The Stony Brook Cancer Center’s Mobile Mammography Van recently provided its 5,000th free cancer screening in four years, a milestone it reached days before the region marked Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
The custom-built, 40-foot state-of-the art van equipped with 3D digital mammography equipment has been on the road touring Long Island providing mammograms since 2018. In that time, cancer has been diagnosed in 27 women who’ve been tested in the van.
“It’s important to Long Island because this mobile unit is making it much easier for women to access mammograms,” says Dr. Patrick J. Dineen, program coordinator for Stony Brook Cancer Center’s Mammography Mobile Screening Program. “Over half the patients screened on the mobile unit are uninsured and this allows them to get a mammogram at no cost.”
Mobile Mammography Van Program
The Mobile Mammography Van includes a check-in area, changing room, one-way windows and exam room in addition to the mammography suite. After each 15-minute screening, all patients leave with educational materials and are guided through the process if they need follow-up imaging, a biopsy or treatments.
Local businesses, churches, schools, libraries and other organizations often call to ask that the van attend area events, sometimes more than once annually, Dr. Dineen says.
More than 80% of the patients who have been diagnosed through the Mobile Mammography Van screening program have elected to be treated at Stony Brook Cancer Center.
The program recently expanded services on the mobile unit to include blood pressures, cholesterol screenings and blood glucose level test.
FIT (fecal immunochemical test) kits that contain materials for noninvasive colon cancer screenings are also distributed for individuals to complete at home.
While people are encouraged to schedule an appointment, the van can accommodate walk-ins.
For more information, call 833-MY-MAMMO or visit bit.ly/SBMammoVan