Breast cancer screenings improve at Franklin Parish hospital

Published: Oct. 21, 2021 at 9:59 AM CDT|Updated: Oct. 21, 2021 at 6:53 PM CDT
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WINNSBORO, La. (KNOE) - One hospital is helping people in rural communities get access to state-of-the-art breast cancer screenings with their new technology.

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women. In 2021, it’s estimated that about 30% of newly diagnosed cancers in women will be breast cancers.

The Franklin Medical Center’s Director of Radiology, Kevin Wiater, says that’s why early detection is important.

“The longer you put it off, the worse it could be if there is anything that is detected,” Wiater said.

The Franklin Medical Center is trying to make screenings more accessible for people in rural areas through its fundraising efforts. They raise money for uninsured or underinsured women to provide them with free mammograms, ultrasounds, and biopsies.

This month, the hospital added a new 3D mammography machine for screenings.

“They have loved it. Number one is because of the comfort level. Number two is because of the ease of use. The time it saves from the older machines, and also some of the manipulations. It’s not as hard to acquire the same images or advanced images compared to our old 2D system,” explains Wiater.

Wiater says the 3D technology allows for better diagnosis, too.

“The GE Pristine has allowed our department to operate in a much more efficient manner. It’s allowed us to acquire faster imaging, which also eases the patient’s comfort, but it also allows us to get more patients through on a daily basis to help serve our greater community. Instead of having to put some exams off or have to manipulate scheduling because of that situation. It’s allowed our radiology department a lot more flexibility to help better serve our community,” Wiater said.

Wiater believes more needs to happen to improve health care. He says it begins with lawmakers because they can help provide the necessary funding to bring new technology and specialty doctors to smaller communities.

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