A mobile breast cancer screening coach is coming to the Parksville Qualicum Beach area. - Photo courtesy BC Cancer

Mobile breast cancer screening coming to Parksville Qualicum Beach

Vehicles provide state-of-the-art digital screening mammograms

A mobile breast cancer screening coach is coming to the Parksville Qualicum Beach area.

The vehicles, that provide state-of-the-art digital screening mammograms, will be in Qualicum Beach at the Qualicum Beach Civic Centre from Jan. 28-31 and again Feb. 4-6. The service will then be in Parksville at Shoppers Drug Mart (140 East Island Highway) on Feb. 7, 11-14 and 19-22.

BC Cancer’s breast screening program offers no-cost screening mammograms to eligible women in B.C.

A screening mammogram consists of four images (two of each breast) that look for hidden cancer in women who are healthy with no symptoms and have never had breast cancer. Mammograms can usually find lumps two to three years before a woman or her primary care provider can feel them.

“Mammograms save lives by detecting breast cancers early, often before they have spread and when more treatment options are available,” said Dr. Colin Mar, medical director for the breast screening program. “More women in B.C. are being diagnosed with breast cancer, but fewer are dying from the disease. This is in large part due to early detection and treatment.”

Approximately one in eight women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. It is the most common type of cancer found in women in B.C. with around 3,500 B.C. women receiving a breast cancer diagnosis each year. Regular screening mammograms can find breast cancer early, often before it has spread.

It is recommended that women age 40 to 74 who have a mother, daughter or sister with breast cancer receive a mammogram every year. Women age 40 to 74 without a family history of breast cancer should schedule a mammogram every two years.

About 10 per cent of all screening mammograms performed in B.C. are done on the mobile units.

Three mobile screening coaches visit more than 170 rural and remote communities across B.C. each year, including over 40 Indigenous communities.

To book a screening mammogram call 1-800-663-9203. A doctor’s referral is not required.

— NEWS Staff

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