Get Healthy Carson City: Mammograms a great tool in the fight against breast cancer

This column appears in the Nevada Appeal Wednesday health pages. It addresses topics related to the health of our community.

It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Carson City Health and Human Services is pleased to partner with other healthcare agencies across the country to promote the importance of early detection and screening to help prevent breast cancer deaths. With early detection and modern treatment, survival rates from breast cancer are good. Cancer is most treatable when it’s found early. Clinical breast exams and mammograms can detect cancer and improve the chances of beating the disease.

Learn about your risk for breast cancer and other cancers by talking to your family about your family health history. Also, talk with your healthcare provider about your personal breast cancer risk factors. Carson City Health and Human Services encourages all women to have an annual clinical breast exam and discuss with your healthcare provider whether a mammogram is appropriate for you. Different professional organizations have differing recommendations about when the time is right to start having mammograms. Carson City Health and Human Services follows the recommendations of the U.S. Preventive Task Force, which recommends bi-annual mammograms for women over age 50, if no other risk factors are present. Your physician can talk to you about your family history and other risk factors to determine when a mammogram is right for you.

Carson City Health and Human Services (CCHHS) provides affordable Well Woman Exams in both of our clinics that include a clinical breast exam. For uninsured or underinsured women over 50, CCHHS cooperates with partners, including Women’s Health Connection, to link women with screening and follow-up care, including assistance paying for mammograms. If additional care is needed following a clinical breast exam, Soroptomist International of Carson City has a fund to help defray the cost of mammograms, ultrasounds, and biopsies for women of any age.

To help provide access for women throughout Nevada, the Mammovan travels across the state and provides mammograms by appointment. Mammovan will be back in Northern Nevada Thursday, October 6, and will remain in our region, with appointments in Carson City, Reno, Stateline and Storey County, through Oct. 17. Visit to see a schedule of where the Mammovan will be near you. Call 877-581-6266 to make an appointment and see if you qualify for a free or reduced-cost mammogram.

Learn more about breast cancer at For information on Health Department services, check out our website at or like us on Facebook at


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