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The difference you can make when you're all for health.

A healing outdoor retreat for women with breast cancer

Fly fishing may not seem like the most obvious form of therapy for women with breast cancer. But as the Highmark members who attend the annual Casting for Recovery (CfR) retreat will attest, the experience can be life-changing.

These weekend-long retreats are open to women with all stages of breast cancer, in all stages of treatment and recovery. And the benefits are equal parts physical and emotional.

Following treatment, the gentle motion of fly casting can actually help increase mobility in the arm and upper body.

Combine the physical therapy of fishing with the opportunity to make friends and reconnect with nature and it’s clear why Highmark sponsors this powerful program.

Support before, during, and after diagnosis

Today, breast cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer in women — after skin cancer. That’s why Highmark is proud to provide members with myriad ways to screen for and treat this increasingly common diagnosis.

From mammograms that aid in early detection to a wide range of effective treatment options — including surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and hormonal therapy — Highmark members now have more support than ever before.

But, not all forms of treatment necessarily take place at a hospital. Since 1996, Casting for Recovery has been committed to improving the quality of life for women with breast cancer. In fact, this innovative program has garnered endorsements from medical and psychosocial experts nationwide.

Powerful medicine

Casting for Recovery was founded on two principles. First, the natural world is a healing force. Second, women with breast cancer deserve one weekend to experience something new and challenging in a beautiful, safe environment. It’s for these reasons that all of CfR’s two-and-a-half day retreats are 100% free for participants.

Here are a few additional highlights of the program:

  • Retreats incorporate fly fishing instruction and emotional support — ending with a half day of guided catch-and-release fly fishing.
  • The focus is on wellness, empowerment, and opportunity.
  • CfR is committed to ethnic, socioeconomic, and cultural diversity. Participants range in age from 23 to over 90.
  • At least one medical professional, one psychosocial counselor, and four fly fishing instructors attend each retreat.
  • The program is appropriate for women in all stages of treatment and recovery — as well as various stages of physical and emotional adaptation to breast cancer.

Results that matter

One of the primary reasons Highmark sponsors Casting for Recovery is because of the compelling results. Post-retreat surveys show that 100% of attendees would recommend the program to others. Living proof that this unique program is making a difference in the lives of women with breast cancer.

Additionally, more than 90% say they gained a new support base with new friends, were better able to cope with their situation, and learned something new about living with breast cancer.

Learn more about breast cancer and Casting for Recovery

Simply being a woman means being at risk for developing breast cancer. To learn about the screening and treatment options available to you, call -1888-BLUE-428 or dial the number on the back of your member ID card.

Casting for Recovery is open to women of all ages, at all stages of breast cancer — regardless of your health care provider. To find out more about this incredible healing program, go to

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