The buzz around Breast Cancer Awareness Month is everywhere. Hundreds of organizations, societies and support groups have done an excellent job in bringing breast cancer to a place where it is not only publicly recognized, but it is talked about and has become a cure to rally behind by the general public. Events, and of course the not-so-subtle color PINK, brighten my neighborhood and daily intake of news.
Pink NFL uniforms catch my eye on Sundays. Schools and businesses rally behind the cause on weekdays. Runners, walkers and bikers get out on Saturdays to participate in fundraisers for the cause. Perhaps the most exciting trend is the continued local effort sweeping the nation, of bringing mobile mammography and free screenings to more and more women.
Mobile mammography buses have been hitting the roads all year round, but with particular prominence in this special month of October. They are providing free screenings to women in urban, suburban and rural areas. In my county of San Diego, I have seen press from local news and advertising for events such as Community Health Imaging Centers’ Mobile Mammo, or Alinea Medical Imaging’s partnership with the YWCA for quality screenings and early detection. Traveling units like these provide the opportunity to have one’s suggested annual mammogram at no charge.
And the trend is nationwide. Programs like that from the National Breast Cancer Foundation partner with women’s health providers across the nation. They offer the same free service in an established setting, where follow-up care can be provided by the local facility. Whether the program is local or national, the goal is the same: affording women from diverse backgrounds and geographic locations the chance to receive top-class care through mobile technology.
As mobile units become more and more the norm for causes like Breast Cancer, I can’t help but be excited for the role image sharing technology plays. Both receiving patients and attending providers can now take advantage of image sharing technology to close the loop on image management.
That saying ‘there’s an app for that’? Well, it’s true.
After the patient’s exam, what if the technician could securely share the image with the patient via email for her own copy? And what if a physician or technician not in the mobile unit could consult on the patient remotely, because the imaging was shared directly to them from the mobile mammogram unit? Well, the time is now for these kinds of apps. It is amazing to see the potential that traveling medicine has brought to healthcare today. I am grateful that causes such as Breast Cancer Awareness Month have exploded into the spotlight in our nation. Now, go find the closest mammo-on-the-move near you!