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BreastScreen WA wins an outstanding service award in Bunbury

29 May, 2008

BreastScreen WA has been awarded for its outstanding cancer detection rates and will celebrate its success in Bunbury soon to acknowledge the support of regional communities.

The service has been awarded a four-year accreditation with commendation, the highest national award, for its outstanding cancer detection rates and high standards of clinical practice in assessing clients.

BreastScreen WA Medical Director Dr Liz Wylie said the service received strong support from regional communities and they would share their success with a celebration in Bunbury.

“BreastScreen WA screens more than 85,000 women annually,” Dr Wylie said.

“During a two year cycle, our four mobile clinics visit about 100 towns around Western Australia and the rural and remote towns have always supported these visits.

“Historically, we’ve seen an increase in the number of local women being screened in the Bunbury region, demonstrating their support for the service.

“4,368 screening mammograms were completed by the BreastScreen WA mobile clinic during the Bunbury visit in 2004.  The screening number increased to 5,180 in the 2006 visit, demonstrating that 73 percent of women residing in Bunbury City, in the target age group (50 to 69 year olds), were screened.”

Dr Wylie said the service had seen a steady increase in participation rates during the current BreastScreen WA mobile clinic’s visit to Bunbury.

“From July 2007 to May 2008, we recorded about 5,400 mammograms,” she said.

The BreastScreen WA mobile clinic is currently in Bunbury and will depart on 16 May to visit Waroona with screenings available from 20 May to 4 June, 2008.  The mobile clinic’s next visit to Bunbury will be around July 2009 to May 2010.

Dr Wylie said there were 175 BreastScreen Australia National Accreditation Standards, which are designed to ensure the national mammographic screening program offers a high quality service to women for screening and assessment.

“Services that are very successful are given accreditation for four years.  Others receive accreditation for two years, and are reviewed again after that time,” she said.

“It is an honour to be awarded four year accreditation with commendation.  We are happy to be able to provide a professional service that has been recognised nationally.”

About 220 WA women die from breast cancer each year.  One in eight women in Australia will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.

The best way to reduce the number of deaths from the disease is to detect and treat breast cancer as early as possible.

“Screening mammograms can detect changes in the breast as small as a grain of rice and detects up to 90 per cent of breast cancers,” Dr Wylie said.

BreastScreen WA provides a free statewide screening mammography and assessment service to women aged 40 years and over every two years.  Contact information: 13 20 50.