by MARY MAGEE
breast cancer survivors have celebrated 30 years of breast
screening by becoming community ambassadors for the service.
To mark the 30th anniversary of Action Cancer's breast
screening service the charity invited some ladies who had been
detected through Action Cancer to attend a celebratory lunch
The group included Joan Laughlin, Marie McDonald, Karen
Blythe and Irene Sturgeon from Lisburn whose breast cancer was
detected by the cancer charity.
At the lunch Joan, Marie, Karen, Irene and the other ladies
were asked to become ambassadors of breast screening in their
own communities —telling neighbours, friends, colleagues and
relatives of their experience and encouraging them to be
proactive with their health and get screened. Joanna Currie,
Consultant Radiographer for Action Cancer said: "Research has
proven that breast screening reduces mortality but, for various
reasons, we still find some ladies don't come forward. This can
be because they don't know of our service, they keep meaning to
do it or they think it won't happen to them but Action Cancer
feel very strongly that these ladies should be encouraged to
The community-based approach is central to the charity's
Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign and are joining forces with
Gordons Chemists, who will be helping to fundraise and take the
screening message directly to the public.
Aine McManus Manager of the local Gordons Chemists store on
Bow Street said: "This year is a three decade milestone for
Action Cancer and it's possible that hearing the stories of some
of the ladies that the charity has helped over the years will
help to save even more lives. It also reminds us why we are
doing this campaign and what the money that we raise will go
Northern Ireland ladies aged 50-64 are invited by the NHS to
attend for their mammogram while those aged 40-49 and 65+, who
fall outside of the NHS age range, can contact Action Cancer to
arrange a breast screening appointment.
Every month approximately 1100 appointments are available
through Action Cancer House. Anyone interested in obtaining an
appointment should call the Action Cancer appointments line on
028 9080 3344.