Campaign for New Mammography Bus

Breast Cancer Awareness Month – New Campaign Launched in Fight Against Breast Cancer

Saskatoon, SK - An estimated 760 Saskatchewan women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2022, and 170 will die from the disease. Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer in women and the second leading cause of their death. 

There is, however, a resource that can help to prevent severe outcomes of breast cancer, improving access throughout the province. 

“The screening mammogram is such an important, and potentially life-saving exam. It checks for breast cancer in women who have no signs or symptoms of the disease, so it is an absolutely critical tool in detecting breast cancer at its earliest stages. When cancer is caught early, there can be more treatment options and better outcomes. We know that early detection saves lives,” said Nora Yeates, CEO of the Cancer Foundation of Saskatchewan. 

However, for Saskatchewan women in rural and remote communities, access to screening mammograms is challenging. Given the vast geography of Saskatchewan and dispersed population, accessing a screening mammogram is more challenging for some women. 

The good news is that the Breast Cancer Screening Bus has been traveling across Saskatchewan since 1990, bringing the exam to rural and remote populations. However, the current bus, purchased in 2002, needs to be replaced. Accessing parts for repairs and maintenance on the 20-year-old vehicle is now challenging, resulting in time off the road and reducing access to potentially life-saving screening mammograms for Saskatchewan women. 

To ensure every woman in Saskatchewan has access to a screening mammogram, the Cancer Foundation of Saskatchewan is committed to raising $2 million to replace the aging bus and its digital mammography equipment. 

“This bus has facilitated more than 250,000 screening mammograms over the past 20 years, and we need to replace it so that it can continue to offer this potentially life-saving exam to thousands more women in the years ahead,” said Yeates.

The Foundation is focused on raising $2 million by March 31, 2023, to enable the replacement and upgrading of the bus. 

“People in Saskatchewan have been very generous to the Cancer Agency over the years, and I want to thank all of our donors past and present for their contributions," said Deb Bulych, Interim President and CEO of the Saskatchewan Cancer Agency. "A new mammography bus will allow us to continue to reach populations in rural and surrounding communities to improve breast cancer outcomes.” 

A new Breast Cancer Screening Bus will address all of the current issues, and will include state-of-theart mammography equipment, enabling it to provide leading edge, potentially life-saving mammography screening services well into the future. 

Background The Screening Program for Breast Cancer provides screening mammograms to Saskatchewan women who: 

  • are 50 years of age or older,

  • do not have symptoms of breast cancer such as lumps, bloody nipple discharge or skin changes, 

  • do not have breast implants, 

  • are not on active follow-up for breast cancer, and, 

  • have been cancer free for five years. 

Screening mammograms are available at permanent Saskatchewan Cancer Agency centres in Regina and Saskatoon, and at satellite centres in Lloydminster, Moose Jaw, North Battleford, Prince Albert, Swift Current and Yorkton. 

The Breast Cancer Screening Bus provides screening services to women in nearly 40 rural and remote communities across Saskatchewan. 

For more information contact: 

Virginia Wilkinson
Cancer Foundation of Saskatchewan
M: 306-530-9862 

Cory Kolt
Saskatchewan Cancer Agency
M: 306-450-6302