Borough breast screening hit by flooded unit

The mobile breast screening unit
The mobile breast screening unit
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A mobile breast screening unit and specialist equipment has been damaged in a flood.

A leak in the water supply, caused by the very cold weather, flooded the unit and meant it could not be used.

It is not yet known how long it will be out of service and staff at Wrightington, Wigan And Leigh NHS Foundation Trust are contacting patients to rearrange appointments.

The unit moves around Wigan and South Lancashire so breast screening can be carried out and was based at Leigh Infirmary at the time.

Sheena Hilton, programme manager and superintendent radiographer for the unit, said: “Due to the recent extreme cold weather, a leak has occurred in the water supply to the breast screening mobile unit sited at Leigh Infirmary, causing flooding throughout the unit.

“Engineers are currently assessing the damage to the unit including the mammography equipment and any patients due to attend breast screening appointments this week are advised to await further instruction. All appointments are currently being rescheduled for the same site and all affected women will receive a new appointment through the post.

“It is unknown at this stage how long the unit will be out of action for, although we are hoping to be operational again by later next week.

“Although the unit visits several sites across Wigan and South Lancashire, it is due to remain at Leigh until August 2018.

“Should you have any concerns about breast screening appointments at Leigh Infirmary, please contact 01942 774713.”

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women in the borough, but also one of the most treatable, particularly when detected early.

Free NHS breast screening aims to detect tumours at a very early stage and all local women aged between 50 and 70 are invited to be screened every three years.

Screening is provided using modern equipment at the Thomas Linacre Centre in Wigan and in three mobile screening units.