Harlow Women Putting Their Health At Risk
The number of women in Harlow attending vital breast screening is worrying low.
Since August 2011 a mobile unit has been available in the town centre to make it easy for those with appointments to attend. However the uptake is currently just 59% of all who have been invited.
With the unit only remaining in Harlow until 26th April 2012, time is running out for local women to have the 10 minute test which can detect breast cancer. Once the unit moves on to a new location it will not return for three years.
So far 7910 women have been invited for screening since July 2011. Of the 4628 to attend, 137 have been called back for further assessment and 33 have been diagnosed with breast cancer. Those patients have now begun life saving treatment.
Janet Skeys, Breast Service Manager said: “Our mobile unit has recently been refurbished and contains the latest equipment and technology. Upon arrival each patient will be greeted by a Radiographer who will explain the process. The screening takes less than 10 minutes and the results are available two to three weeks later. We urge everyone to attend their appointments as we are literally talking about saving people’s lives.”
Women are screened every three years after the age of 50. The number who die from breast cancer is still significant – around 12,000 a year in the UK – but if it is caught early enough the outcomes, with modern treatments, are very good and radical surgery is not usually necessary.
Women will receive an invitation to attend with appointment times which can be changed if inconvenient. Some Saturday clinics are now available and special arrangements can be made for women with a disability if they contact 01279827046