Permanent BreastScreen clinic at Charmhaven

A permanent BreastScreen clinic has opened at Charmhaven.

For years, women have had to wait for the mobile BreastScreen van to come to Lake Haven shopping centre about every six months, but from July 1, there will be a permanent clinic at Charmhaven Village shops on the Pacific Highway.

Breast cancer is the third most common type of cancer on the Central Coast, says Meredith Kay, who is Director of Breast Screen NSW Northern Sydney and Central Coast.

“Having a mammogram is one of the most important things women aged 50 to 74 can do for their health,” she said.

“We know that many women are still putting off their screening because they don’t have family history of breast cancer.

“However, nine out of 10 women who develop breast cancer do not have a family history of the disease.”

Kay said the mobile BreastScreen services have been coming to Lake Haven since 2007 and there was an increasing number of women in the area being screened, so it was viable to establish a new permanent site so that more women could be screened.

“We want to continually build our presence, our profile and awareness of the importance of breast health in the area,” Kay said.

“By detecting breast cancer early, breast screening not only saves lives but also reduces the likelihood of a woman needing invasive treatment such as a mastectomy or chemotherapy.

“We have come a long way with cancer treatment, but the reality is that the more extensive the cancer is, the more it can detrimentally affect quality of life,” Kay said.

The new clinic at Charmhaven will be the second permanent BreastScreen NSW location on the Central Coast, the other one is at Erina.

Mammograms through BreastScreen NSW are free and can be booked online or by phone.

“When breast cancer is found early, the survival rate can be as high as 97 percent,” Kay said.

Harry Mulholland