One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Thankfully, early detection saves lives. But what about women who can’t afford or don’t have access to screenings?

As Mercy Health continues to evolve to better meet the needs of our patients and community, we are pleased to announce the region’s first mobile mammography unit. The Mercy Health – Toledo Mobile Mammography Van will begin seeing patients in February.

This Mercy Health branded mobile mammography unit is customized for patient convenience and will deliver 3D mammograms to women age 40 and older. It is equipped with the newest 3D technology and offers patients the option of self-compression, meaning the patient will have the ability to control the compression once they are in position. 

The unit will make access to mammography services easier as well as increase capacity. It will offer safe and easy screenings at convenient locations throughout the 21 counties in northwest Ohio.

“Research shows that early detection of breast cancer saves lives and yet, less than 75 percent of eligible women nationwide have received a mammogram within the last two years,” said Dr. Constance Cashen, general surgeon and medical director of the Mercy Health breast program. “Our goal is to make it easy for all eligible women, and men, to access this potentially life-saving technology.”

As a mobile unit, the Mercy Health – Toledo Mobile Mammography Van has the power to break down the barriers of time, access and location, meeting women where they are throughout Mercy Health’s service areas of Toledo, Defiance, Willard, Tiffin and Lima. From city to suburb to rural, breast cancer knows no bounds, and our mobile mammography unit won’t either. Mercy Health will align with partners such as local churches, employers and communities to provide convenient access.

In particular, the mobile mammography van will help support the Mercy Health mission of caring for the poor and underserved as it will help eliminate barriers in accessing mammography services and offer support to those who are underinsured, homeless or have high-deductible plans. In its first year of service alone, the Mercy Health – Toledo Mobile Mammography Van is slated to bring this service to nearly 1,500 women who otherwise may not have had this potentially life-saving test.

“At Mercy Health, our focus remains on enhanced access to care, care that happens outside of the traditional hospital setting,” said Bob Baxter, president of all Mercy Health. “Today, we are excited to bring life-saving and changing mammograms directly to those who seek care, delivering on our promise of bringing health care to our patients when and where it’s needed most.”

The mobile mammography unit is especially important as we continue to encounter battle the COVID-19 pandemic. Those putting off their mammograms will now have another option. There’s no need to sit in a waiting room when visiting the mobile unit, where a skilled, masked technician following CDC guidelines will complete the screening in about 15 minutes. 

For more information or a schedule of locations, call 833-MAMM-VAN.