Health dept. offering breast cancer screenings

Published 10:47 am Thursday, October 13, 2016

Screening is often the first step, and one of the most important, in detecting breast cancer.

For those without insurance or a regular doctor, the Clark County Health Department is offering screenings to qualifying women.

“We do screenings on those who are 40 to 64 years old that have no insurance and medicaid or Medicare,” said Anne Hatton of the Clark County Health Department. “We prefer to focus on those with no insurance or primary care doctors.”

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The American Cancer Society recommends an annual mammogram for women age 45 to 55 and every two years after that, provided they remain in good health. For those with higher risk or the inherited breast cancer gene, more aggressive treatment is required.

In recent years, the number of women seeking screenings at the department as dropped as more people have added health insurance.

“With the Affordable Care Act, we don’t see as many people as we used to,” she said. “When they’re covered, they’re able to go to a primary care doctor. We want them to have a medical home. That’s why we want to focus on those women.”

The health department will perform an examination for those with insurance and refer them to Clark Regional Medical Center for a mammogram, she said.

While breast cancer is most common in women, it does occur in men. The Susan G. Komen Foundation, though, does not recommend screenings for men unless they are at high risk because of an inherited BRCA gene mutation or a strong family history of breast cancer.

For more information, call the health department at 744-4482.

About Fred Petke

Fred Petke is a reporter for The Winchester Sun, the Jessamine Journal and the State Journal. His beats include cops, courts, fire, public records, city and county government and other news. To contact Fred, email or call 859-759-0051.

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