Area Bahía de Cadiz-La Janda is working on a pilot program for cervical screening. that the Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs plans to extend to the whole of Andalusia in July on women from 25 to 65 years old.
For this purpose, the La Laguna Medical Center in the capital Cadiz has been selected, which will work in coordination with the population screening unit, composed of doctors of pathology and microbiology of the San Carlos Hospital in San Fernando. In its turn, The target group of this pilot project in Cadiz consists of 279 women.
This measure is part of the Andalusian Cancer Strategy, in which the Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs has invested a total of 50,257,487.34 euros in prevention, promotion and early diagnosis activities; cancer treatment in adults, children and adolescents; humanization of medical care for cancer patients, as well as updating the computer application corresponding to the Cancer Population Register in Andalusia, as provided for in the Strategy.
This strategy, which brought together more than 45 experts from different specialties such as oncology, radiation oncology, hematology, pediatrics, pathology, primary health care, nurses and patient associations from all over Andalusia, was created with the intention of making cancer treatment carried out in a structured manner way and from a comprehensive point of view, since cancer in Andalusia is the first cause of death in men and the second in women and is responsible for more than 17,000 deaths annually, with lung cancer being the main cause of death. .
Cancer accounts for 25% of global mortality. As in Spain as a whole, the most frequently diagnosed tumors in 2023 were the rectum, breast, lung, prostate and bladder. However, a high percentage of cases are preventable, making it possible to reduce and control cancer risk by applying evidence-based strategies.
Along with anti-smoking and health promotion campaigns, the Department of Health and Consumer Affairs is promoting existing screening programs (colon and breast) and will take a new step to expand cervical cancer screening, which is currently in pilot mode. in Cadiz.
Breast Cancer Early Detection Program
Breast cancer, the most common malignant tumor among Andalusian women, is currently not preventable, but it is possible to detect the disease in its early stages, when it has not yet shown symptoms, and with appropriate treatment and an improved prognosis, which implies an increase in survival. Early detection in most cases allows for more conservative and less crippling surgical intervention. In particular, more than 70% of women who have undergone tumor removal surgery are now able to preserve their breasts, whereas at the start of the early detection program, conservative surgery was performed in only 20% of cases.
On April 25, 2023, the procedure began expanding the target population of the Breast Cancer Early Detection Program to include new age groups with women aged 70 and 71 years. The current target population therefore ranges from 50 to 71 years of age, with plans to reach women aged 47 to 49 years in the coming months. In the province of Cadiz, 52,734 mammograms were performed in 2021, with 143 tumors detected; In 2022, 58,449 tests were performed and 127 tumors were identified; and in 2023, 62,189 mammograms, which detected 252 tumors.
The Andalusian Health Service is promoting the improvement of diagnostic devices by purchasing 36 new tomosynthesis mammographs, of which 32 will replace older mammographs currently in use and four will be placed in new locations. In the province of Cadiz, it is planned to update 9 devices of this type. This is an investment aimed at creating an infrastructure for the early detection of breast cancer in women under 50 years of age in the Autonomous Community. This is the first time such a plan has been implemented in Andalusia. These new mammographs will allow 45,500 additional tests to be performed than are already being performed.
The Breast Cancer Early Detection Program currently operates 72 mammography machines: 28 hospital-based primary care screening mammography machines, 37 hospital-based mammography machines (located in regional and high-definition hospitals), and seven mobile mammography machines.