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New mammography system

28 October 2011

A new computer system which will manage the invitation and management of breast screening appointments, results and recall for further screening or further investigations has been introduced in Jersey.

The new mammography information system is being implemented this month, in line with breast cancer awareness month, and enables staff to adopt new working practices that will improve patient safety, save time and reduce duplication. One of the advantages of the new system is the automated appointment scheduling which ensures women are automatically sent a breast screening appointment at the correct time interval since their previous screening date.

The system will be one of the points of interest on a visit to Health and Social Services by the new Lieutenant Governor, General Sir John McColl, and his wife, Lady McColl, on Friday 28 October, as they tour Health and Social Services on an inaugural visit.

Head of healthcare programmes, Dr Linda Diggle said: “We are very pleased to be able to show this new system to the Lieutenant Governor, and Lady McColl. In Jersey, breast screening is aimed at women aged between 50 and 69. Although women are still required to make the first contact with the service to register their wish to join the programme, once they are in the system, they will then be invited back for regular repeat screening, usually every 2 years. 

Detecting cancer early

"If we can detect and treat breast cancer early, we not only give the patient peace of mind, but also avoid treatment costs which can increase if breast cancer has to be treated later on," added Dr Diggle. "While screening cannot prevent breast cancer, it can detect cancer if it is there at an early stage." Breast screening, known as a mammogram, which takes place in the Le Quesne Unit of the General Hospital, is done only by female staff. The appointment takes around 30 minutes.

It is hoped that a local breast screening awareness campaign will also help the breast screening team reach more women; in Jersey, there is currently a 64 per cent population coverage rate in comparison to the desired UK benchmark of 80%.

Minister for Health and Social Services, Deputy Anne Pryke said “I am delighted to welcome His Excellency, General Sir John McColl, and Lady McColl to Health and Social Services, so they can see first hand the varied work our hard working staff do across so many different areas of health and social care. I am very proud of our staff, and the many services we provide for Islanders. I hope that the visit gives the Lieutenant Governer and Lady McCall an insight into the work we do, across many specialised fields.’

Following his visit to the Hospital to see the new system, the Lieutenant Governor and Lady McColl will visit the Hospital’s intensive care unit, before driving to St Mark’s Hostel, which provides a home for vulnerable young people, and Maison Jubilee, a group home for people with special needs.

This month, the Public Health department have launched an Island-wide campaign aimed at women aged between 50 and 69, to raise awareness about breast screening, featuring banners, leaflets and posters across the Island. An eye-catching “Time To Act” banner is at the Steam Clock to highlight the campaign. All women aged 50-69 who are not yet registered on the programme are advised to contact the breast screening service on 443790.

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