Otago and Southland breast screening services to be provided locally

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Tenders are being sought for breast screening services in Otago and Southland.
Otago and Southland breast screening and assessment services are to be provided locally, following a decision by the Southern District Health Board (DHB) not to seek renewal of its contract with the National Screening Unit (NSU).

A request for tenders for breast screening services for the Otago and Southland region is currently on the Government Electronic Tenders Service (GETS) website, with a closing date of 22 November, 2013.

Jill Lane, Director National Services Purchasing, National Health Board in the Ministry of Health, says the open tender process will identify a provider who is capable of meeting BreastScreen Aotearoa requirements for a high quality, sustainable breast screening service.  

She says the NSU has for some time, been working closely with the DHB to help address some of the challenges facing the breast screening service and will continue to work with the team in Southern DHB to ensure that there is a smooth transition of services to a new provider.  

“One of the key challenges for the service has been the difficulty in recruiting specialist staff to a small breast screening unit. To ensure the quality, reliability and sustainability of the service, the radiology team in BreastScreen Counties Manukau has been supporting the service, but this was an interim arrangement.  

“Services will be transitioned to a new provider later next year and eligible women in Otago and Southland will continue to have local access to free breast screening services that are safe and reliable.”

Jill Lane says the Ministry supports the DHB’s decision and looks forward to working with the team to transition these important services to a new provider.

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Page last updated: 30 October 2013