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Breast screening set to continue in Tenbury Wells
12:16pm Thursday 12th April 2012 in Tenbury Wells
A MOVE to stop mobile breast screening for women in Tenbury has been halted.
Tenbury Area Partnership has resisted a proposal by health chiefs to end visits of a mobile screening unit to Tenbury Hospital.
It had been intended that women who have routine screening should instead be referred to hospital for a mammogram, which would probably involve a journey to Kidderminster or Worcester.
However, it has been decided to continue with the existing system in which a van kitted out with the equipment makes periodic visits to Tenbury Hospital.
Councillor Ken Pollock, who represents Worcestershire County Council on the Area Partnership, said that there was a reason for proposing the change.
“People who use the mobile kit are more likely to get a false positive but this is less likely with the hospital equipment,”
said Coun Pollock.
He believed that some women would prefer the inconvenience of a visit to a hospital-based unit once every three years if the equipment was more accurate.
“I speak as a man but if it was me I would prefer to go to a unit every three years if there was less chance of a false positive,”
He said if a false positive result was obtained, this would mean being referred for further investigation which could be very worrying.
Mobile units are only used for routine screening and if anything of concern is found, the patient will be referred for further investigation at a hospitalbased breast unit.
Changes are also likely to dental services in Tenbury and Burford.
Health chiefs are looking to end a mobile NHS dental service that visits the town three days a week.
Coun Pollock revealed that only 18 people in the town use the service, which does not make it cost-effective.
Therefore, it is likely that people using the mobile service will instead be put onto the books of a local NHS dental surgery.
However, former Tenbury mayor Richard Jones, who has rejoined Tenbury Town Council, urged caution before jumping to conclusions about why usage of the mobile unit is so low.
“A lot of people understand that the mobile unit is for emergency treatment only and this may well be why the number using it is so small,” he said.
Town councillor Joe Watson said that one of the problems is that very few people know about the mobile dentist.