RefuahHealth Receives Federal Award through President Biden’s Cancer Moonshot Initiative

NEW SQUARE, New York— RefuahHealth has been awarded a $500,000 Accelerating Cancer

Screening (AxCS) Program grant through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). A

cornerstone of President Joe Biden’s Cancer Moonshot initiative launched when he was vice president in

2016, the AxCS Program aims to improve access to life-saving cancer screenings and early detection

services for underserved communities.

During the two-year program, RefuahHealth will partner with the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer

Center (HICCC) at Columbia University to train and deploy a team of culturally competent outreach

specialists and patient navigators. This grassroots team will promote early detection of cancer, connect

patients to screening services, and provide hands-on assistance with accessing high quality cancer care

and treatment to underserved communities across New York’s Lower Hudson Valley. To increase access

to low income, insular and/or geographically isolated individuals, RefuahHealth will offer colorectal,

cervical, and breast cancer screening services via a mobile cancer screening clinic. With AxCS funding,

RefuahHealth aims to provide cancer screenings to over 14,300 individuals in 2023.

“An estimated 9.5 million cancer screenings were missed during the pandemic,” Alexandra Khorover,

RefuahHealth’s Chief Strategy Officer said. “This award will help close the cancer screening gap and

decrease the impact of preventable cancers.”

During early 2023, AxCS awards went out to 22 community health centers across the nation as President

Biden reignited the Cancer Moonshot program with new national goals to cut the death rate from cancer

by at least 50% over the next 25 years and improve the experience of people and their families living with

and surviving cancer.

Cancer remains the second-leading cause of death in the United States, with approximately 600,000

deaths annually. According to data from the New York State Cancer Registry, in Rockland County nearly

1,800 individuals are diagnosed with an invasive malignant tumor with over 430 deaths annually. Breast

and colorectal cancers rank among the highest in malignancy and death. While appropriate screening and

timely follow-up care help to detect and prevent cancer, many families living in underserved communities

continue to face challenges in getting life-saving cancer screenings and treatment.

“Community health centers are designed to breakdown access issues like income, insurance status, race,

and ethnicity. We’re the perfect candidate for connecting communities with screening services. Our

program will not only make it easier to get screened but to also get connected to any needed follow-up

care,” said Dr. Corinna Manini, RefuahHealth’s Chief Medical Officer.

RefuahHealth, a community cornerstone for over 30 years, provides comprehensive medical, dental, and

mental health care, including select medical specialties, to residents across Rockland and Sullivan

counties in New York’s lower Hudson Valley. Per the US Department of Health and Human Services,

RefuahHealth is a 501(c)3 Federally Qualified Community Health Center.