Breast Screening DHB quarterly reports

Coverage is an important performance indicator for all those involved in BreastScreen Aotearoa at both regional and national levels.

Background

BreastScreen Aotearoa (BSA) is a national screening programme funded by the Government to offer free mammography every two years to women aged 45–69 years of age. The aim of BSA is to reduce morbidity and mortality from breast cancer by the early detection and treatment of the disease.

Improving uptake of the breast cancer screening programme by Māori and Pacific women is a key priority of the National Screening Unit (NSU) as part of its commitment to achieving equity. Coverage rates are monitored closely for these two groups.

Breast screening coverage

Coverage is an important performance indicator for all those involved in BreastScreen Aotearoa at both regional and national levels.

Initial rescreen

Women who screen regularly have a lower risk of dying from breast cancer than those who screen less regularly.

Definition & statistical methods

Coverage is defined as the proportion of women eligible for screening who have been screened in the previous two-year period. The number of women eligible is derived from Statistics NZ Census base populations at the midpoint of the two-year screening period.

Screened women are included in the coverage calculations based on their age at the time of their screen. This means that coverage for women aged 50–69 years includes women who may have turned 70 or 71 during the monitoring period.

Rescreening rates are calculated as the number of women rescreened within 20-27 months of their previous screen as a percentage of the number of women eligible for a rescreen. Where a woman has more than one screening episode recorded in a screening period, only the last episode is reported. This may result in variances when a woman’s screen and rescreen is completed by different providers.

BSA monitor initial and subsequent screening rates as there are different patterns or rescreening between these two groups. Initial rescreens are the proportion of women who have a screening mammogram within 20-27 months after their first screen.  Subsequent rescreens are related to women who have already returned for at least one rescreen.

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Page last updated: 11 March 2019