Planned Parenthood Offers FREE Clinical Breast Exams in October

During October, Planned Parenthood in Salida will be offering free breast exams in honor of Breast Health Month. The health center has several programs to ensure that patients can access breast care services regardless of their age or ability to pay.

1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime, and while breast cancer in men is rare, over 2,000 men will be diagnosed each year. Early detection of breast cancer through breast self exams, clinical breast exams, and mammograms is critical to survival, and more than 33 million breast cancer survivors are alive in United States today.

“We know that there are several barriers to getting adequate breast screening and care,” said Shelley Schreiner, Health Center Manager of the Salida Planned Parenthood. “In our area we know that cost, transportation, and confusion about guidelines are all contributing factors to patients not getting the breast care they need.”

There are a lot of different recommendations about breast cancer screenings from different organizations. Planned Parenthood recommends that women start getting clinical breast exams every 1-3 years starting at age 25 and continuing every year after they start getting mammograms, usually at age 40. Women should also do a breast self exam every month.

While screenings for breast cancer are not recommended for males, it is important for men to know that breast cancer does occur in males and be aware of any changes in their breast tissue that could indicate cancer – typically lumps. If males are experiencing any changes in their breast tissue, they should consult a health care provider.

The Women’s Wellness Connection is one program that is offered at the Planned Parenthood health center that pays for breast cancer screenings for women age 40 and over who are uninsured or underinsured. The health center also offers financial assistance programs for women under 40. Patients who are interested in a free clinical breast exam should call the health center at 719-539-7291 or go online at www.plannedparenthood.org to schedule an appointment. Walk-ins are also welcome at the health center. The hours of operation are Mondays 11 AM – 6 PM, Tuesdays 9 AM – 3 PM, and Fridays 10 AM – 5 PM. The health center is located at 233 E 2nd St. in Salida.

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