Reading Hospital Foundation will put a mobile mammography vehicle on the road this summer after reaching its $2 million fundraising goal to buy the vehicle.
The fundraising campaign, which included donations, pledges, grants from 129 organizations and individuals and the Pennsylvania Neighborhood Assistance Program tax credit program, started Aug. 1, 2020, ended Nov.15. The vehicle is expected to be delivered this spring with the first screenings expected to begin in the summer.
The mobile mammography program removes transportation barriers by bringing screening services to patients. Outfitted with the latest technology, including 3D tomosynthesis, the vehicle uses a digital mammography screening tool that improves accuracy and reduces the need for follow-up visits. It also enables caregivers to detect more invasive cancers.
The mobile unit can conduct up to 4,000 screenings a year, but hospital officials anticipate it will take some time to build awareness of the service in the community.
“Our team is excited to offer screenings at various locations throughout the county,” said P. Sue Perrotty, Tower Health president and CEO. “Our goal is to serve a diverse group of patients in locations that are familiar and convenient so we can ensure that any woman who needs a mammogram has convenient access to this life-saving screening.”
“The philanthropic response from the local organizations, community members, hospital employees, and Reading Hospital Foundation Board of Directors was remarkable,” said Katherine Thornton, president, Reading Hospital Foundation. “Despite the many challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, our community stepped forward to ensure that underserved women have access to screening. Every donation, regardless of the amount, made a significant impact in our ability to fulfill our mission.”
Donations are still being accepted to support the Mobile Mammography program. Additional donations will be used to support the Patient Assistance Fund and ensure that women who are uninsured or underinsured can receive this routine screening without worry about access or cost. Individuals interested in donating can visit towerhealth.org/RHFoundation, click “Make a Gift,” and select “Mobile Mammography Coach” for the Gift Purpose drop down menu.