Migrant women screening sessions making an impact

Women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds screen for breast cancer less often than the general population. Increasing engagement and breast screening participation rates among under-screened populations is a key goal for BreastScreen Victoria.

In 2021, we’re proud to be continuing our partnership with AMES (Adult Multicultural Engagement Service) to improve access to our service for newly-arrived migrants.

Mina and her auntie Nagham (pictured above) attended a group booking at our Broadmeadows clinic on Thursday, 14 January. Nagham, along with eight other AMES clients screened with the support of an Arabic-speaking bilingual educator who was able to explain the screening process in language and ensured and ask our screening staff questions on behalf of the women.

“Newly-arrived migrant women can face language and cultural barriers to screening and often have lower screening participation rates. This can lead to more advanced breast cancer diagnosis and poorer treatment outcomes,” said Senior Health Promotion Officer Lisa Joyce.

“The sessions with AMES allow newly-arrived migrant women to screen with the support of other women in their community, and with access to translated information. We hope it will build their confidence to continue screening in the future.”

Equipped with training and resources from BreastScreen, AMES case managers are able to talk to their clients about our program, invite them to screen, help them to book an appointment and organise group bookings at screening clinics.

Our special thanks to the wonderful staff at AMES for their ongoing involvement in this important project, and most importantly in supporting better breast health outcomes for many migrant women.

We look forward to seeing Nagham and our other clients in two years!