BreastScreen Victoria is encouraging local women to book their mammogram appointments now to prioritise their health this Christmas.
There has been a sudden decline in women screening at the Sale clinic in recent months.
The program participation rate in the Gippsland South electorate is 61 per cent for women aged between 50 and 69.
While the local screening rate is above the average of 55 per cent, BreastScreen Victoria chief executive Vicki Pridmore said there was room for improvement.
“BreastScreen Victoria aims increase the participation rate to 70 per cent by 2014,” she said.
Women aged 50 to 69 are targeted by BreastScreen Victoria as they are at most benefit from mammographic screening.
Women from the age of 40 and over 69 are also eligible for a free mammogram once every two years.
Regular screening mammograms are the best way to detect breast cancer early, before any symptoms are noticed and when treatment is likely to be most successful.
“Participating in the screening program every two years is important,” Ms Pridmore said.
“The mammogram takes just 10 minutes, offers peace of mind and could even save your life.”
The Sale clinic has screened 1527 women this year.
To make an appointment, phone 13 20 50 or book online at www.breastscreen.org.au