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Assess Your Risk, Community

This International Women’s Day, We #PressforProgress in Women’s Health

Since the early 1900’s, women across the globe have come together on one day a year to celebrate sisterhood and rally behind driving progress for women’s rights and wellbeing. This day, globally recognized as International Women’s Day, is close to Bright Pink’s heart for many reasons. In 2018, we are focused on one reason in particular: The power and spirit of community.

At Bright Pink, we know and believe in the power of the collective effort–we see it in our office, in our daily work, and in the communities we work with. We’re committed to #PressforProgress in women’s health all month long, in honor of both International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month. How? By encouraging women across the nation to #SelfCareandShare and join a growing community of female health heroes who are prioritizing breast and ovarian health. This is what progress looks like, in action:

  1. See health care as a form of self-care by assessing your risk for breast and ovarian cancer using our tool Assess Your Risk™
  2. Share Assess Your Risk™ with 8 women you love to create a sentiment of sisterhood and extend the knowledge that 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

Not only is it important to continue to #PressforProgress in women’s health, but it’s also important to celebrate the work we have accomplished together thus far. In 2018 alone, 57,000+ women have assessed their risk for breast and ovarian cancer–contributing to a total of over 900,000+ women since Bright Pink’s inception. That is definitely something worth celebrating!

It’s an exciting time to be a woman. And together, we are stronger. Together, we can make an impact. Together, we can become proactive health advocates and encourage others to do the same.

Join in on our conversation around health care as self-care all month long by following Bright Pink on social media and using the hashtag #SelfCareandShare 

Assess Your Risk, Community, We Love

Every Wednesday this March, Bright Pink is ‘Crushing’ on a Different Fearless Female

Each Wednesday throughout March, in honor of Women’s History Month, Bright Pink will be highlighting a different woman who has made incredible strides for women’s health and wellbeing. #WomenCrushWednesdays are intended to elevate heroic stories of women’s health advocates with the goal of inspiring and motivating that same heroism in you!

Wednesday, March 7th

This week’s crush: Mary Claire King, Ph.D.

“At a time when most scientists believed that cancer was caused by viruses, she relentlessly pursued her hunch that certain cancers were linked to inherited genetic mutations. This self-described ‘stubborn’ scientist kept going until she proved herself right.” – Former President Barack Obama, upon awarding King with the National Medal of Science

How she’s a hero: Mary Claire King is recognized as a pioneer in the field of genetics. In 1990, after years of research and motivated by the passing of a childhood friend, she made a revolutionary link between genetics and cancer through her discovery of the BRCA1 gene–or chromosome 17–that we now consider a main identifier of breast and ovarian cancer. Her discovery came at a time when many scientists believed that cancer was viral and that genes played no role in cancer diagnosis. Her discovery of the BRCA1 gene was revolutionary in not only identifying breast and ovarian cancer, but in diagnosing and treating these cancers as well.

We are also crushing on Mary Claire King because apart from being an amazing researcher and geneticist, she is also an advocate for women’s health and was awarded the National Medal of Science for her commitment to applying her skills in the service of others around the world.

Mary Claire King currently serves as an advisor to Color, a health service that helps individuals understand their genetic risk for hereditary cancers, and is a faculty member at the University of Washington.


Wednesday, March 14th

Jane C. Wright WCWThis week’s crush: Jane C. Wright

“She recognized the value of placing patients on clinical trials. It was not exactly accepted by the medical public…She looked at it as an opportunity to open the gates to new possibilities in treatment of cancer. In that way she was a trailblazer.” – Dr. Robert E. Madden, Professor Emeritus of Surgery at New York Medical College

How she’s a hero: Jane C. Wright is an acclaimed oncologist and cancer researcher from U.S. history who changed how we approach chemotherapy today. Following in the footsteps of her father (who was also a doctor), Jane challenged the status quo when it came to chemotherapy and pushed the medical field to consider chemo as a viable option for cancer patients, as opposed to a last resort strategy. She was also the first doctor to use clinical trials to make cancer treatment more effective.

