I was honoured to be invited to speak to the Bariatric Technical Advisory Group (BAR TAG) for the US Department of Veterans’ Affairs
The VA has learned that there are many plus-size women who have served in the US military and now are at great risk for breast cancer because of exposures while serving.
We had a wide ranging discussion about the barriers to accessing Mammography when the patient is bariatric. The challenges are very real, but they start far outside the Mammography Clinic.
The real-life experience of a plus-size woman who is having a mammogram include access to the building, seating, bathrooms, and the actual X ray machine itself. Other factors include using the right language to invite the patient and the positive and non-discriminatory attitude of the professional staff.
The Technical Advisory Group are an amazing group, and as previously they had searching questions to ask, and insightful comments to make.
Overall the feedback was very positive so I hope the group are able to recommend improvements that will help bring about better care for the Veterans of the US Military.
Thank you for the invitation and the warm welcome. Thank you too to Dr Susan Gallagher of The Celebration Institute who hosted the session.