Breast cancer screen set to go from town

A BREAST cancer service might have to withdraw its mobile screening programme from a Suffolk town if it cannot find a new home, it has emerged.

Danielle Nuttall

A BREAST cancer service might have to withdraw its mobile screening programme from a Suffolk town if it cannot find a new home, it has emerged.

The East Suffolk Breast Screening Service's mobile screening van provides mammograms to detect early stage cancer to 500 women annually in Framlingham.

The van parks in the town for four weeks a year in the car park of Framlingham Castle, however English Heritage now needs the space for visitor parking.

The van now needs to find a new hard-standing site with electricity and water supplies nearby and access to toilet facilities for staff.

Judith Berrill, programme manager for the East Suffolk Breast Screening Service and a superintendent radiographer at Ipswich Hospital, said: “We're endeavouring to find an alternative site in Framlingham but if we're unable to do so the women of Framlingham, after almost 20 years of having this vital service in their town, will have to travel to Woodbridge or Leiston.

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“This will be a huge shame and we really hope there's a small business or some other organisation which can step forward and help the women of its town.”

The mobile van is part of the national NHS Breast Screening Programme, which invites all women aged between 50 and 70 for screening every three years.

It travels and serves women all over east Suffolk.

Another van is permanently situated at St Clements Hospital in Ipswich.

One in nine women will develop breast cancer and mammograms can show cancers at an early stage when they are too small for patients or doctors to see or feel.

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