We also consider Jane C. Wright a hero for her contributions beyond the medical field. Jane was tenacious and fearless when it came to breaking down gender and racial barriers. Not only was she the founder of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, but she was also the first woman elected president of the New York Cancer Society AND the first black woman to hold the position of associate dean at New York Medical College–all at a time when the medical field was dominated by white men.

Jane C. Wright died at the age of 93 in 2013 at her home in New Jersey.


Wednesday, March 21st

This week’s crush: Angelina Jolie

“It is not easy to make these decisions. But it is possible to take control and tackle head-on any health issue. You can seek advice, learn about the options and make choices that are right for you. Knowledge is power.” – Angelina Jolie

How she’s a hero: Angelina Jolie is a household name for her amazing skills on screen, her humanitarian efforts off screen, and her vocal experience with breast and ovarian cancer. In 2013, impacted by the loss of her grandmother, aunt, and mother to breast cancer, Angelina tested positive for the BRCA1 gene mutation–meaning she had an increased risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer over time. This discovery led Angelina to get both a preventive double mastectomy (surgery removing both breasts) and, later, a laparoscopic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (surgery removing ovaries and fallopian tubes).

Angelina’s decision was her own, but she did not keep her story private. Instead, she chose to give a voice to her experience and discuss her personal history with breast and ovarian cancer with the world with the hopes of making a positive impact on other women. In any of her personal storytelling about her experience (such as various op-eds she wrote for the New York Times), she always encourages women to be knowledgeable and proactive about their health, have conversations with their doctors, and be empowered to make personalized health decisions. Angelina’s openness has even been attributed to an increased number of women engaging in genetic testing and preventive surgeries. In short, Angelia Jolie made breast and ovarian cancer an open conversation, not a diagnosis to be afraid of–and for that, we give her a hero’s badge.

If you are feeling inspired by this week’s #WomenCrushWednesday, don’t stop here! Join our growing community of women who are becoming their own best breast and ovarian health advocates. Start your hero’s journey right now.  #WomensHistoryMonth #SelfCareandShare



  • Dreifus, C. (9 February 2015). A never-ending genetic quest. The New York Times. Retrieved from
  • Ramsey, L. (16 November 017). Over a 40-year career, this ‘stubborn scientist’ helped change the way we think about cancer and genetics. Business Insider. Retrieved from
  • Park, A. (2 June 2014). Lessons from the woman who discovered the BRCA cancer gene. Retrieved from
  • Weber, B. (2 March 2013). Jane Wright, oncologist, dies at 93. The New York Times. Retrieved from
  • (n .d.) About Jane Cook Wright. American Association for Cancer Research. Retrieved from
  • Massive Staff. (21 April 2017). Jane Cooke Wright saved millions by making chemotherapy more effective. Retrieved from
  • Jolie, A. (14 May 2013). My medical choice. The New York Times. Retrieved from
  • Jolie Pitt, A. (24 March 2015). Angelina Jolie Pitt: Diary of a surgery. The New York Times. Retrieved from
  • (26 September 2017). Mastectomy study confirms ‘Jolie effect’ on breast cancer prevention. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved from
Assess Your Risk, Early Detection

In Honor of Women’s History Month, #SelfCareandShare with Bright Pink

How many of you have scrolled through your social media feed or read an article and seen the term “self-care” come up again and again? It seems the term is popping up everywhere in mainstream media, sparking a national conversation about women’s wellbeing and how women can prioritize themselves in a world where we are constantly being pulled in multiple directions at once. Self-care is certainly getting buzz, and for good reason! Taking care of Y-O-U is our greatest priority. But it can be hard to think tangibly about what self-care means for you and what actions you can take to practice self-care beyond taking a bath or cooking a healthy meal.

Throughout the month of March, in honor of Women’s History Month, Bright Pink will be inspiring women to self-care by prioritizing their breast and ovarian health. As we reflect upon our rich history of fearless females who have paved the way for better women’s rights and well-being (think Mary-Claire King, the woman who discovered the BRCA gene and transformed how we identify breast and ovarian cancer), we realize that it is now on us, the women of today, to extend the dreams and actions of health heroes of the past by playing a role in shaping women’s health of the future. After all, when women prioritize their breast and ovarian health, they are better equipped to be proactive health advocates both for themselves and the women they love.

