Winthrop Launches Free Breast Cancer Screening Patient Navigation Project

Virginia Maurer, MD, chief of breast surgery and director of the breast health program at Winthrop, consults with a patient.

Winthrop-University Hospital has received funding to expand services for underserved women, regardless of their insurance status, to navigate the healthcare system to complete breast cancer screening. The $75,000 grant is part of the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC) Patient Navigation Project—one of a number of programs that are a part of New York State Governor Cuomo’s statewide initiative to increase breast cancer screening by 10 percent over the next five years.

Winthrop is one of the NAPBC sites in Nassau County that was awarded the grant, which seeks to increase the number of these women who are up-to-date on guideline-concordant breast cancer screenings and increase participation in timely follow-up for women who have positive cancer screenings.

Through the efforts of a dedicated Patient Screening Navigator at Winthrop, women aged 40-64 with average risk, or under 40 and at high risk for breast cancer, will continue to be supported along a continuum of medical care—from patient outreach through screening, diagnosis, and then referral for treatment, if necessary. Those patients in need of further medical care can access all the services they need at the Breast Health Center at Winthrop, through completion of treatment and survivorship. At no cost to patients, Winthrop’s Patient Screening Navigator will help patients, regardless of income or insurance status, secure convenient screening appointments (either at Winthrop’s state-of-the-art Breast Center or another designated facility), by assisting them with overcoming barriers to care such as insurance and transportation issues, and assisting with the coordination of any follow up appointments and/or support services that may be needed.

“Winthrop has long been committed to providing all of the members of our community with the most current breast health care,” said Virginia Maurer, MD, chief of breast surgery and director of the breast health program at Winthrop. “This project will help even more women have access to all of the resources they need when it comes to their breast health—screening/diagnostics, treatment, and support.”

The NAPBC Patient Navigation project began in October 2016 and is being implemented with support from Health Research, Inc. and the New York State Department of Health with the goal of increasing the number of women who are screened for breast cancer over the course of the three-year endeavor and improving the quality of breast cancer screening and diagnostic follow-up by enhancing existing patient navigation services.

Call 516-375-5991 for more information.

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