Thursday, 8 November 2012

Ceisteanna (67)

Charlie McConalogue

Ceist:

67. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Health when BreastCheck will be extended to women aged 65 to 69 years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [48929/12]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The BreastCheck Programme provides free mammograms to all women aged 50-64. The Programme for Government includes the extension of Breastcheck to women in the 65-69 age group, in keeping with EU Guidelines on effective screening for breast cancer.

The main priority for the HSE's National Cancer Screening Service (NCSS) at present is to maximise national uptake in the 50-64 year age cohort.

The extension of the BreastCheck programme has been listed as a priority in the HSE's 3 year Corporate Plan (2012 -2015). The HSE's National Cancer Control Programme is examining how it can extend the programme to 65-69 year olds. A review of the BreastCheck screening process, which will conclude shortly, should help to inform how greater efficiencies may be achieved within the Programme.

In the meantime women of any age who have concerns about breast cancer should seek the advice of their GP who will, if appropriate, refer them to the symptomatic breast services in one of the eight designated specialist cancer centres.