, Materials for the Arts has provided thousands of New York City's arts and cultural organizations, public schools and community arts programs with the supplies they need to run and expand their programs. Materials are gathered from companies and individuals that no longer need them and redistributed to the artists and educators that do. In the process, hundreds of tons are removed from the waste stream every year and kept out of landfills, helping to sustain our environment and promote reuse and waste reduction. MFTA helps artists realize their visions, provides students with a richer educational experience and furnishes businesses and individuals with a simple and efficient way to enhance the cultural life of their city.

The success of MFTA and its programming would not be possible without the participation of material donors throughout the metropolitan area. If you are interested in donating your unwanted reusable items to MFTA please visit our Donor page or call 718.729.3001 ext. 207.

Materials for the Arts is a unit of The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Happy Holidays from The Healing Project

Everyone at the The Healing Project wishes that everyone in our community have the happiest and healthiest of Holidays.

Donations may be made online by following this link to make a donation.

If you don’t care to make an online donation, please feel free to send a donation by mail to:
The Healing Project Inc. (THP)
5 Laurel RdSouth Salem, NY 10590
EIN: 20-4345105
E-mail: -

THP is 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit organization; all donations are tax-deductible.

If your employer has a giving program, please be kind enough to apply for a matching donation.

Finally, if your company wishes to donate, please have its giving officer contact Melissa Marr, to discuss sponsorship.

Thank you so much for your generous support

May you also have a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

The Hour Children Class Celebrates the Printing of The Golden Ruby Plums

The Healing Project believes that by understanding, identifying and providing opportunities to support, develop and teach healthy nutritional habits, it will help struggling neighborhoods realize better, sustainable results for disconnected and disadvantaged children and their families.

In March 2007, The Healing Project launched a series of after-school classes for children. Led by teacher, Adele V. Lonas, each of the classes combines geography, language, literature and art while introducing nutritional concepts relevant to the projects at hand. Each of the classes is taught in both English and Spanish.

Early childhood education is the key to shaping behaviors and instilling good habits and by offering extracurricular classes free of charge, The Healing Project hopes to encourage and sustain the healthy lifestyles of the children living in New York City. Eventually, The Healing Project plans to expand this extracurricular program nationally.

The Our Stories program was introduced at Hour Children in July 2007. Hour Children, located in Long Island City, New York, is an organization that works with women who are or were formerly incarcerated in New York prisons. Hour Children provides care and services for children while providing a safe home environment for mothers and their children in each of its five residences.

The Golden Ruby Plums is the result of a summer devoted to exploring folklore, learning about language and the art of storytelling using words and illustrations, and understanding nutrition by identifying the ways in which nutritional concepts are used in stories.

Adele Lonas leading the Our Stories Class

Adele Lonas distributing freshly printed copies of Golden Ruby Plums to the authors and artists.

Tara (on the left) and Natalee, and behind Natalee are (from left to right) Jesenia, Krystal and Casey examining the product of their effort.

Tara and Natalie proudly sharing their hard work.

Marie displaying the illustration she personally created.

Krystal displaying the illustration she personally created.

Photos Courtesy of Betty Pamais

The children were overjoyed to see their works of arts and their words displayed in a book. It is difficult to relate the profound impact this program has on these young authors and artists, but their expressions betray an reinforced sense of personal worth by actively participating in the creation of their own stories.

The printing of the books would not have been possible without the support of Jennifer Fox and Roberta Comrie. We are also indebted to Ann W. Marr, PhD, The Head of the Lower School of Convent of Sacred Heart, Greenwich, CT; and Phil Yee co-founder and Technical Director of PanMedix. Ann and Phil were kind enough to volunteer and assist the children in producing their first two books The Golden Ruby Plums and The Special Box.

In a few weeks, we will be posting photos of the second Hour Children Class receiving copies of their book, The Special Box.

THP is gratified to have benefited from the sponsorship and support of such a distinguished group of donors, volunteers and professionals.

Finally, none of the children’s programs would be possible without the dynamic leadership and dedication of program manager, Adele Lonas.

Due to the success of the programs, demand far outstrips our capacity. If you would like to sponsor a class and join our team, contact Melissa Marr at The Healing Project. Also, one can make donations online to The Healing Project through a Network for Good.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Time to Get a Flu Shoot

November 26th through December 2nd was National Influenza Vaccination Week.

