BreastScreen Mackay is celebrating 25 years of providing life-saving checks for women in the Mackay Hospital and Health Service (Mackay HHS).
Mackay HHS Chief Executive Lisa Davies Jones said the service had grown significantly since opening in 1996 and had helped more than 40,000 women be aware of their breast health.
“In BreastScreen’s first year of operation in Mackay they screened 1948 women and this year we are looking at doing around 8500 screens,” she said.
The examination helps detect breast cancer in its very early stages when treatment can be more effective.
Ms Davies Jones said the service had changed over the years including the introduction of digital imaging in 2012.
“These higher definition x-rays provide more detail and faster results for women,” she said.
In 2013 the service expanded beyond the Wellington Street clinic with the allocation of a permanent mobile screening bus visiting communities across the health service.
“This has allowed us to visit rural communities on a more regular basis to make breast screens more accessible to women outside of Mackay.”
Sue Mitchell was the first woman to have a breast screen in Mackay 25 years ago and she’s still lining up for her regular mammograms.
Sue happily admits to nagging friends and neighbours to have the free check.
“It might be a little uncomfortable but any anxieties you have will be put to rest once you come here,” she said.
“The process is quick, you are in and out in twenty minutes, and the results get sent to your GP.
“Once you have your first appointment it just becomes routine. You’ll get your reminder every two years and the booking process is easy.”
Appointments are available at BreastScreen Queensland Mackay Service, Wellington Street from Monday to Friday including early morning, late evening and some Saturdays.
All BreastScreen images are read by two independent specialist doctors, and women and their doctor receive a letter with the results. It’s convenient, it’s free and no GP referral is required.
To make an appointment phone 13 20 50 or visit breastscreen.qld.gov.au.