October 02, 2023
Younger started needed for Māori cancer screening
The Breast Cancer Foundation wants screening for breast cancer in Māori and Pasifika women to start earlier.
All women are eligible for free mammograms once they turn 45, but chief executive Ah-Leen Rayner says this should be 40 for Māori and Pasifika.
She says all the parties are open to extending free screening past 69, but only the Greens, Maori Party and TOP have included earlier screening in their manifestoes for the most high risk groups.
“When you look a specifically Maori and Pasifika women, they are more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer at younger ages, with more aggressive tumours, and so we would like them to start screening from the age of 40 and this is the same as the bowel screening approach where it is a risk-based approach,” Ms Rayner says.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.