• Give a Gift
  • Customer Service
  • Promotions
  • Videos
  • Blogs
  • Win
  • Games

October 3, 2008

Breast Cancer: Attacking the Enemy Abroad

Breast Cancer Update

nancy brinker chief of protocol susan g komen foundation

Nancy Brinker

Photo Credit: D. Brack-Pool/Getty Images

Special Offer

Got pink ribbon fatigue? Don't tell that to Nancy Brinker, U.S. Chief of Protocol and founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure (named after her sister, who died of breast cancer). Brinker--whose day job includes hosting visiting dignitaries in the U.S. and keeping an eye on our cowboy president abroad--has a new crusade: medical diplomacy. She gives us the lowdown.

MC: You started Komen, which funds more breast-cancer research than anyone except the U.S. government. Haven't you done enough?
NB: I'm totally gratified and thrilled, but we still need to address the economic and social disparities in cure rates. I don't consider it a success when treatment still costs $50,000 to $100,000 per patient. About 70 percent of deaths now occur in undeveloped countries. We need to share our medical knowledge with them, because it's the right thing to do, and because there's no limit to the goodwill it will foster around the world.

MC: So who are you working with?
NB: We have an excellent program in Jordan. In Hungary, they wanted to revise the old communist health system, so the program is blossoming--we're changing the culture of the illness, encouraging screening, improving treatment. We're now in 50 countries, and we're training volunteers in others.

MC: What drives you, 26 years in, to keep the fight alive?
NB: I spent time raising a family, then caring for my ailing father. Now I love representing my country; it's the greatest honor of my life. I'm not a social person--I work so hard that sometimes that part of my life goes by the wayside. But I'd be miserable just thinking about me all the time.

Click here to see our list of 101 PRODUCTS THAT BENEFIT BREAST CANCER

Connect with Marie Claire:
daily giveaway
Go to the Beach

Go to the Beach

enter now
You Know You Want More
More From World News on Women
This Act Could Put an End to Anti-Abortion Legislation

Women's right to choose is constantly at stake—but this might the solution.

Yet Another Blow to Birth Control Coverage

The Supreme Court's latest decision will limit a key benefit for women.

post a comment

Special Offer
Link Your Marie Claire Account to Facebook

Marie Claire already has an account with this email address. Link your account to use Facebook to sign in to Marie Claire. To insure we protect your account, please fill in your password below.

Forgot Password?

Thanks for Joining

Your information has been saved and an account has been created for you giving you full access to everything marieclaire.com and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your username and/or password or complete your profile, click here.

Your accounts are now linked

You now have full access to everything Marie Claire and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your settings or profile, click here.