According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), mammograms are the best way to detect cancer early, before the disease is massive enough to feel or cause symptoms. That’s also when the disease is easiest to treat.

The CDC says that having regular mammograms can lower the risk of dying from breast cancer and recommends that women get a mammogram every two years from ages 50 to 74. It is not uncommon for younger women to get mammograms at the recommendation of their doctor if breast cancer runs in their family, or if they show any signs of symptoms.

But even though mammograms save lives, many women can’t afford to get screened because they don’t have health insurance. That’s why Boca Raton Regional Hospital (BRRH) and the West Boca Youth Baseball League are teaming up for the Third Annual Pink Ball, this Saturday, April 21 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the South County Regional Park baseball fields (1500 Yamato Road; http://www.pbcgov.com/parks/locations/south_county_regional.htm).

“Last year’s the event raised over $20,000,” said Michelle Stallone, mammography technologist and event founder. “We’re hoping to exceed those proceeds this year.”

Two teams from the Christine E. Lynn Women’s Health & Wellness Institute at BRRH will play softball amid a sea of pink to show support for breast cancer awareness. Proceeds will benefit women in need of a mammogram or breast ultrasound that lack health insurance. But the real action is happening off the field.

In addition to a bake sale, pickup softball games for men and women, a DJ, face painting, Italian ices, food,  raffles and giveaways, the BRRH Kathryn Krickstein Pressel MammoVan will be there providing FREE mammograms from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

That’s a FREE mammogram, ladies. Reservations are preferred by calling 561/955-4325, but walk-ins are welcome.

The MammoVan is completely digital and handicap accessible. It provides access to affordable mammograms for thousands of women as it drives all over Palm Beach County. The MammoVan offers the same services that are available at the Institute, including same-day mammograms and clinical breast exams. It was named after LPGA Tour golfer Morgan Pressel’s mother Kathryn, who passed away from breast cancer when Pressel was just 15. Pressel raised the funds through her charity for the MammoVan and now more than 90,000 exams are given each year.

The event is free to attend and open to the public. It is being dedicated to Maria Velasquez, MD, a radiologist at BRRH, who is a breast cancer survivor.  Grab your sunscreen on Saturday and come out for this great cause.