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Effectiveness of Decentralized Community-Based Screening, Detection, and Treatment of Breast Cancer in Low-Income, Uninsured Women

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Different systems exist currently in the provision of breast care to low-income, uninsured women. We assessed the efficacy of screening, diagnosis, and treatment of breast cancer in this patient population through a decentralized network of providers. We retrospectively reviewed charts of all patients referred for evaluation and treatment under the Cancer Detection Program: Every Woman Counts (CDP:EWC), the California equivalent of the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Detection and Prevention Program, in a suburban area of Los Angeles County. A total of 972 CDP:EWC screening mammograms was performed in the Antelope Valley during a 7-year study period (2000 to 2007). Sixty-two screened women aged 40 to 64 years were referred for further evaluation. Breast cancer detection rate per screening mammogram was 0.8 per cent; 80 per cent were early-stage breast cancer. The majority of the women (nine of 15) underwent breast conservation surgery. The axilla was staged using sentinel lymph node dissection and/or axillary lymph node dissection. Adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation were administered to all eligible patients. Compliance with published practice guidelines was high. This suggests that a decentralized community-based network of providers may be an effective model to deliver breast care to a low-income, uninsured patient population.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: From the Department of General and Oncologic Surgery, City of Hope, Duarte, California; and the 2: Care-A-Van Mobile Health Clinic, San Fernando, California

Publication date: October 1, 2008

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