Exciting news: The work has started on free screening for 70-74 - News & Updates • Breast Cancer Foundation NZ

Exciting news: The work has started on free screening for 70-74

Today, we are celebrating a big win to ensure more breast cancer is detected early – the work has finally started on our eight year long campaign to extend free breast screening for Kiwi women aged 70-74.

Health minister Dr Shane Reti announced today that the work has started on the age extension. There’s been lots of discussions with health professionals and the national screening programme to see what is needed to make this a reality.

Currently, free breast screening is available for women aged between 45 and 69. For the last eight years we’ve been pushing for this to change to give our older women who can’t afford private screens the best chance to survive breast cancer.

After hearing Dr Reti’s announcement today, our chair Justine Smyth and the whole team here at Breast Cancer Foundation NZ is feeling excited 

Justine said: “We’ve been asking for the breast screening age to be raised to 74 for the past eight years, so it’s fantastic to see work is finally underway on this. Our thanks go to Dr Reti for championing this both in Opposition and now in Government.

“Our modelling shows that older women who can continue having free mammograms will have a 42% lower risk of dying of breast cancer. We appreciate there’s a lot of preparation needed to get the roll-out underway, and we look forward to hearing more detail as soon as possible.”

There is still a lot of work needed to roll this out, and so we look forward to hearing more details soon.