American Cancer Society Hope Lodges Make Traveling Easier


Hope Lodges pic
Hope Lodges

For more than three decades, Ellen Scharaga has been a leader in the pharmacy industry. Having held such positions as director of pharmacy, pharmacy supervisor, and general manager, she currently serves Alegria Specialty Pharmacy as an operational consultant. Dedicated to helping others, Ellen Scharaga supports several charitable organizations, including the American Cancer Society.

As part of its mission to end cancer around the world, the American Cancer Society maintains numerous programs and services that help cancer patients and caregivers ease some of their burdens during their battle against cancer.

One such service, the Hope Lodge program, provides patients and their caregivers with a free place to stay while they receive treatment away from home. Hope Lodge was created to alleviate the expense and stress of traveling to obtain treatment, which oftentimes prevents individuals from getting the help they need. Hope Lodge helps patients focus on getting better rather than worrying about paying for lodging.

There are currently more than 30 Hope Lodge locations throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. Although each location varies in terms of eligibility requirements, they all provide guests with a home-like environment and offer various resources related to cancer treatment. Hope Lodges also give guests the option to connect with other patients or to maintain their privacy.


American Cancer Society Updates Guidelines for Mammography Screenings

American Cancer Society pic
American Cancer Society

An accomplished pharmacologist, Ellen Scharaga of Melville, NY, currently works for Alegria Specialty Pharmacy as an operational consultant. Interested in supporting cures for chronic and life-threatening diseases, Ellen Scharaga is a supporter of the American Cancer Society.

After studying recent medical evidence, the American Cancer Society has updated its guidelines for mammogram screenings. The new recommendations for preventive breast cancer screenings may come as a surprise to some. The Cancer Society now says that women can start having mammograms later in life, and they can be done less frequently than has been the norm.

The new guidelines, based on the findings of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, say that regular screenings for women of average risk in the 40-49 age group carry more risks than benefits. In addition, it is now recommended that women aged 50 to 74 have mammograms only every other year, rather than each year. The reasoning behind the changes is the high rate of false positives. Women of low risk who are screened annually have almost a two-in-three chance of receiving at least one false positive, which increases health care costs and causes patients unnecessary stress.

Unexpected Benefits of Participating in Volunteer Work

Volunteering pic

Based in Melville, NY, Ellen Scharaga is a pharmacy professional with 25 years of experience. A supporter of the American Cancer Society as well as the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Ellen Scharaga values charitable work and spends time outside of her professional life engaging in volunteer services. Volunteerism not only provides charitable organizations and nonprofits with the extra help needed to reach disadvantaged groups, but also can provide volunteers with several personal benefits.

Beginning with the physical benefits, volunteering can remove you from an old routine, getting you out of your home and moving around. Many volunteer opportunities involve cleaning outdoor spaces or packaging items such as food or medical supplies. The physical exercise coupled with the social connections that you can make working with people who share your values are excellent ways to fight mild stress and depression.

Volunteering also presents participants with an opportunity to learn new skills. Nonprofits often look for individuals who are open to learning new tasks. In unpaid volunteer positions, individuals can earn experience in areas such as office administration, childcare, and crisis counseling. They can then take these skills into their professional lives.

Perhaps the most important benefit is that volunteering brings a sense of accomplishment and charity to the lives of volunteers. Engaging with a nonprofit can help volunteers find a way to participate in an activity or cause that is personally relevant, especially if they work in an industry in which they do not receive personal validation.

Events Held at the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life

American Cancer Society pic
American Cancer Society

Ellen Scharaga, operational consultant for Alegria Specialty Pharmacy, is a health-industry. Outside of work, Ellen Scharaga volunteers with nonprofits that focus on medical research, such as the American Cancer Society. Each year, the American Cancer Society sponsors Relay for Life, a nationwide fundraising event. The overnight track walk that brings together cancer survivors and their supporters to raise money toward finding a cure.

Though all local Relay for Life walks have elements that make them unique, three events take place at every walk held throughout the country. The Survivor’s Lap, in which those who have battled cancer take the first turn around the track, always begins the walk. The supporters on the sidelines line up along the track to cheer on the survivors as they walk.

When night falls on the event, a luminaria ceremony is held to honor friends and loved ones who have succumbed to cancer. Participants light candles and place them inside bags around the track with personalized inscriptions written on them to memorialize those who have passed. Additionally, a Fight Back Ceremony, in which all participants are encouraged and inspired to fight back against cancer year-round and commit to helping the American Cancer Society save lives, is held at every event.

Donating to the American Cancer Society

Ellen Scharaga of Melville, NY, currently works as an operational consultant for Alegria Specialty Pharmacy. Over the course of her career in pharmaceuticals, Ellen Scharaga has become a member of several national medical organizations, including the Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association and the American Cancer Society.

There are a number of ways to support the American Cancer Society in its research and advocacy efforts. Making an online donation at is the most direct way of contributing to the cause. Gifts can be made in honor of a cancer survivor or someone currently combating the disease, or in memory of a family member or friend. Contributors do not need to make a gift donation and can instead make a general donation to the American Cancer Society’s research efforts. Donations can be made in any dollar amount and, if desired, can be set to recur each month.

Supporting National Memory Screening Day with the AFA

A pharmaceutical professional with nearly 30 years of experience in administrative management and sales, Ellen Scharaga continues to streamline operational processes and support healthcare institutions in their efforts to provide high-quality care throughout Melville, New York, and surrounding areas. In support of further medical breakthroughs, Ellen Scharaga is also an active benefactor of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America.

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive and degenerative condition that affects as many as 5.1 million Americans and results in symptoms such as short-term memory loss, impaired cognitive and language skills, and behavioral changes. Its symptoms can be easily misinterpreted as “normal aging,” but early detection is instrumental in optimizing treatments.

To help address this problem, since 2003 the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America has sponsored the National Memory Screening initiative, coordinating with healthcare providers and organizations nationwide to provide memory screenings, as well as information about Alzheimer’s symptoms and treatment options. Screenings are free and confidential and can be completed in an average of 5 to 10 minutes. Participating sites throughout New York and the rest of the nation will hold National Memory Screening Day on Nov. 14, 2014, in support of National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month and the AFA’s ongoing efforts.

American Cancer Society Hosts 2014 Smokeout

Ellen Scharaga, a professional in the field of pharmacology, currently lives in Melville, NY. When she is not working as an operational consultant for Alegria Specialty Pharmacy, Ellen Scharaga supports charities and medical research organizations such as the American Cancer Society.

The American Cancer Society recently held the 2014 Great American Smokeout, an annual event celebrated all over the United States. The growing holiday was developed by the American Cancer Society not simply as a event to increase awareness about the seriously harmful effects of smoking, but as a specific day on which smokers can draw up and execute a realistic plan for dropping the habit. The 2014 edition of the Great American Smokeout continued to build on the positive impact of past events. Research has shown that between 2005 and 2012 the number of American smokers decreased from more than one-fifth of the nation’s population to slightly above 18 percent.

The American Cancer Society, as always, continues to strive for more. The Great American Smokeout also gave the organization the opportunity to point out the lack of funding New York State has directed toward anti-smoking campaigns. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has targeted a $200 million budget for the state for these campaigns, which is more than four times the state’s current budget of just $40 million.