With the majority of cancer diagnoses occurring in those 65 and older, seniors must be proactive to remain in good health
More than 600,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with cancer every year, according to the National Cancer
Institute, and seniors make up more than two-thirds of these diagnoses. Though aging is a risk in itself that cannot
be prevented, there are ways this population can improve their defenses against developing cancer.
As part of its outreach efforts aimed at improving senior health in the community, South Texas Health System and
Prominence Health Plan welcomed seniors to its “Living with Cancer” seminar — the latest installment of a
monthly series dedicated to helping seniors live healthier as they age.
During the event hosted at Calvary Baptist Church, STHS Family Medicine Physician Dr. Francisco Garza Salinas
shared the most common types of cancer diagnosed in the elderly, the warning signs, and practices that can help
to prevent cancer from developing.
“As we get older and wiser, sometimes our risk of certain type of cancers increases exponentially,” STHS Physician
Dr. Garza Salinas said. “Fortunately, adjusting our lifestyles by as little as 10% and being aware of certain warning
signs of cancer is all it takes to increase our survival rate and beat cancer. If we detect it early, we can beat it
Participants also enjoyed a cooking demonstration featuring cancer-fighting foods led by STHS’ Dietary staff
members, stability exercises led by STHS outpatient rehab therapists, and heard from a cancer survivor over how
to continue to lead a vibrant, active life if diagnosed with cancer.
“It’s absolutely true — if you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything,” Veronica Galligan, Prominence
Health Plan Texas Region Community Relations Representative said. “That’s why it’s so important for us to be out
in the community educating our senior population on the importance of prioritizing their health and the common
signs of diseases to look out for. Better health starts with small changes.”
Following the program, South Texas Health System clinicians and staff conducted free health screenings including
blood pressure and blood glucose checks, conducted by STHS staff and South Texas Community college nursing
The next edition of the Senior Living Seminar Series will focus on Alzheimer’s. For more information and to register
for this free event, please contact Veronica Galligan at 956-821-9569 or [email protected]
About South Texas Health System
South Texas Health System is a multi-facility healthcare system serving patients throughout the Rio Grande Valley.
The system includes four acute care facility campuses with specialties in pediatrics, heart and vascular
services, maternity and women’s health and trauma services. Inpatient and outpatient treatment for
behavioral health needs and addictive disorders is also provided through the system’s South Texas Health System
Behavioral facility. South Texas Health System is affiliated with the South Texas Clinical Partners ACO, Prominence
Health Plan, and Cornerstone Regional Hospital. The system operates an advanced Level II Trauma Center at South
Texas Health System McAllen, the first and only freestanding children’s facility and pediatric ER at South Texas
Health System Children’s, the region’s only freestanding heart hospital and specialized cardiac ER at South Texas
Health System Heart, and six freestanding emergency rooms located in and around Weslaco, Mission, Edinburg,
McAllen and Alamo. For more information about the system and its comprehensive services, please visit
About Prominence Health Plan
Prominence Health Plan began in 1993 as a health maintenance organization (HMO) and became of a subsidiary of
Universal Health Services, Inc. (UHS) in 2014. Prominence Heath Plan provides coverage to more than 60,000 fully
insured, self-funded and Medicare Advantage members throughout Nevada and parts of Texas. Prominence
operates seven Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) in California, Florida, Nevada, South Carolina, Texas and
Washington D.C., which are managed care systems that benefit communities by providing coordinated, high-
quality care to Medicare patients. For more information about Prominence Health Plan, visit
ProminenceHealthPlan.com or ProminenceMedicare.com.