If you already haven't gotten your flu shot, please do. Those over 65 and the very young are highly susceptible to the Flu. Supplies are ample so one has no excuse. Please contact your health provider to set up an appointment.

National Influenza Vaccination Week
National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Road NE, MS E-05Atlanta, GA 30333
(800) 232-4636 English/Spanish(888) 232-3299

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

December 1st is World AIDS Day

AIDS is one of the leading causes of death throughout the world, this scurge on humanity will only be contained and cured with the concerted efforts of medical researchers around the world.

For more information:
Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS

Friday, November 23, 2007

Iraq and Afghanistan War Casualties 66% Higher than Previously Reported.

The Healing Project has observed the poor treatment of our wounded warriors since our inception. Greg Zoroya in USA Today reports 20,000 Vets' Brain Injuries Not Listed in Pentagon Tally. In our view, this casualty count is the tip of the iceberg. So-called soft injuries including combat-traumatic brain injuries, PTSD, Depression, Suicide and Severe-Mental Illness have been ignored since the beginning of these conflicts.

While much attention has been focused on the gallant and extraordinary efforts of our field surgeons, medivac teams and medics that have driven survival rates to unprecedented levels; little attention has been paid to the bulk of the injuries in these conflicts. These injuries and illnesses are real. The research community has been perplexed for years (2003 forward) at the lack of preparation to deal with these ailments.

It is time to call on your Senators and Representatives and demand an explanation of how these injuries went undiagnosed and untreated for five years. If your Representative serves on the House Armed Services Committee or House Veterans Affairs Committee or your Senator serves on the Senate Armed Services or Veterans Affairs Committee, it is especially important to make your voice heard. These committees drive the legislation and control the budgets for the Department of Defense and the Veterans the Department of Veterans Affairs. It is time for accountability. $600MM was set aside in the June Supplemental Budget for the screening and treatment of PTSD and TBI. It would be useful to know how this money was spent, who spent it, and what are the results? If it has not been spent, why has it not been spent? It is no longer sufficient to believe that an increase in funding will result in any benefit of our warriors. The same people who understated the number of casualties are still in charge of the programs and there budgets intended to screen and treat the wounded; this is rewarding delay and inaction. This is not tolerable.

The Healing Project advocates the immediate mobilization of the civilian healthcare sector to relieve the backlog of wounded veterans. Our research hospitals and teaching hospitals have the diverse range of facilities and personnel to quickly triage and treat the bulk of these cases. Further, the latest systems and technologies should be employed to rapidly screen and identify these injuries. Finally, a request for volunteers (paid) should be publicly made to individual practitioners with appropriate training across the country, especially in mental health, to relieve the stress of the military and veterans medical system. Many, if not most, civilian medical personnel, are more than willing to serve their country and help those who have sacrificed so much on our behalf.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving from The Healing Project

The Healing Project wishes that everyone in our US community has wonderful holiday.

Given this is a celebration on America's bounty, please take a moment to reflect on those that are less fortunate and make a donation to extend our reach to those that have unmet medical needs.

Again have a happy, healthy and enjoyable holiday.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Healing Project Wishes to Thank All the Participants in Making the Autumn Children's Programs a Sucess

The Healing Project's Autumn Children’s Programs were made possible through the generous sponsorship of Ms. Jennifer Fox and Ms. Roberta Comrie. Ms. Fox, pictured left, is Managing Director, Healthcare Investment Banking for Deutsche Bank, and Ms. Comrie is private investor and fine artist residing in Leesburg, Virginia. Both women are native New Yorkers who have long histories of supporting charities that enhance the health, education and well-being of children. Jennifer currently sits on the Board of Directors of The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation; and Roberta is the past President and Member of the Board of Directors of the Loudoun Academy of the Arts Foundation.

THP would also like to acknowledge the support of Edward M. Stroz, founder and co-President of Stroz Friedberg LLC, for providing the tutoring material.

We are also indebted to Ann W. Marr, PhD, The Head of the Lower School of Convent of Sacred Heart, Greenwich, CT; and Phil Yee co-founder and Technical Director of PanMedix. Ann and Phil were kind enough to volunteer and assist the children in producing their first two books The Golden Ruby Plums and The Special Box.

THP is gratified to have benefited from the sponsorship and support of such a distinguished group of donors, volunteers and professionals.

