Dana-Farber Cancer Institute provides convenient care services and promotes public health among high-risk populations of women in Greater Boston’s low-income communities. Our Mammography Van—the only mobile digital mammography program in Massachusetts—is an integral part of our efforts to increase access to screening and breast health education.
Partnering with 17 community health centers, the Mammography Van offers women age 40+ critical mammograms from board-certified technologists, breast health education, referrals to primary care providers, and guidance for obtaining health insurance coverage. Scans are reviewed by Dana-Farber radiologists, and program staff members ensure that women with abnormal findings are scheduled for follow-up care. The Mammography Van’s consistent presence in Boston’s diverse neighborhoods and multilingual staff members help break down geographic, linguistic, and financial barriers to care, and make mammograms more accessible to those who might otherwise be unlikely to obtain them.
According to the National Cancer Institute, black women are 42% more likely to die from breast cancer than white women—despite similar incidence rates—making community-based education, prevention, and early detection services crucial to reducing the dangers of this disease.
Since 2002, Dana-Farber’s Mammography Van has provided more than 44,000 mammograms to more than 19,000 patients and detected 138 cases of breast cancer.
Dana-Farber’s Mammography Van maintains a variety of partnerships within the Greater Boston area to ensure all women and men have access to quality breast health education and cancer, including partnering with community health centers to bring cancer prevention screening and education to women in the neighborhoods where they live and work. Health educators provide one-on-one counseling to patients after they receive a mammogram, emphasizing the importance of comprehensive follow-up, a point at which disparities begin.
Your support of the Jimmy Fund helps Dana-Farber Cancer Institute fund local, community-based initiatives to provide breast cancer education and early detection services where they are needed most.