October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and many facilities are offering mammograms at reduced rates to encourage women to be screened.
Should a reduced-rate mammogram detect an issue in a woman who is uninsured, there may not be low-cost alternatives for further testing or treatment.
At the Florida Department of Health in Pinellas County, the Florida Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program and Mammography Voucher Program offer these screenings all year at no cost to eligible low-income women who are uninsured and between the ages of 40 and 64. If a woman has her screening through these programs and a problem is found, she can get further testing at no cost and can receive treatment if she is diagnosed with breast cancer.
DOH-Pinellas provides initial appointments at several locations throughout the county. To see if you qualify, call the number that corresponds with your age. If 40 to 49 years old, call 820-4117; women 50 to 64 years old should call 824-6917.
For information online, go to www.PinellasHealth.com and click on the Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program link.
Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in the U.S., and the third leading cause of cancer deaths. When to start mammogram screenings, and how often to repeat them, is a decision for a woman and her doctor, based on her health history, her risk factors and the current recommendations of professional medical organizations.