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Female immigrants less likely to get screened for breast cancer: study by BC Cancer

Another group of doctors is calling on the province to reconsider changes to the physician billing agreement in Alberta.
Another group of doctors is calling on the province to reconsider changes to the physician billing agreement in Alberta. Global News

A new study by BC Cancer has found female immigrants are less likely to get themselves screened for breast cancer than women born in British Columbia.

Scientific Director Ryan Woods said a big reason is because immigrants have a hard time finding a family doctor.

“Having regular contact with a family physician, is associated with increased screening.”

However, that shouldn’t stop women from getting screened.

“You don’t actually need a family physician to refer you for going to a breast screening in B.C., you can book the appointment yourself,” he said.

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Woods said they have a long way to go to get to their target.

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“Screening targets for participation rates are generally 70 per cent.”

According to BC Cancer, women between the ages of 50 and 74 with no family history of breast cancer should get a mammogram every two years, while women between the ages of 40 and 74 with a history of breast cancer in the family should be checked every year.