The Rose has four coaches that run through Southeast Texas. (Courtesy of La Rose)
According to the Rose Center of Breast Health Excellence, 98% of breast cancers are curable when caught early with regular mammograms. Knowing that early detection plays an important role in patient survival, Dorothy Weston Gibbons and Dixie Melillo established The Rose in 1986 in the Greater Houston area to provide screening, diagnostic and treatment services to any woman, whatever. whatever its ability to pay. Since 1986, The Rose has served nearly 500,000 patients and provides treatment to more than 40,000 women annually, regardless of their insurance coverage.
Make mammograms mobile
In 2006, the organization took another step towards increasing accessibility to screening services by establishing the Rose mobile mammography program.
The Mobile Mammography Program is an opportunity for employers, churches or similar groups to hire a bus to perform regular mammograms for women inside the coach.
Coaches travel to urban and rural communities, including the Woodlands area, and have clients ranging from clinics, schools, federally licensed health centers, food banks, and non-profit organizations.
The mobile mammography coach can also be hired for events. According to The Rose, support comes from various events and organizations such as Memorial Hermann’s In the Pink of Health and The Woodforest Charitable Foundation.
The program was created to facilitate access to regular screenings. According to the organization, the bus goes to more than 41 counties in Southeast Texas and is expected to screen approximately 8,000 patients this year.
Executive Director Jessica Duckworth joined The Rose in 2014 as Director of Imaging and Mobile Services. Duckworth elevated the mobile mammography program and led The Rose to receive recognition as a center of excellence in breast imaging in 2017, according to the organization.
“The mobile program was born out of a need, like everything else at The Rose,” Duckworth said. “About a third of counties in Texas lack mammography services, and Texas has the highest uninsured rate in the country. So without the mobile program, there would be far too many women who would not have access to life-saving testing services. “
Expand the service
Duckworth said the mobile program started in vans that traveled with mammography technology that needed to be removed and brought inside a building. The program originally served seven counties. As of this year, The Rose’s program serves nearly six times as many counties.
The program now consists of three luxury mobile mammography coaches, and The Rose expects a fourth pink coach later this year. Duckworth said the buses have the same equipment, processes and services that patients would receive in physical clinics at The Rose.
Duckworth said The Rose recently conducted a survey of patients in the Mobile Mammography Program. The results of the survey revealed that 65% of mobile patients would not have had their annual mammograms if The Rose had not come to their community and had the opportunity.
“By being able to bring [services] directly to them and they can access that care, we save lives, ”said Duckworth. “The sooner we can find breast cancer, the better their results will be. Early detection is the best prevention.
The Rose Center for Excellence in Breast Health
The Rose Southeast, 12700 N. Featherwood Drive, Ste. 260, Houston
La Rose Galleria, 6575 W. Loop 610, Ste. 275, Bellaire
281-484-4708 • www.therose.org
Breast Cancer FAQs
According to the American Cancer Society, having regular mammograms and detecting breast cancer at an early stage is one of the most important strategies for preventing breast cancer deaths.
What is a mammogram?
Mammograms are low dose x-rays of the breast. Regular mammograms can help detect breast cancer at an early stage, when treatment is most effective, or when the cancer is more likely to be cured.
How often should women have mammograms?
- Women aged 40 to 44 could start screening with a mammogram each year.
- Women 45 to 54 years old should have mammograms every year.
- Women 55 and older can have a mammogram every two years.
- All women should have regular breast self-exams.