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A Divine Mothers’ Day in Poland 

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Nov 01, 2019

By the Philips Foundation team

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This year, the Philips Foundation and Philips Poland joined forces with the Rak'n'Roll Foundation to raise awareness around the importance of breast cancer examination for a pregnant woman – the 'Divine USG' program.

A Divine Mothers’ Day in Poland

Through a series of impactful nationwide workshops – supported by the Philips Foundation and Philips Poland – obstetricians and gynecologists have been trained in performing ultrasound screenings. It is expected this group will deliver screenings for well over 10,000 pregnant women in Poland a year. 

Myths and lower vigilance

In Poland, the number of pregnant women diagnosed with cancer increases every year. Breast cancer, which is most common, is particularly difficult to diagnose as the symptoms associated with breast swelling of pregnant women are similar to those associated with breast cancer. 


Experts report that 75 percent of cases of breast cancer are diagnosed only after delivery, which dramatically worsens the treatment results and life expectancy.


“Each pregnant woman refers to the myths pointing out their role in the lower oncological vigilance during the pregnancy and breastfeeding time,” explains Rak’n’Roll Foundation leader Marta Ozimek-Kędzior. “Alarming symptoms such as nodules, swelling, breast skin irritations are still associated with typical pregnancy symptoms, what lulls women into security.”


What’s more, according to research, nearly a quarter of pregnant women have never had an ultrasound examination, and every third woman surveyed (36%) admits she was afraid of getting back the results. 

Divine mothers

Rak’n’Roll has been running the awareness campaign ‘Divine Mothers’ for several years. ‘Divine Mothers’ refer here to pregnant women suffering from cancer who, despite their illness, have delivered healthy babies.


Now, jointly with Philips Foundation and Philips Poland, the ‘Divine USG’ program is launched to strengthen the focus around prevention and screening and supporting doctors in gaining more experience in performing ultrasound screenings for pregnant and breastfeeding women. 


“Studies show that the doctor has a crucial role in recommending USG examinations to pregnant women as almost 60 % of them underlines that they did a USG following the doctor’s guidance”, says Reinier Schlatmann, CEO Philips CEE. “We are proud that jointly with the Philips Foundation and the Rak’n’Roll Foundation, we can support doctors’ education and take care of women's health in Poland.”


So far, five workshops have been completed in the largest Polish cities, with over 100 doctors trained. Another five workshops are still to take place, increasing the total amount of trained health professionals in this program to 200.

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