All month long, we’ll encourage women across the nation to be their own health heroes and self-care by:

  1. Assessing their risk for breast and ovarian cancer using our award-winning digital tool, Assess Your Risk™, and
  2. Sharing the quiz with 8 women in their life to empower others to take proactive steps for their breast and ovarian health.

We’ll measure our progress as a growing community of women’s health heroes with a live map that tracks who has #selfcareandshare‘d by state. The map will demonstrate the number of women throughout the U.S. who have assessed their risk and are empowered to be proactive health advocates for themselves and the women in their lives.

Join us in making history this Women’s History Month by assessing your risk and sharing self-care with 8 women you love.

1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Together, let’s transform Women’s History Month into a conversation that honors the past and enables a brighter future for women’s health. It’s up to us, and there is no time like the present to get started.

Join our conversation this month by following Bright Pink on social media and using the hashtag #SelfCareandShare.


Fueling our Mission

3 Ways to Brighten Up The Big Game

The holidays are behind us and we officially have the new year under our belts. Which means … Sunday’s Big Game is upon us! Are you rooting for the Eagles or Patriots? We took a poll in the office and are betting that the Eagles will take the win, but are looking forward to a good game regardless.

Party planning for The Big Game is a blast, but it’s also a lot of work! So, while you take the lead on the menu, let us take care of some of the party planning.

We’ve all been to the traditional Big Game parties full of hot wings and pizza bites. You eat, you chat, you root for your team, and then go home. But, as the host, you have a perfect opportunity to transform your Big Game party into something that drives positive social impact! By following some of the suggestions below, your party can do more by supporting Bright Pink and our mission to put women on a path to better breast and ovarian health (while–let’s be real–still enjoying those hot wings and pizza bites).

Here are some possible ‘Bright Bowl’ game plans:


You can set up your own Bright Bowl fundraising link here or collect on your own and make a donation here. If sending us a check, be sure to make checks payable to Bright Pink and include your name in the check memo so we can thank you!

We are super (get it?) excited to see what you come up with! Post your ‘Bright Bowl’ party pictures to social media and tag us using the #brightbowl hashtag. 

Fueling our Mission

2017 Year In Review

This year, Bright Pink…

  • celebrated our 10th Anniversary,
  • launched our first ever monthly giving program, FundHER,
  • celebrated mom by having a meaningful conversation about health history with #GoAskYourMother,
  • drove thousands of women to schedule their annual well-woman’s exam on #CallYourDoctorDay,
  • taught tens of thousands of women the symptoms of ovarian cancer and to be #OvarianSelfAware,
  • inspired thousands of women to enroll in mobile breast health reminders #LivingMyBreastLife,
  • armed women with the questions to ask their family about health history on Thanksgiving with a #ThanksgivingGamePlan,
  • and partnered with generous supporters and sponsors to make it all possible.

As the year comes to a close, join us in reflecting on all we’ve accomplished since Bright Pink was founded in 2007. To date…

Thank you for your commitment to our work, for your belief in the power of personalized prevention, and for helping shape a brighter future – one in which every woman knows her risk for breast and ovarian cancer, and takes action to manage that risk proactively.

With gratitude,
Katie Thiede, CEO
Katie Thiede, CEO

Remember, if you haven’t yet made your 2017 tax-deductible contribution to support our work, now’s the time! Visit to give today.

Assess Your Risk, Early Detection, Personal Stories

Brianna’s Story

Brianna knows first hand how important it is to be proactive with your breast and ovarian health. Watching her mother lose her 15-year battle with breast cancer inspired Brianna to be her own best health advocate. Pregnant with her first child, she vowed to understand her risk, and after her child was born, planned on taking action.

Brianna welcomed her son Declan into the world and immediately began to put her proactive plan in place. She was overwhelmed with the joy of motherhood and committed to building a healthy environment for her new family to grow. Just 7 months after Declan’s birth, Brianna underwent genetic testing and learned she was positive for a genetic mutation, giving her up to an 87% chance of developing breast cancer.