Finally, none of the children’s programs would be possible without the dynamic leadership and dedication of program manager, Adele Lonas (Adele pictured with, Ana, one of her students).
Photo by Betty Pamais
Due to the success of the programs, demand far outstrips our capacity. If you would like to sponsor a class and join our team, contact Melissa Marr at The Healing Project. Also, one can make donations online to The Healing Project through a Network for Good.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

November 15th is the Great American Smokeout

It is time to pack it in. The American Cancer Society's Great American Smoke Out is an event to help you kick the habit.

The damage done by smoking is well-established. Stopping smoking is great step to improving one's health and extending one's life span.

Accept the Great American Smokeout Challenge

Quitting smoking is not easy, but it can be done. To have the best chance of quitting successfully, you need to know what you're up against, what your options are, and where to go for help.

For more information:
Great American Smokeout
American Cancer Society
1599 Clifton Road NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
(800) ACS-2345

Monday, November 12, 2007

National Hospice/Palliative Care Month

The Healing Project wants to alert its community that November is National Hospice/Palliative Care Month. Hospices and Palliative Care are often the most humane means of caring for a loved one at the end-of-life.

The theme for National Hospice/Palliative Care Month 2007, It Must Be Love, reminds us that hospice and palliative care is about more than traditional healthcare. It's hope and more -- it's providing solutions for difficult times when hope is in question, it's being close in a time of fear, it's a friend with time to share, it's laughter in the midst of tears, it's dignity, it's humanity, it's what we do. It must be love.

National Hospice/Palliative Care Month is a special time of awareness and outreach when hospices across the country reach out to raise awareness about important care issues for people coping with life-limiting illness.

National Hospice/Palliative Care Month
National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
1700 Diagonal Road, Suite 625
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 837-1500 or (703) 837-3139
(703) 837-1233 Fax

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Monday is Veterans Day Please Show Your Support for those who have Sacrificed so much on our Nation’s Behalf.

The Healing Project hopes that everyone in our community demonstrates their support for those who defend or defended our nation. If one spends time with active duty service members or veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars; you will find intelligent, patriotic men and women of integrity who have served for years in far off lands. In return, these men and women have returned to substandard medical care, denial of benefits and a lack of employment opportunities. Whether you are for or against these wars, one must be for the warrior.

It is time to send a message to both the President and Congress and let them know that our veterans are not political pawns and should be treated in a manner consistent with their service. The Veterans Administration budget should be passed immediately with the full funding recommended by Congress. The Congress should stop tying non-related domestic spending to the VA’s budget.

Finally, reach out to the veterans of these wars. As Bob Woodruff, the ABC News Anchor wounded in Iraq, recently stated, “When he was a boy in Michigan, hr remembers people in his neighborhood were going off to Vietnam and returning from it. Many people today know no one who is going to war or who has returned from it.” These are wonderful young men and women. If you meet those who have served, especially those who have been wounded, you will be pleased to see them present themselves with a grace, elan' and honor that defines the best of what America can be. Many of these vets have been terribly damaged physically and mentally, but they stand steady, don't complain and ask for nothing. It is time not only deliver what is promised to them but also give them what they deserve. If you’re a citizen, remember to say thank you, call your congressional representative and show your support at local Veterans Day event. If you are an employer, give these men and women and opportunity. As Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq Veteran and Director of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs, is found of saying, “these are people who have guaranteed their work with their lives. They will not disappoint you."

November is American Diabetes Month

Diabetes afflicts as many as 20 million Americans. The Healing Project wants everyone in our community to recognize this disease is pushing a failing health care system over the edge.

For information about Diabetes and its related co-morbidities:

American Diabetes Association
1701 North Beauregard Street
Alexandria, VA 22311
(800) DIABETES (342-2383)

Diabetic Eye Disease Month
Prevent Blindness America
211 West Wacker Drive, Suite 1700
Chicago, IL 60606
(800) 331-2020
(847) 843-8458 Fax

Foot Health Issues Related to Diabetes Awareness Month
American Podiatric Medical Association
9312 Old Georgetown Road
Bethesda, MD 20814
(301) 581-9227
(301) 530-2752 Fax

Monday, November 5, 2007

November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month

The Healing Project wants to alert its community that November is National Pancreatic Cancer Month.

While we have made tremendous progress on many cancers, there is still much that needs to be done, particularly with regard to pancreatic cancer. While overall cancer death rates are decreasing, pancreatic cancer remains a leading killer. Currently, only 5% of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this year will reach the 5 year survival mark. PanCAN is dedicated to changing those statistics.

