Fine Gael TD for Longford/Westmeath, Gabrielle McFadden, has said the extension of BreastCheck to women aged 65-69 will save lives.
“I am very pleased that Minister for Health Leo Varadkar has now fulfilled this Government’s commitment to extend BreastCheck, the successful free national breast screening programme. Up until now, BreastCheck screened women aged 50 to 64.
“With coverage now extending to include women from 50 to 69, the total eligible population for BreastCheck will be approximately 544,000 women.
“Unfortunately breast cancer has touched a huge number of families in this country. According to the Irish Cancer Society, the incidence of female breast cancer is second highest amongst the 60-69 age group. BreastCheck will now include these women and will increase early detection rates.
“Latest figures show that the programme has provided 1.2m mammograms to more than almost half a million women and detected more than 7,400 cancers.
“Early detection is key to good outcomes for women affected by breast cancer and the extension of BreastCheck to women aged 65-69 is really positive for women’s health in Ireland.”