A new integrated breast health clinic staffed entirely by female specialists has opened in Miranda in the lead up to Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
It is only the second such clinic in the world and the first to be staffed entirely by females.
The new clinic was set up by Professor Anand Deva, medical director of Integrated Specialist Health Care - which runs three not-for-profit clinics, including the one in Miranda.
Professor Deva is a plastic, reconstructive and hand surgeon with a special interest in breast cancer.
He said the new clinic operated on the same principle as the Integrated Specialist Health Care model - to provide an affordable, accessible treatment for women to make sure they can be treated quickly, and under the same roof.
The new service was developed in partnership with the state government and offered a unique, rapid-access model to reduce waiting times and anxiety, and provide affordable treatment for breast cancer patients.
"The integrated model allows for patients to undergo imaging and access a surgeon, if required," Professor Deva said.
"The aim is for women to be treated quickly and, most critically, affordably.
"The team at Miranda is all female - GPs, breast care nurses, breast physicians and breast surgeons. It is operated by women, for women."
He said a patient at the clinic would first see a GP who had been specially trained to give breast exams. If needed, they would then be referred for screening and on to a breast surgeon, who they would see within days. The team also includes plastic surgeons trained in breast reconstructions.
Professor Deva said the aim was to "close the loop" and reduce anxiety for women by having all the specialists under one roof.
He had also been able to secure an arrangement with I-MED, which is located in the same buidling, to perform lower cost medical imaging on patients referred from the clinic.
Figures show more than 18,000 Australians are diagnosed with breast cancer each year.
If the diagnosis is made early, more than 80 per cent will have a good outcome.
With one in eight Australian women developing breast cancer in their lifetime, regular surveillance and early detection are considered the keys to a good outcome.
The clinic is open to anyone, whether they have noticed a lump or change in their breast tissue or just want to have a check-up. No referral is needed.
Anyone who has a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, has a breast lump, is experiencing breast pain or nipple change or discharge, or any other symptoms in the breast area, or is aged over 40, is urged to book in for a check-up.
The clinic provides same-day diagnostic services, with patients able to review their initial test results with a clinician before leaving the clinic. If suspicious, or urgent, results can be given within a week.
If there is a problem detected, a fast-track referral can be made to one of the clinic's breast surgeons if required.
He said having all physicians, surgeons and radiologists under the one roof meant "everything happens automatically" and the multi-disciplinary team are able to work together to come up with the best approach for patients.
Details: Phone 9525 2340 or click here.