As with every chronic disease, we strongly emphasize that anyone who is capable of participating in a clinical trial do so. It is the only way to conquer this terrible disease. Please visit to view currently recruiting trials.

Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month
Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
2141 Rosecrans Avenue, Suite 7000
El Segundo, CA 90245
(877) 272-6226
(310) 725-0025
(310) 725-0029 Fax

Materials available

November is National Family Caregivers Month

The Healing Project wishes to celebrate the heroic efforts of the Caregivers in our community. November is National Caregivers Month.

Every November the President of the United States proclaims November to be National Family Caregivers Month (NFC Month). It is designated as a time every year to thank, support, educate and celebrate more than 50 million family caregivers across the country currently providing an estimated $306 billion in "free" caregiving services. Speak Up For Your Rights

This year NFC Month will focus on family caregivers speaking up for their rights. This is an opportunity to advocate for stronger public policy addressing family caregiving issues and raise awareness about community programs supporting family caregivers.

For more information about National Caregivers Month contact:

National Family Caregivers Month
National Family Caregivers Association
10400 Connecticut Avenue, Suite 500
Kensington, MD 20895-3944
(800) 896-3650
(301) 942-6430
(301) 942-2302 Fax

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month

The Healing Project wants to reach out to the lung cancer community during Lung Cancer Awareness Month. One of our first publication’s, was Voices of Lung Cancer, an anthology of stories of patients, caregivers and family members. It may be purchased at Amazon. This is a community that must come into the light as it is one of the three leading causes of death in America.

The Healing Project also offers a free publication, Lung Cancer: What the Patient and Family Need to Know by Reed Phillips, MD. This patient guide includes information about talking with your doctor, choosing the right doctor, choosing the right surgeon and getting a second opinion.

Lung Cancer Awareness Month Public Service Announcement

Lung Cancer Awareness Month (LCAM) is a national campaign dedicated to increasing attention to lung cancer issues. By organizing rallies, distributing educational material, holding fund-raising events, contacting Congress, and speaking to the media, those involved in LCAM bring much-needed support and attention to a disease that each year kills more people than breast, prostate, colon and pancreas cancers combined.

Regrettably, the view that lung cancer is a self-afflicted condition, and therefore should receive minimal funding is unenlightened. One could extend this same argument to numerous other conditions including but not limited to cervical cancer, HIV/AIDS, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injury and Type II Diabetes. If we only accounted for people who never smoked, 20,000 to 25,000 people who be diagnosed with lung cancer and would still represent one of the 10 largest causes of death in US. It is time to be enlightened and find a cure.

A Couple of Facts from Lungevity (LUNGevity is the premier grant-making nonprofit organization funding lung cancer research and providing support to the lung cancer community):
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.

Approximately 50% of the people diagnosed with lung cancer have never smoked or are former smokers.

Lung cancer accounts for approximately 29% of all cancer deaths.

Lung cancer kills more Americans each year than breast, prostate, colorectal, and pancreatic cancers combined.

Lung cancer kills more than three times as many men each year than prostate cancer.

Lung cancer kills more women each year than breast, ovarian, uterine, and cervical cancers combined.

In 2007, an estimated 213,380 people will be newly diagnosed with lung cancer, and an estimated 160,390 people will die of lung cancer. An estimated 89,510 of these deaths will be men and an estimated 70,880 will be women.

Lung cancer kills 84% of newly diagnosed patients within five years. The survival rate is 49% for cases detected when the disease is localized to the lung, but only 16% of lung cancers are diagnosed that early.

More than 7% of American men and women will be diagnosed with lung cancer in the course of their lifetime.

The 5-year survival rate for…
Breast cancer has reached 88%
Prostate cancer – 99%
Colon cancer – 63%
Lung Cancer – 15%!

In 2007, approximately $1,633 will be spent on research per lung cancer death, compared with:
$13,471 per breast cancer death
$11,298 per prostate cancer death
$4,774 per colorectal cancer death
Lung Cancer has the lowest survival rate of any other cancer but continues to receive the least amount of funding per death!

In fact, Joan’s Legacy, one of our sister 501 (c)’s The Joan Scarangello Foundation to Conquer Lung Cancer is committed to fight lung cancer by funding innovative research and increasing awareness of the world’s leading cancer killer, with a special focus on non-smoking-related lung cancer.

Can Research Make a Difference?

