Skip to content
Community, Medical Health Aged Care

BCNA calls for diagnostic mammography services in Tasmania

Embargoed 5am Monday 26 February 2024?? 2 mins read
BCNA's Director of Policy, Advocacy & Support Services Vicki Durston will be in Hobart early this week advocating for improvement in access to public mammography services.

Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) remains “deeply concerned” about the lack of access to diagnostic imaging in the public system in the south of Tasmania.  

In an open letter, BCNA – Australia's leading voice for Australians affected by breast cancer – is calling on all candidates contesting the 2024 state election to commit to fixing the problem and restoring basic rights to healthcare for all Tasmanian women.  

“Despite some progress towards a long-term solution, the problem persists today, and BCNA continues to hear worrying stories of women who have a breast cancer symptom and have nowhere to go,” BCNA’s Director of Policy, Advocacy & Support Services Vicki Durston says. 

This mammography service is vital in ensuring the timely diagnosis of women who present to their GP with symptoms of breast cancer and differs from BreastScreen Tasmania, which is for the population screening of women with no signs of breast cancer and is fully operational.  

Speaking in Hobart, where she is meeting with politicians on all sides about restoring basic healthcare rights for women in southern Tasmania, Ms Durston said breast cancer cannot wait. 

“It is totally unacceptable that women in this position have to travel as far as Melbourne for these crucial tests,” she said. 

In 2018, $3 million in Federal Government funding was allocated to Tasmania - off the back of BCNA’s advocacy – to kick-start a commitment to improve access to public mammography services.  

Ms Durston said that despite evidence of the Tasmanian Government starting to address this issue, the service is still extremely limited, with significant wait times, and GPs are still unable to refer patients to these services.  

“For six years, we have been highlighting the significant and consequential delays in diagnosing symptomatic women with breast cancer due to the lack of public imaging services across the state,” Ms Durston said.  

“For six years, we have been calling for action, and six years later, access to diagnostic mammography imaging in the public health system for southern Tasmania is still not good enough. 

“Women are still calling our Helpline and contacting the media, saying they have nowhere to go.”  

Ms Durston said that in the short term, BCNA is calling for solutions, including emergency travel subsidies and partnerships with private clinics so women in southern Tasmania can get the urgent tests they need now. 

Key Facts:

BCNA staff will be in Hobart on Monday 26 and Tuesday 27 February, if you require comments or interviews please reach out to our media team who are able to coordinate this for you.

About us:

Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) is Australia’s leading breast cancer consumer organisation. BCNA provides information and support to those diagnosed and their supporters, opportunities to connect with others going through a similar situation and work to influence a stronger healthcare system to ensure all Australians affected by breast cancer receive the very best care, treatment, and support.   

Contact details:

Anna Malbon 

Communications Specialist  

0498 999 477



Media Outreach made fast, easy, simple.

Feature your press release on Medianet's News Hub every time you distribute with Medianet. Pay per release or save with a subscription.