Mary Anne Conway – Surgical Services & Cancer Clinic

Mary Anne ConwayAs a retired nurse, Mary Anne Conway knows the importance of living a healthy lifestyle. But despite all the good things she does for her health, she was grateful for the care and support she received from the Brant Community Healthcare System (BCHS) in her time of need.

After a routine mammogram in late 2012, Mary Anne received a call to return to The Brantford General site for additional tests, including an ultrasound. The follow-up tests revealed a small lump. Mary Anne was in shock and disbelief when she was told she had Stage 1 breast cancer. Fortunately, it was one of the least aggressive forms of cancer and thankfully, because she has annual mammograms, it was caught quickly.

Mammography is a specialized X-ray used to evaluate the breasts for diseases. They are performed for both diagnostic and screening purposes. In Mary Anne’s case, the mammogram was used as a means of early cancer detection.

Mary Anne said the BCHS staff in the mammogram department made her feel at ease, especially at a time when she was anxious about what was happening.

It helped her feel more comfortable to be in the care of Dr. Denise Schnider, a surgeon at the BCHS.

Dr. Schnider brought Mary Anne’s husband, Mike, in on their discussions about a treatment plan. She felt that the medical staff were professional and courteous, willing to answer any question, and it was comforting to have her husband there to support her.

“I’m normally a very healthy person,” she said. “So this was a real eye-opener – even with my professional medical background.”

Mary Anne was scheduled for a lumpectomy and the day she arrived at the BCHS for her surgery, she received the personalized attention of one of the BCHS’s many volunteers to get her to the various departments, such as nuclear medicine, for her prep-op tests.

“It was nice to see a familiar face,” said Mary Anne, who has been part of the BCHS volunteer force herself for five years.

After her surgery, Mary Anne received a round of radiation treatments and now attends regular follow-up appointments at the Brant Community Cancer Clinic. She said the staff and doctors at the local cancer clinic have been supportive and compassionate during her follow-up visits.

“They were really good through this whole thing,” she said. “They really make you feel at ease.”

Last year, the Brant Community Cancer Clinic at the Brantford General treated more than 3,000 patients from our area. Currently, cancer care at the BCHS includes a range of consult visits for patients, systemic therapy and chemotherapy for breast, lung, colorectal and prostate cancers. We now offer consult visits and follow-up for radiation therapy patients.

“My whole story is fortunate and as a result, I have become a huge advocate for early screening,” she said.

Mary Anne’s story is a part of the Brant Community Healthcare System Foundation’s 12 Days of Giving Campaign.

The equipment supported by donor dollars isn’t all ‘nice to have’ — it is critical, much-needed medical equipment required to perform daily diagnostics and care for patients.

As Mary Anne has learned first-hand, when crisis or illness impacts you or a loved one, the Brant Community Healthcare System is here to offer you exceptional healthcare in your time of need. Now is the time to make a difference, please consider making a gift TODAY that is meaningful to you, and support a strong healthcare system for our community.

Your involvement, through a donation of any size, will allow the BCHS Foundation to purchase patient equipment not funded by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, provide essential resources to maintain the exceptional level of compassionate patient care, and invest in new and innovative technology.

To make a donation, click here at or call 519-751-5510.

This holiday season, give a gift that could save a life and be a part of the Brant Community Healthcare System Foundation’s 12 Days of Giving Campaign.