And then, while breastfeeding one day, Brianna found a lump. While the lump could have been brushed off as a clogged milk duct from breastfeeding, Brianna and her provider decided it would be best to have an ultrasound. Results showed stage 2 breast cancer, and Brianna decided to have a double mastectomy.

Brianna’s story illustrates the power of prevention and early detection. Brianna took proactive action and advocated for herself to ensure a happy, healthy future for herself and her family. Now a mother of two, Brianna is committed to empowering all women to be proactive advocates for their health through her involvement and support of Bright Pink.

Enable more women to assess their risk and detect cancer early. Make a gift to fuel our work today.

Assess Your Risk, Early Detection

Breast Density 101

Breast density has been in the news a TON lately, and for good reason. About 40% of women have dense breasts, which are more difficult to screen using traditional mammography. Read on to learn more, and be sure to ask your healthcare provider, “Do I have Dense Breasts?”.

What does it mean if I have dense breasts?

Breast density is a way to measure how much of your breast is made up of fatty tissue. Dense breasts contain less fatty tissue, making it hard to find tumors or other changes on a mammogram.

How does breast density affect my breast cancer risk?

Studies show that having dense breasts can double your risk of getting breast cancer.

Who is more likely to get dense breasts?

  • Premenopausal women
  • Women who are thin
  • Black women

Your breast density can change as you age, or as your bodyweight changes.

How do I find out if I have dense breasts?

The only way to truly know if you have dense breasts is through mammography. Some states have laws that say a radiologist/healthcare provider must inform you if you have dense breasts, and some states don’t.  Ask your healthcare provider: “Do I have dense breasts?”

What happens next?

If a radiologist determines that you have dense breasts, talk to your healthcare provider about what screening options are available to you, taking into account other risk factors like family history of breast cancer, personal health history, and lifestyle. Currently, there are no guidelines or recommendations for increased or additional screening for women with dense breasts.

What types of screening are available and when are they used?

  • 2D Mammogram: This is the most common form of mammography. Your personal and family health history will determine when you start screening.
  • 3D Mammogram: This technology is becoming more widely available and proven to be more accurate than 2D mammography.
  • Breast MRI: This can be used in addition to mammography if your provider wants a more accurate reading. This can be utilized for women at elevated risk.
  • Breast Ultrasound: This can be used to look more closely at something suspicious. It can also be helpful in addition to mammography for women with dense or fibrocystic breasts.

Awareness in Action™

We all have different breasts – different sizes and shapes with varying densities. Text BRIGHT to 59227 and reply Y, or sign up here, for Bright Pink’s Breast Health Reminders™. We’ll send you regular reminders to check in with your breasts so that you can better define what’s normal for YOUR breasts. One text message reminder has the power to save your life!



Bills Bills Bills: A synopsis of current policies affecting health care


Senate Tax Bill (passed in early December)

  • Senate tax bill passed on 12/2 would abolish enforcement of ACA requirement that most Americans have health insurance coverage or face a tax penalty (confusingly, it doesn’t abolish the requirement itself, only the enforcement of the punishment)
  • Budget analysts say that this could cause an extra 13M people to be uninsured and drive up insurance premiums

House Tax Bill (passed in November)

  • Differs on tax rates and has different tax brackets than the Senate bill. Also eliminates estate tax.
  • Does not end enforcement of ACA insurance mandate tax penalty

Both Bills

  • Both have been passed by their respective chambers, which means that Congress must now negotiate their differences
    • They are trying to create a final plan for Trump to sign before Christmas
  • Both are expected to lead to significant cuts in Medicare funding  – ~$25 billion
  • Could also eliminate $1 billion for Prevention and Public Health Fund, part of the CDC’s prevention budget
    • This is expected to lead to fewer low-income people getting breast cancer screening

