BC Cancer’s Mobile Mammography Unit comes to the Coast!

BC Cancer’s Mobile Mammography Unit comes to the Coast!

Supporting early detection is the best defence against cancer. Next month, Sechelt Hospital Foundation and Vancouver Coastal Health are welcoming BC Cancer’s Mobile Mammography Unit to the Coast! The van will be offering breast cancer screenings in Sechelt from December 6 to 9.

“Having the BC Cancer team here in Sechelt will give us a temporary boost to our existing screening services, allowing our Medical Imaging Department to focus on doing the fast tracks and diagnostics that follow,” says Kelsey Oxley, Medical Imaging Site Coordinator at Sechelt Hospital. “Working together, we will be able to advance care for more people in our community.”

Breast cancer screenings are available. To book with the Mobile Mammography Unit from December 6 to 9, call BC Cancer Breast Screening at 1-800-663-9203.

Implemented in 2015 by BC Cancer’s Breast Screening Program, this Mobile Mammography Unit is one of three Screening Mammography Program vehicles in B.C. These vans provide screening mammography services in rural and remote communities including the Gulf Islands, Central and North Vancouver Island as well as Bella Bella and Bella Coola. They visit more than 120 rural communities throughout B.C. annually.

The vans are equipped with a wheelchair lift, a spacious waiting area, and an examination room, providing clients with a comfortable and consistent mammography experience at all locations.

The van’s digital mammography allows for greater efficiency in sharing of images. Technologists are able to see the images right away to ensure image quality.

Sechelt Hospital Foundation hosted a Women’s Health MedTalk this September which included the benefit of screening and featured one of Canada’s top radiologists, Dr. Paula Gordon. To learn more about screening and understanding breast density, please visit sechelthospitalfoundation.org to view the MedTalks recordings.

“BC Cancer has no doubt saved countless lives, including my own, by making screening mammograms more accessible,” says Jane Macdonald, Executive Director of Sechelt Hospital Foundation. “In addition to the digital mammography machine at Sechelt Hospital, which was purchased thanks to our donor contributions, the arrival of the mammography van will help more members of our community get screened quickly.”

BC Cancer recommends women ages 50 to 74 have a mammogram every two years. Women ages 40 to 49, and women 75 and older are encouraged to discuss the benefits and limitations of mammography with their doctor. If they choose to have a mammogram, these are available every two years and a doctor’s referral is not needed.

Who is Eligible?

  • must be a B.C. resident
  • women 40 to 49 years of age: have access to screening every two years
  • women 50 to74 years of age: recommended screening every two years
  • women 75 years and older: continue to have access to screening without a doctor’s referral
  • women 40 to74 years of age *with a family history of breast cancer in a first degree relative (mother, sister, daughter) to receive annual screening
  • have no breast changes (e.g. new lumps, thickening or discharge)
  • can provide the name of a doctor to receive the results
  • have not had a mammogram within 12 months
  • have not had breast cancer
  • do not have breast implants
  • are not pregnant or breast-feeding

If you do not meet the criteria for screening mammography, please talk to your health care provider to find out about other mammography options. Call BC Cancer Breast Screening today at 1-800-663-9203 to book your mammogram appointment.