The GNWT has announced an expansion to their breast cancer screening programs.
Beginning in June, South Slave region patients will have access to the program which is set for a one-year time period.
The expansion will increase the availability of screening procedures at the Hay River Hospital to two weeks a month, up from the current one week program in place and is set to begin on June 22.
As stated in a press release sent out by the GNWT, the number of breast cancer diagnoses is continuing to increase in the NWT.
Approximately 20 new cases are diagnosed each year, making breast cancer 40 per cent of the cancers diagnosed in women.
According to Roxie Small, diagnostics imaging supervisor at the hospital, the months of July and August will see one week of screenings. If the demand is there for the second week, it will be added in.
The first week of screenings, from June 22 – 26 will see a majority of cliental from Fort Smith who will be charted in by plane for their appointments.
“We are going to try to screen individuals in a way so that their annual doesn’t all happen at once,” said Small in regards to the two week intervals.
Eligible women will be chartered in from all over the South Slave region and further to receive screenings at the Hay River Hospital.
“We are a good location to do this centralized program,” said Sue Cullen, CEO of the Hay River Health and Social Services Authority. “I think we have done an exemplary job not just with the screening but also the follow-up.”
The program also has an education aspect with a 15 minute video on self-given breast examinations playing for women to watch before or after their screening.
“We are really hoping for a good response and turn out,” said Small.