Screening for people with a disability
Women with a disability have the same risk of breast cancer as other women. BreastScreen Victoria is committed to helping people with disabilities overcome the barriers to screening.
Most people with a disability can have a breast screen; but, for some, it may not be possible to have a mammogram. You should talk to your doctor about breast screening to decide whether it is right for you.
You can bring someone with you to your breast screen appointment. Service and assistance animals are also welcome.
Are there other options if I cannot have a breast screen?
In some cases, your health condition or disability may prevent the radiographer from being able to position you for a complete breast screen. If you are not able to have a complete breast screen, other tests such as ultrasound or clinical examination may be more appropriate. You should talk about these options with your doctor.
Where can I have a breast screen?
- Most clinics have wheelchair access. Some clinics offer appointments where an extra radiographer is available to assist.
- We can provide longer appointments if you need it. We will ask you about your needs when you book your appointment.
- Our mobile screening service vans visit outer metropolitan and rural areas and have wheelchair lifts.
- Your carer, friend or family member is welcome to come with you to your appointment.
- We can work with local disability services to arrange group bookings and familiarisation visits.
How to book an appointment
• Call 13 20 50 or book online at breastscreen.org.au
• If you use a wheelchair or have other special needs, call 13 20 50, and we will help you find the best clinic for your needs
What if I need help communicating?
We can provide Auslan interpreter services at the appointment. Please let us know if you need an interpreter when you make your appointment.
If you are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment, contact us through the National Relay Service. This is an Australia-wide telephone access service for people who have hearing or speech impairments.
- TTY users phone 13 36 77 then ask for 13 20 50.
- Speak and Listen users phone 1300 555 727 then ask for 13 20 50.
- Internet relay users connect to the National Relay Service then ask for 13 20 50.
What if I have an intellectual disability?
If you have an intellectual disability, we encourage you to discuss breast screening with your doctor before making an appointment. We can work with support persons or legal guardians to organise familiarisation visits and make sure people with intellectual disabilities are supported at screening.
Group bookings and familiarisation visits
BreastScreen Victoria can organise familiarisation visits and group bookings for people with disabilities. Please contact us for more information.
Lisa's Story is a booklet about breast screening designed for people with an intellectual disability. Read and download Lisa's Story.
Video about experience of client with a disability
Women like Tricia, with a disability, are as much at risk of breast cancer as other women. We are committed to helping women with disabilities overcome the barriers to screening.