Executive Order/2018 Marketplace

  • Through 2018, individuals can get comprehensive coverage through the ACA regardless of whether or not the have a preexisting condition
  • Cost-sharing subsidies that were threatened will still be available in 2018 for individuals under 250% of poverty level
    • However, the federal govt isn’t reimbursing insurers for these subsidies, so they may make up the difference by raising premiums.
  • On that note, most are expecting premiums for health insurance to be higher but not necessarily for all types of plans, so it’s recommended that people shop around
  • There is still a tax if you don’t have health insurance coverage through 2018 (2.5% of taxpayer’s income)
  • Some insurers may be selling “short-term plans” that are less expensive but may not cover essential health benefits and may exclude those with preexisting conditions

Essential Health Benefits

  • May not necessarily be covered under “short-term” health plans that people can enroll for in 2018
  • Through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Trump administration proposed a rule late Friday (10/27) that could allow states flexibility in requiring insurance companies to cover what are known as “essential” health benefits
  • The rule will officially be published Nov. 2, with a comment period lasting until Nov. 27
  • With current plans, states must select a “benchmark” plan to set the standard for how generously insurers must cover essential benefits, which include categories such as maternity care and mental-health services. If CMS goes ahead with its proposed changes, states won’t have to choose from a limited, fixed menu of benchmark plans. Instead, they can select a la carte.

Birth Control Coverage

  • Trump administration issued 2 new rules:
    • 1. Exempts any employer from providing birth control coverage because of religious objections (including higher education, NFPs, publicly traded for-profit)
    • 2. Exemption for employers other than publicly traded for-profit employers if they object based on undefined “moral” reasons
  • Right now, impossible to predict how many employers will take advantage of new exemptions
  • Many women will face out-of-pocket costs for birth control that make it difficult/impossible to use the birth control method that best fits their needs
  • Systems like Title X and Medicaid were not designed to absorb costs from patients that would normally be getting private birth control coverage
  • Other federal and state protections for birth control coverage still remain, but this can be difficult to navigate and understand
  • Hundreds of thousands of women are expected to lose coverage
  • Notre Dame is the first higher education institution to announce that they will drop birth control coverage for students, faculty and staff >>> UPDATE: Notre Dame announced that they have reversed their decision and it will still be accessible through university-sponsored plans:


Fueling our Mission

Introducing a new product collaboration, just in time for the holidays!

Alex|Tay introduces polish that gives back.

Get inspired. Get passionate. Get colorful.

We’re excited to share a brand new product on the market benefitting Bright Pink- Limited-edition Bright Pink nail polish from Alex|Tay.

The signature Bright Pink polish by Alex|Tay is now available for purchase online, with 20% of sales from each bottle sold benefitting Bright Pink.

In addition to supporting Bright Pink through your purchase of the Bright Pink color, you can also create your own custom nail color using the Alex|Tay app! Download the Alex|Tay app today and “Color Match Your World” with their custom nail color platform – you can even name each unique color. For every purchase of your own custom designed color, you’ll give back to Bright Pink, too!

An added bonus: all Alex|Tay nail formulas have been Silver Level Certified for Material Health by the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute – this ensures that the product contains no substances known or suspected to cause cancer, birth defects, genetic damage, or reproductive harm.

Snap a pictap your colorcreate your polish.

Visit to get your very own Bright Pink polish, create your own custom color, and purchase the brightest stocking stuffers on the market this holiday season!

Fueling our Mission

Give Brightly on #GivingTuesday

Giving Tuesday is a Global Giving Movement celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving and widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Bright Pink will proudly receive gifts AND send gifts (a personalized card) in honor of the women you love on Tuesday, November 28th. Read on to learn more and support us with a gift at

Instead of searching online and in crowded stores, get ahead of your holiday shopping by giving the most meaningful gift of all. Show your loved ones how much you care by making a gift in their honor to Bright Pink! To ensure a special experience, a tailored card will be delivered to their door with a personal message from you.

When you make a contribution to Bright Pink, you empower women to be their own best health advocates and you help train doctors to address breast and ovarian health early.

Be proactive this holiday season by making a #GivingTuesday gift in honor of a woman you love. You give, Bright Pink will send them a card, and you’ll both feel good knowing your gift supports women’s health! Visit to give today.


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