Breast Cancer Awareness Month has started at Arnprior Regional Health with positive recognition from Cancer Care Ontario for our commitment to reducing the time between screening and diagnosis.
The Ontario Breast Screening Program (OBSP) guided by Cancer Care Ontario and delivered by ARH, provides high-quality breast screening for women 50 to 74 years old. Every year, Cancer Care Ontario sets targets to ensure this quality is achieved. The goal for 2017-2018 was that 90% of women with an abnormal mammogram were diagnosed within seven weeks, a 10% increase over the provincial rate at the time.
Cancer Care Ontario has recognized ARH for having met this target in 2017/2018. This goal is also in place for 2018-2018, and ARH is on track to meet the goal again.
“We’ve put a number of measures in place to meet this target,” says Vicki Hallas, Manager of Diagnostic Imaging at ARH. “We’ve partnered with Pembroke Hospital to reduce the wait time for biopsies, we’ve worked with the family physicians to streamline communications and automatically send referrals with the appropriate documentation to the breast biopsy referral centre.”
Screening mammography can find breast cancers when they are small, less likely to have spread (metastasized) to the lymph nodes and more likely to be successfully treated. Women ages 50 to 74 are encouraged to get screened through OBSP to receive all the program benefits, such as coordination of follow-up tests, tracking test results and providing navigation from screening test to final diagnosis for women with abnormal screening results.
If you are a woman between the ages of 50 and 74 and would like book a screening through the OBSP at ARH, call (613) 623-7962 ext. 359 to book an appointment. You do not need a referral from your family doctor – all you need is a valid health card. Women over 74 who would like to be screened as part of OBSP require a referral from their family doctor or nurse practitioner.