Women urged to attend breast cancer screening clinics after worrying new figures
Women over 50 are being urged to get screened for breast cancer after new figures revealed many at-risk females are not showing up for appointments.
Targets put on NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde haven't been met for the last seven years, making it the worst performing health board in Scotland for screening uptake.
The health board currently have specialist staff trying to raise awareness in deprived areas which have a particularly poor screening rate.
A spokeswoman said: "We recognised that there has been a decrease in the number of women attending breast screening appointments and we would
urge all women who are invited to consider the opportunity to have a screening test.
"Breast screening is a very important tool in the fight to cut death rates from cancer and a number of steps have been taken to make screening as easy as possible, including sending mobile screening units from the West of Scotland Breast Screening Service into those areas where uptake is at its lowest.
"Communities which have a relatively low uptake of breast screening are also targeted by specialist workers to try to raise awareness when screening units are in the area and encourage women to consider the risks and benefits of breast screening."
Dumbarton MSP Jackie Baillie blasted the figures saying they show the Scottish Government is failing to protect the health of its citizens.
She said: "We know how common breast cancer is in women over 50, and we know that the best chance of beating it is when it's caught early on.
"Not achieving the target is one thing, but to not even meet the minimum acceptable uptake figure is nothing short of shameful.
"My constituency has some of the most deprived areas in Scotland and far more must be done to ensure that women from these communities do not miss out on these vital, lifesaving screenings."
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde has failed to meet a minimum uptake target of 70 percent on three occasions since 2006/07 with the figures also showing the health board has consistently failed to meet the target of 80 percent.
A Scottish Government spokesperson welcomed the news over half a million women across Scotland participated in breast screening but added: "We recognise some boards face greater difficulties.
"That is why we are investing £5million in national cancer screening programmes, including breast, to encourage those who are eligible to take up their invite.
"This funding is targeted towards increasing participation in areas of deprivation and other areas where uptake is lowest.
"More people are surviving cancer than ever before and getting checked early plays a big part."
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