Certainly, one only has to remember the enormous progress made in Breast Cancer in the last two decades to realize that a deadly killer can evolve into a chronic condition.

We ask all those afflicted to visit and participate in both diagnostic and therapeutic trials. It is the only way to find a cure.

For more information about Lung Cancer Awareness Month contact:
Lung Cancer Alliance
888 16th Street NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20006
(800) 298-2436 Lung Cancer Hotline
(202) 463-2080
(202) 355-1396 Fax
Materials available
Contact: Kay Cofrancesco

Monday, October 29, 2007

November is Alzheimer's Awareness Month

The Healing Project wishes to take this opportunity to cast a light across the entire spectrum of dementia. Alzheimer’s is a term often used as a catch-all for a group of symptoms characterized by a loss of memory judgment, language, motor skills, and impairment of other cognitive skills due to the damage or death of neurons. Alzheimer’s is large subset of dementia, but Alzheimer’s patients often present with more than one dementia. Complicating matters, many Alzheimer’s patients also exhibit depression, severe mental illness and other psychiatric conditions.

Diagnosis and Misdiagnosis
In the hands of a skilled clinical team, the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s can approach 85% in accuracy. Community-based screening techniques being pioneered by Rhonna Shatz, MD of the Henry Ford Health System offer the best model not only for correctly identifying patients’ disorders but also offering families the best continuity of care for those afflicted with dementia. It combines the latest technologies, medical instruments and clinical methods to render an accurate diagnosis and treatment.

It is essential that patients’ presenting with severe memory impairment are carefully and professionally screened for nutritional deficiencies (B1, B12, Folate), metabolic disorders (thyroid,etc.) depression, psychiatric illness, negative drug synergies (pharmaceutical dementia) before any formal diagnosis is made. All of the above conditions can be treated and the cognitive decline in many cases reversed. If none of the above conditions are present, a baseline genetic and medical history should be compiled to determine the probable type of dementia the patient might have. A panel should be assembled review the patient's case history that should include a cardiologist, neurologist, neuropsychologist, gerontologist and a psychiatrist. After the determination is made, the gerontologist or neurologist should design a course of care for the patient and the family should be counseled on caregiving practices and social services that may ease the transition as the ailment progresses.

Regrettably, the training of general practitioners has been lacking and many still use such flawed instruments such as Mini-Mental Status Exam (MMSE) to make a diagnosis. At the early stages of the dementia, the MMSE is a useless instrument and at late stages it is not very relevant as a child could identify the impairment. Newer, more powerful, cognitive screening instruments, such as the Headminder Cognitive Screening Tool (CST), are available but low reimbursement rates make its use limited only to the most advanced medical centers. Since no cure is available for Alzheimer's or any organic form of dementia and the available treatments are of limited value, little emphasis is placed on the screening and diagnosis of dementia in family practice.

Why Is Early Diagnosis Important?

Early diagnosis is important for two reasons:

1. Identifying patients early allows families to develop the resources and build the a support system necessary to comfort the afflicted; and
2. Identifying patients early offers the opportunity to participate in clinical research trials essential to the development of new courses of treatment for dementia.

For information about ongoing clinical trials visit The Healing Project can not emphasize enough that every available patient should volunteer for these trials as it is the only hope of finding useful drugs.

Current Drugs

The leading drugs available are the cholinesterase inhibitors such as Aricept and for later stage cases Namenda. Neither Aricept nor Namenda reverse the course of Alzheimer’s disease and have limited efficacy in treating the symptoms of Alzheimer's. Neither drug alters the progression of the disease.

Future Development

More than 60 drugs are in clinic, but it is highly unlikely any compound will make it to approval. It is not that some of these compounds lack efficacy, it is manner in which they are screened and tested. The FDA and EMEA (Europe’s FDA equivalent), must re-examine how the drugs are tested to ensure those that do work are properly identified. The second issue is Alzheimer's research has been largely focused on a single theory for more than 20 years. The theory may simply be targeting a symptom as opposed to the cause or causes of Alzheimer’s. Precious time has been lost and a vast amount of resources misallocated. Clinical experience and post-mortem analysis argues that the etiology of the disease and its complex co-morbidities demand a radical rethinking of the conduct of Alzheimer’s research. The Alzheimer’s patient community must demand that both the NIH and Alzheimer’s research community begin to fund alternate theories of the disease process.

What can be done now?

