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Editorial


Front Page - Friday, August 9, 2019

Erlanger to offer free Well-Women Early Detection program




Erlanger Health System, in partnership with the Tennessee Breast and Cervical Screening Program, is offering a new Well-Women Early Detection Program providing free breast and cervical cancer screenings and diagnostic services for qualified patients.

Erlanger medical specialists hope by partnering in the free program, more women will choose to participate in these lifesaving services.

To qualify, a woman must be a Tennessee resident, meet specific income requirements, be uninsured (or have insurance that does not cover mammograms or PAP tests) and be between the ages of 40 and 64 for mammograms and 50 years or older for PAP tests.

According to The Tennessee Breast and Cervical Screening Program, over 5,000 women in the Chattanooga area qualified for care in 2017 but just over 100 participated in the screening.

“We were shocked to learn so many qualified women were not receiving this free service and decided for Erlanger would become a screening provider for the Tennessee program,” says Janet Kramer-Mai, Erlanger’s director of oncology support services. “We have a lot of work to do to get the word out.”

Three out of four women diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history of the disease. Mammograms have been shown to help reduce breast mortality in the United States by 40% since 1990. Cervical cancer is highly treatable if found early. Studies show 50% of women diagnosed with cervical cancer have never had a PAP test.

“I can’t speak enough about the importance of mammography screening and well-woman care,” adds Kramer-Mai. “The earlier we can detect any type of cancer, the better the chance we have to treat and cure the patient.”

As a screening provider for Tennessee Breast and Cervical Program, Erlanger Health System offers screening and diagnostic services at Erlanger Bledsoe Hospital, Erlanger North Hospital, Erlanger Baroness Hospital and Erlanger East Hospital.

More information on the program is available at www.erlanger.org/wellwoman. For qualifying information or to schedule an appointment, call Erlanger’s Cancer Support Services at 423 778-8999 or 423 778-6357.

Source: Erlanger Health System