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Topic: Anyone Else Get Calls From "The Breast Cancer Society?"

Forum: Moving Beyond Cancer — Getting on with the rest of your life, from rediscovering intimacy to coping with hot flashes.

Posted on: Aug 24, 2013 02:35AM

Kim14 wrote:

I am a 5-year survivor of Stage 2 invasive breast cancer. It was one of the worst things I've ever been through in my life, so I really do like to just forget about the whole ordeal.

However, I have recently received a few phone calls from a place calling itself "The Breast Cancer Society". The woman on the phone says, "We help a woman with breast cancer", but doesn't say HOW they help her. When I tried to ask questions, she vaguely claimed they gave financial and other assistance, which appears to be untrue. (Just Google 'Arizona Breast Cancer Society" and you'll see that they have a horrible track record as a "charity").

I recently saw a CNN report about the Arizona-based "Breast Cancer Society". CNN warned that the so-called "charity" is nothing but a scam. I went through Hell with breast cancer and nobody helped me with my astronomical medical bills. Even worse, The Breast Cancer Society is run by a family who also has "charities" for pediatric cancer, a general cancer fund, etc. All of these alleged "charities" have received an "F" grade from charity watchdog groups.

Anderson Cooper on CNN said they are shameless scammers who didn't want to answer the CNN reporter's questions. It really makes me mad that scammers are trying to line their own pockets by claiming to help "a woman with breast cancer", when this is NOT the case. The "charity" spokesperson couldn't even answer basic questions about where the donations go or what the money is used for.

Worst of all, they seem to be preying on women who have a history of breast cancer. (They probably assume we will be more sympathetic to their cause then the average person). Many breast cancer patients and survivors have reported very aggressive marketing calls from this organization. I've never before received a telemarketing call for any other kind of cancer or disease. I get letters from organizations fighting cancer and other diseases, but NEVER phone calls.

What I don't understand is how on Earth did they get my phone number? Or find out that I am a breast cancer survivor? I have an unlisted phone number and am on the national "Do Not Call" list. Somehow they must be getting access to our medical records, which I believe is a violation of the HIPPA privacy laws. I have no idea how they did this, other than perhaps hacking into hospital or health insurance records.

I wondered if anyone else has received calls from this organization? If so, how did you handle it? I know NOT to give them money in a million years, but I'm not quite sure how to get the phone calls to STOP. I've received several calls, told them I wasn't interested, but the calls continue. The worst part is that it is a VERY unpleasant reminder of an incredibly chaotic time in my life. I just want to put it behind me and NOT be reminded of it. Thanks for any advice.

May God bless all who must fight this disease.


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Aug 24, 2013 09:53AM, edited Aug 24, 2013 09:59AM by leggo

Hi Kim. I'm in Canada and we get phone calls on a weekly basis for every disease under the sun, but not cancer. For the most part, the calls are legit. Having said that, a call from a cancer society is not, just like you said. At least here anyway. All fund raising is done through the private sector. I wouldn't assume though, that the scammers got your number BECAUSE you had cancer. Phone numbers are bought and sold between companies all the time for solicitation purposes. For example, something as benign as a store purchase can give access to your phone number. Not too much that can be done about it, other than blocking the number so they can't call back.

Dx IDC, 3cm, Stage IV, Grade 3, 26/35 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Aug 24, 2013 07:13PM Soccermom4force wrote:

I got a call from them too. I told them I was going to report them to the FCC, which I did. I am on the DO NOT CALL LIST as well.



" I expect to pass through life but once. If therefore,there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow human being, let me do it now, as I shall not pass this way again."

Dx 12/2/2004, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIb, Grade 3, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Aug 25, 2013 09:52PM hbcheryl wrote:

I got a call too but I turned the tables and when she asked could she send an envelope and they would be pleased with any donation I told her "oh I thought you were going to send me money" she started blubbering and I just hung up but I have caller ID and they called me 3 times last week and I too am on the Do Not Call list

Dx 7/25/2008, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIa, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-