If a loved one is exhibiting symptoms associated with dementia, it is incumbent on the family to seek the best diagnostic center available in their area. In the event the patient is diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s, families should take full advantage of all the services available to help care for the afflicted. Proper nutrition, exercise and human interaction can have positive results in mitigating the speed of cognitive decline in most patients.

The Healing Project has published Voices of Alzheimer’s to offer perspective patients, caregivers, and families dealing with Alzheimer’s. It is available for purchase from Amazon.

Resources can be found at The Healing Project’s links section select Alzheimer’s.

For more information regarding Alzheimer’s Awareness Month’s activities:

National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month
Alzheimer's Association
225 North Michigan Avenue, 17th Floor
Chicago, IL 60601-7633
(800) 272-3900
(866) 699-1246

Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Treatment of Returned Wounded Service Members and Veterans is a Travesty

As Veterans’ Day approaches, The Healing Project wishes to call attention to the appalling level of treatment that our returning wounded service members and veterans are receiving at the hands of a government that is obligated to take care of them.

As of October 26, 2007
Official DoD Count of Troops Killed in Iraq: 3,830
Troops Killed in Afghanistan: 445
Wounded in Action: 30,035

The US Military is composed of on all volunteer force that is stationed on remote federal reservations across the country. Less than 1 ½% of the US population is affected by military deployments. These patriots are subjected to poor pay, long deployments and a general lack of support. It is time we stand up for the people willing to serve this country.

The sacrifices made by these men and women are best articulated by Ben Stein.

First, The Healing Project wishes to extend its support and recognize the extraordinary effort made by forward field medical teams deployed by the US Army, US Navy and especially the US Air Force. The doctors, nurses and medics as well as the medical evacuation teams have pushed the survival rate of injured service members to a level unprecedented in military medical history. It represents the culmination of nearly 70 years research and clinical development that demonstrates when resources and will are combined with leadership and initiative the United States can deliver a level of medical treatment unparalleled anywhere in the world. A recent The Navy Times article illustrates the type of heroic efforts made by military medical personell make on behalf of the wounded.

Nonetheless, both the DoD and Veterans Administration have failed those who have returned. Both the executive branch and the legislative branches of the US government have failed to provide the material assistance, human resources and most importantly the dynamic leadership to ensure the proper treatment of the returning wounded. No less than 9 commissions were empanelled by various organs of the US government and yet nothing has been done to address the needs of those that have been wounded. A story in the Charlotte Observer highlights only some of the problems.

Let’s be clear, the reported casualty figures reflect the number of traditional physical injuries. It is not an accurate reflection of the true number of casualties suffered by our service members. Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety disorders, suicidal tendencies, substance abuse, family violence and various severe mental disorders are triggered by the conditions experienced with repeated extended combat tours thousands of miles from their families. Inexplicably, both the VA and DoD failed to prepare for the enormous number of service members requiring treatment. The experience of returning veterans of the Vietnam War coupled with reports as early as 2005 would have led any epidemiologist to predict a large increase in demand for medical services. The claim that the neither the DoD nor the VA can provide treatment due to a lack of trained personnel is nonsense. This country has more than enough trained personnel in the civilian medical sector to be pressed into service to treat these men and women immediately.

Even more incredible has been the lack of treatment afforded to service members that have suffered combat traumatic brain injury (C-TBI). C-TBI injury has been called the signature injury of the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Advances in body armor coupled with tactics and weapons employed by our adversaries led to an extraordinary number of injuries that have not been experienced in earlier conflicts. While technologies have existed since before the conflicts to screen and track these injuries, the DoD actively avoided its use. Research dollars have been allocated to projects that will neither benefit the treatment of veterans nor lead to a greater understanding of the injury.

The willful and wanton neglect of our wounded service members by the DoD borders on criminal. The attempt to paint this C-TBI as some sort of mirage is insulting both to those suffering the injury and also those who have spent years trying to characterize it and define its treatment. Pentagon research strongly argues that many service members impacted by combat traumatic brain injury in the next 20 years will develop Parkinson’s-like syndromes and dementia. Of course, much like many of the medical discharges that have been made since the beginning of Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, compensation will be denied based upon a pre-existing condition.

The DoD seems to be attempting to delay the understanding and cataloging of this injury as it did with Gulf War Syndrome to avoid the costs of disability payments. Regrettably, the service members who develop long-term neurological illnesses will be reduced to penury because bureaucrats in Washington refuse to accept the responsibility for injuries suffered defending our democracy.

It is unacceptable.

