KUALA LUMPUR: Thirteen clinics throughout the country will be providing mammogram tests for breast cancer with government subsidies of RM50 per check-up.
Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil said the clinics were part of the first phase of the subsidised mammogram test programme.
She hoped to see at least one clinic in every state constituency by phase three of the programme.
She said the National Cancer Society estimated in 2003 that one in every 19 women was at risk of getting breast cancer and there were 46.2 breast cancer cases in every 100,000 women, she said.
“This shows that our women do not know much about breast cancer and mammogram tests.
“We are worried that some women may not be able to afford the test,” said Shahrizat, adding that each mammogram test costs at least RM90.
Those who qualify for the subsidy must be between 40 and 69 years old and have a monthly income of RM5,000 and below.
Shahrizat was speaking to reporters after launching the subsidised mammogram test programme at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre here yesterday in conjunction with the ministry’s celebration of Mother’s Day.
Besides giving out free mammogram test certificates to 10 selected women, the ministry also made it into the Malaysia Book of Records with the most number of women (2,389) taking part in the mammogram test in a day.
On Sunday Star’s front page report about unscrupulous charity organisations using third parties to solicit funds, Shahrizat said her ministry was keeping a close watch on these organisations.