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The cost of a mammogram in Guyana is conservatively $8000 to $10,000. Guyana is an oil rich country. According to the Government this year expected revenue from oil is almost US$1 billion. Other sources said the revenue could be as high as US$1.4 billion.
Women should not have to choose between having a mammogram, buying food or taking care of other necessities. Mammogram screening should be free throughout Guyana
In 2020, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported Breast Cancer Deaths in Guyana reached 96 or 1.34% of total deaths. According to the report, the death rate is 25.59 per 100,000, placing Guyana at No.23 in the world.
Breast cancer is a public health concern in Guyana.
Globally, the WHO reports that “approximately half of breast cancers develop in women who have no identifiable breast cancer risk factor other than gender (female) and age (over 40 years). Certain factors increase the risk of breast cancer including increasing age, obesity, harmful use of alcohol, family history of breast cancer, history of radiation exposure, reproductive history (such as age that menstrual periods began and age at first pregnancy), tobacco use and postmenopausal hormone therapy.”
Encouraged screening from the Georgetown Public Hospital, as reported by the Department of Public Information, is for persons 50 years and over. But according to the WHO the risk of having the disease starts at over 40 years. Guyana is dangerously lagging behind if persons are encouraged to start screening at over 50 years.
Early screening saves lives. The situation is dire enough to have resources directed at removing all barriers that would cause women to defer or not take the yearly mammogram examination.
Persons seeking help and/or counselling are encouraged to reach out to the Guyana Cancer Foundation on telephone numbers: 592-227-207 | 592 624 3121 | 592-618-2085 – or – by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org