The Healing Project hopes you will take action.

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America has created a petition to address the most basic medical issues for our wounded warriors.

IAVA Petition/IAVA Action Commercial

From IAVAAction's Site:

As a recent report from the Government Accountability Office reveals, seven months have passed since the Walter Reed crisis and serious problems in veterans' care remain.

As of October 1, the veterans' budget is late. Until it is approved, the VA will be forced to ration care.

Now, it's up to the President and Congress to approve the budget. Add your name to the statement, and demand they take action.

Please sign and let your friends and Representatives know that our wounded warriors demand the best treatment that can be afforded.

Regardless of how one feels about the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, our service members and verterans deserve and demand your respect and it is time to stand with them.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Women and Lung Cancer - Free Seminar

Woman and Lung Cancer

The Gender Specific Facts

Lung Cancer is Not Just for Smokers
It is the #1 cancer killer of women

November 13th, 2007
7: OO P.M. – 9:15 P.M.

Hyatt Hotel, 2 Albany Street, New Brunswick, NJ


Jill M. Siegfried, PhD
Co-Director Cancer Program, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute

Mika Sovak, MD
Cancer Institute of New Jersey

FREE and Open to the Public
Parking on Premises ~ Door Prizes~ Refreshments

By phone 732-363-4426 or e-mail
Please provide your full name, email address and telephone nos.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Healing Project and LaChance Publishing Celebrate the Release of the Voices of Breast Cancer

The Healing Project and LaChance Publishing came together on Tuesday, October 16th at the St. Vincents Comprehensive Cancer Center to celebrate the publication of Voices of Breast Cancer .

The evening began with a cocktail reception for the authors, friends, family and supporters of The Healing Project and LaChance Publishing. More than 100 people were in attendance.

The evening's speakers were led off by Debra LaChance, the founder of The Healing Project and President of LaChance Publishing. Following Ms. LaChance, Dr. Stephanie Bernick, The Healing Project's Oncology Advisor, spoke about the cancer patient experience. Remarks were concluded by the Oncology pioneer and President of Receptor Biologix, Dr. H. Michael Shepard. Dr. Shepard was the team leader in the discovery of the ground-breaking pharmaceutical, Herceptin. He is currently developing a new generation of biologic therapies to battle various forms of cancer.

The Healing Project wishes to thank all the authors, attendees and LaChance Publishing for creating such a special evening. We would also like to thank St. Vincents Comprehensive Cancer Center for graciously hosting the event.

Voices of Breast Cancer may be purchased at Amazon.

The Healing Project is also pleased to annouce that Voices of Breast Cancer is now in its second printing.

Upcoming releases include Voices of Alcoholism and Voices of Autism. 100% of the profits will be donated to The Healing Project.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

October 19th is National Mammography Day

The Healing Project wants every women over 40 years old to have an annual mammography. Earlier diagnosis is the key to successful treatment and a long life.

If you think you can't afford a mammography, free and low-cost breast cancer screenings (cervical cancer as well) are available throughout the United States. To find a location near you, click here.

For more information contact:
National Mammography Day
American Cancer Society
1599 Clifton Road NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
(800) ACS-2345

Monday, October 15, 2007

October is National Dental Hygiene Month

The Healing Project wishes to remind our community that proper dental hygiene has profound implications on one's individual general health. Take care of your teeth and gums.

Sponsored annually by the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA), National Dental Hygiene Month (NDHM) is a month-long observance of the importance of proper oral hygiene. Observed in October, with a specific theme chosen by ADHA, participating communities are given the chance to recognize the contributions of dental hygienists towards community outreach efforts. The 2007 topic is a continuation of the four-year theme “A Healthy Smile Lasts a Lifetime.” The focus for this year will be on Adolescent and Teenage Oral Health.

For additional information contact:

American Dental Hygienists' Association
444 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 3400
Chicago, IL 60611-3980
(800) 243-ADHA (2342)
(312) 440-8900
(312) 467-1806 Fax

Friday, October 12, 2007

October is National Spina Bifida Awareness Month

The Healing Project wants to remind all women of child bearing to make sure they make sure to have a diet rich in Niacin. Niacin is an essential vitamin that reduces the likelihood of having child afflicted with Spina Bifida.

