Breast cancer screening bill pulled from ballot - News & Updates • Breast Cancer Foundation NZ

Breast cancer screening bill pulled from ballot

Today Dr Shane Reti, the National Party's health spokesperson, had his private member's bill to increase the breast screening age to 74 drawn from the ballot box. That means it will now get debated by MPs in Parliament, taking us one step closer to our older women being able to access free mammograms.

Justine Smyth, Chair of Breast Cancer Foundation NZ, says: "We're thrilled to finally see some movement on raising the mammogram eligibility age to 74 – a move that will help save the lives of New Zealand women. Extending the breast screening eligibility is something we’ve been advocating for these past six years.

"The current age limit of 69 is outdated, puts us out of step with countries like Australia, the UK and Canada and ultimately it costs women’s lives. When health officials and two different Select Committees have already accepted the evidence that screening to 74 will save lives, it's outrageous the Government has stalled for so long.

"We're hoping Dr Reti’s Member’s Bill will now get widespread parliamentary support and that the next Government passes this into law as soon as possible. Our older women deserve the best chance to survive breast cancer, and that requires an early diagnosis through a mammogram."