Women With Severe Health Conditions Screened Less Often for Breast Cancer

A new study by the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital found that women who suffer from severe disabilities and multiple chronic conditions are not screened as frequently for breast cancer as healthier women.

Guilcher’s research was published in the journal Preventive Medicine. The results of the study aligned with previous research stating that individuals who come from low income households and have lower education levels are less likely to receive breast cancer screenings.

According to St. Michael’s Hospital, the study also found that women who have moderate disabilities are still screened more than women with more severe disabilities. Women with moderate disabilities are more likely to come from a household that has higher income, insinuating they head to the doctor more often than women from lower income households that suffer from severe disabilities.

Women with a moderate disability and one chronic condition had the highest rate of breast cancer screenings with 75 percent receiving one. The study found that 61 percent of women with severe disabilities were given a breast cancer screening.

“Women who are at a lower socioeconomic position may be less likely to be assertive and to be strong advocates for their health care management,” Guilcher said in a statement.

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