Spina Bifida Association of America
4590 MacArthur Boulevard NW, Suite 250
Washington, DC 20007-4226
(800) 621-3141
(202) 944-3285
(202) 944-3295 Fax

Friday, October 5, 2007

National Depression Screening Day is October 11th

National Depression Screening Day® (NDSD) began seventeen years ago as the first nationwide, community-based mental health screening program. Today it is the largest provider of mental health screening services in the country through its partnership with thousands of community-based, college and primary care screening sites. NDSD offers both in-person and online screening for four of the most common and frequently co-occurring mental disorders: depression, bipolar disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.

If you would like more information about NDSD, call 781.239.0071 or email us at

A Listing of NDSD 2006 and Year Round Screening Sites can be found by clicking here.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

The Healing Project (THP) started as a project to raise consciousness about Breast Cancer and build a community of family members, caregivers and survivors. Our founder Debra LaChance is one of the 2,4 million breast cancer survivors in the United States. Breast Cancer occupies a special place in our minds to which we give special emphasis.

First, The Healing Project wants every women over 40 years old to have an annual mammography. Earlier diagnosis is the key to successful treatment and a long life.

If you think you can't afford a mammography, free and low-cost breast cancer screenings (cervical cancer as well) are available throughout the United States. To find a location near you, click here.

Second, THP is pleased to announce our third book Voices of Breast Cancer: The Healing Companion: Stories for Courage, Comfort and Strength (Voices Of series) (Paperback). It can be purchased at Amazon by following this link.

Further, Lori Benson, Academy Award Nominated Documentarian, will be giving a screening of Dear Talula followed by a Question and Answer session at Morrisania WIC in the Bronx, New York.

Finally, Dear Talula is running throughout the month on Cinemax ReelLife. Premieres Tuesday, October 9 at 7:30pm on CINEMAX.

For more information regarding National Breast Cancer Awareness Month contact:
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month Board of Sponsors
1800 Concord Pike
Wilmington, DE 19850-5437

Monday, October 1, 2007

October is National Celiac Disease Awareness Month

For infomation and materials related to the Awareness Month, click here.

Or Contact:

Celiac Sprue Association
P.O. Box 31700
Omaha, NE 68131-0700
(877) 272-4272
(402) 643-4108 Fax

Sunday, September 30, 2007

October 1st is World Mental Health Day

Mental illness is perhaps the most common and misunderstood group of diseases that afflict the world's population. The Healing Project wishes to remind our community that most mental illnesses can be successfully treated with proper diagnosis and interventions.

This year's project is Mental Health in a Changing World: The Impact of Culture and Diversity. Materials are availble in French, English, Spanish, Russian, Japanese and Chinese.

For more information:
World Federation for Mental Health
6564 Loisdale Court, Suite 301
Springfield, VA 22150-1812
(703) 313-8680
(703) 313-8683 Fax

Saturday, September 29, 2007

September 30th is World Heart Day

Heart disease and stroke is the world's largest killer, claiming 17.5 million lives each year. That's why World Heart Day was created, to create public awareness of risk factors for heart disease and stroke and to promote preventive measures.

The theme of this year's World Heart Day is “Team Up for Healthy Hearts!” Organized by World Heart Federation members and partners, World Heart Day activities include free screenings, walks, runs, jump rope sessions, fitness events, public talks, scientific forums, exhibitions, concerts, sports tournaments and much more. Learn more about World Heart Day activities>

Friday, September 28, 2007

Dear Talula is Showing On Cinemax ReelLife in October

Dear Talula
Fourteen months after giving birth to her daughter, Talula, aspiring filmmaker Lori Benson received life altering news when her doctor called to tell her she had breast cancer. Within days of her diagnosis, Lori's friends began video taping her. The resulting film, DEAR TALULA, is an intimate portrait of a woman who met the challenges of her breast cancer diagnosis with captivating courage and candor. Premieres Tuesday, October 9 at 7:30pm on CINEMAX.

At 38, Lori Benson--an aspiring filmmaker living in downtown Manhattan--was relishing life and motherhood with her one-year-old daughter Talula. Then a single phone call changed her life forever: It was her doctor; calling after a routine check up; the diagnosis was breast cancer; and surgery was imperative.

Mixing verité footage with home videos and family photographs, this 34 minute film, is an intimate autobiographical portrait of Lori's battle with breast cancer. The film offers a glimpse of her life after she received the news - the complicated and often confusing medical choices, the doctors' visits, surgeries, chemotherapy and search for alternative therapies, as well as the support and encouragement she receives from loved ones, and tender moments shared with Talula.