Mammogram Reminders

Mammogram_scan_blog_july09.JPG Mammograms are an important tool for woman to screen themselves for breast cancer. All women over age 40 are suggested to use a mammogram as a diagnostic scan to detect masses in their breasts. But many women forget to schedule these screening tests, or wait too long between tests. The American Cancer Society recently fronted the movement to send out reminders to a study group of women to see if it would effectively increase the number of women utilizing the scan. "Regular screening is critical to insuring the greatest likelihood of detecting cancer early. The value of reminder systems is well established, and the study shows that they can be very effective on a mass scale. Ideally, the health care reforms that we can look forward to will include reminder systems for cancer screening for all adults" stated the American Cancer Society website. As a result of this reminder system, including mail and phone calls, over 80% of women in the study had scheduled their yearly mammogram. This is in comparison to the 63% pre-reminder system. In order to best treat cancer, early detection is crucial. The ACS hopes that this study will spark other healthcare provides to send out reminder letters to their patients on a variety of other cancer screenings as well.

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