SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A new 40-foot weapon on a mission to detect breast cancer is coming to a town near you.
Nineteen years after introducing its first mobile mammography van, St. Joseph’s/Candler (SJC) just rolled out a new unit.
“What’s so great is the fact that this van goes to very rural areas, you know, all the counties,” SJC Foundations Executive Director Vernice Rackett said.
“We’ve seen an uptick of 400 screenings just in the last year with people that are desiring to come for the mobile versus driving,” she added.
Health experts say cases are being caught at an earlier stage because of mobile mammography. Providing breast screenings and education on the new unit comes with an upgrade that many women want: 3D technology.
“Patients now have a choice,” Rackett said. “3D is especially good for patients that have dense breasts history of breast cancer.”
“And the images that you see are actually sliced,” she added. “If you take a book and take the book and how the book opens those pages are as finite as images that you will see and that imaging of the breast to help the radiologist pinpoint much more exactly areas of imperfection.”
Mammography technologist Kimberly Jones-Dowdell says staying on the go and connecting with our communities to increase breast health services helps save lives.
“They want us to give patients what they want and what they definitely need, and we want to do that, so it’s a benefit to them,” Jones-Dowdell said. “It’s a benefit to us to know that we’re giving them something that they want and something that’s gonna help them.”
Even in the midst of a pandemic, you can still get a mammogram in the new unit. News 3 is told Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines are being followed.
Most insurance will pay for mammograms but if you need support, help is available. For more information on screenings or to schedule an appointment on the mobile unit call (800) 395-7873 or 819-6800.
View the mobile mammography schedules for June and July below.
In the meantime, don’t forget to do your breast self exam and remind your buddies. Learn more about the Buddy Check 3 program here.