Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre introduces new breast cancer screening, technology and on-site radiologist, Dr. Paul J. Risk.
Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre continues to be at the forefront of cancer care, providing the latest in breast cancer screening technology. After being the first facility in Bermuda to offer digital mammography in 2008, and the first 3D technology in 2017, the Centre has once again upgraded equipment to provide the women of Bermuda with the latest in mammography technology. Initially delayed due to COVID-19, the Centre’s new Senographe Pristina™ with Dueta™ from GE Healthcare was installed in 2019, providing patients with next-generation 3D digital mammography technology.
“At Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre, we are committed to bringing screening and diagnostic technology to more women,” says Lynne Woolridge, CEO of Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre. “We know that there are two key reasons women put off getting mammograms, fear of pain and not being able to afford the exam. We design our schedule to provide women the time they need to be comfortable and not feel rushed, and our compassionate technologist team are highly experienced and are available to answer questions and walk patients through what to expect which lowers women’s anxiety.
“Not being able to afford a mammogram does not need to prevent women from being screened annually,” continues Woolridge. “For women without health insurance and who are not able to afford the exam, the Centre’s Equal Access Fund will cover the cost, so no woman goes without. We hope that as we continue to provide the latest technology and remove the cost barrier, Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre will help more women get a screening exam and find cancer early when it is most treatable.”
“The Senographe Pristina™ with Dueta™ offers patients a more comfortable mammography experience with gentle, rounded corners, comfortable armrests and the ability to compress the system themselves,” says Rona Donawa, chief technologist at Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre. “Our goal is for all our baseline patients to have their mammograms with this new technology with the intent that it will help to dismiss any preconceived fears and encourage more compliance with annual screening.”
Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre is pleased to announce the reintroduction of an on-site radiologist. Starting in early September, Dr Paul J. Risk will join the Centre’s diagnostic imaging department. As a radiologist, Dr Risk is a medical doctor who specialises in diagnosing and diseases using medical imaging techniques, in the Centre’s case mammography, ultrasound and bone densitometry. Born and raised in Nova Scotia, Dr Risk graduated from Dalhousie University Medical School in 1988, after which he worked as a general practitioner for four years. He returned to school for postgraduate training in diagnostic radiology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, and completed his four-year residency programme in 1997 before being admitted as a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (FRCPC) with a specialist certificate in diagnostic radiology.
Subsequently, Dr Risk worked as a general radiologist at St. Martha’s Hospital in Nova Scotia. After five years in practice there, he joined a large group of radiologists in Calgary, Alberta, where he has worked since 2002. Within this very busy hospital and community clinic-based practice he helped foster and develop a small, dedicated breast imaging and intervention focused group of radiologists with a subspecialty interest in the field of diagnostic imaging. During the past 19 years he has played an integral role as part of this group providing the vast majority of breast imaging and breast biopsies for the greater Calgary area and beyond.
For Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre, having an on-site radiologist is about raising the level of patient care offered in the diagnostic imaging department, especially for breast health, providing patients who have been called back for diagnostic appointments, and their physicians, with the opportunity to ask questions and better understand the imaging results. This can go a long way towards approaching any diagnosis with clarity. With an on-site radiologist, diagnostic images can be reviewed in a much shorter time frame instead of results taking days or, in some cases, weeks.
The Centre currently has multiple digital breast tomosynthesis (3D) mammography machines, delivering superior screening and diagnostic accuracy at the same low dose as the older 2D mammography exam. Lumps or abnormalities in the breast are often found with mammography or other imaging studies. But it’s not always possible to tell from these imaging tests whether a growth is benign or cancerous. The Centre provides both stereotactic and ultrasound guided breast biopsies, minimally invasive procedures, to remove some cells from a suspicious area in the breast to be sent to a pathology lab to determine a diagnosis.
Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre has a long history being the leading mammography provider in Bermuda. It was the first facility to provide digital mammography to Bermuda and continues to ensure that the Centre meets international operating standards. The Centre’s mammography units were first accredited by the Canadian Association of Radiologists in 1999, making the Centre the first facility outside of North America to receive this distinction. In the past decade the Centre has earned gold accreditation in mammography from the American College of Radiology (ACR), and the Centre’s diagnostic imaging department was designated a breast imaging centre of excellence by the American College of Radiology (ACR) encompassing accreditation in digital mammography, stereotactic breast biopsy and breast ultrasound.
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Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre is a registered charity engaged in the prevention, detection, treatment and support of cancer and other health concerns in the local community.
46 Point Finger Road, Paget, 236-1001 www.cancer.bm