Dáil Éireann - Volume 425 - 10 February, 1993
Written Answers. - Breast Cancer Screening Programme.
Ms. F. Fitzgerald Ms. F. Fitzgerald
459. Ms. F. Fitzgerald asked the Minister for Health the plans, if any, he has for the introduction of a national screening programme to detect breast cancer in women in view of the reported increase in such cancer among Irish women.
Minister for Health (Mr. Howlin) Brendan Howlin
Minister for Health (Mr. Howlin): Over the last ten year period mortality rates from breast cancer per 100,000 female population has ranged between 32.9 in 1982 to 37.5 in 1991 (provisional figures) with a peak of 39.1 occurring in 1989. The latest figures (1991 provisional) indicate that almost 55 per cent of deaths occurred in the over 65 age group. My Department is supporting a major breast cancer screening programme currently underway at the Mater Foundation. This programme, the Eccles Breast Screening Programme, is one of a network of seven pilot schemes on breast cancer screening in the European Community. The objectives of the screening programme are: to evaluate the impact of mammographic screening on mortality from breast cancer among Irish women; to document compliance with a breast screening programme in Irish women; to compare the specificity, sensitivity and  predictive value of the mammography screening programme with that reported internationally.
The programme is expected to finish its screening towards the end of 1994. This if the first programme of its kind in Ireland and the results of the programme will influence decisions on the national policy to be adopted in this area.
Dáil Éireann 425 Written Answers. Breast Cancer Screening Programme.