A State of the Art Mammography Screening Program on Wheels

La MaestraLa Maestra Community Health Centers has been providing high quality care to residents of for over 20 years. Nearly 150,000 men, women and children in San Diego, CA, living in the most culturally diverse and lowest income communities, depend on La Maestra for care through its many primary care medical clinic sites, which include nine dental clinics, four school-based clinics and an optometry clinic.

The health center also operates a school-based medical and dental clinic at a local high school and a medical clinic an elementary. But what caught our attention is their state-of-the-art mobile mammography and screening program just launched last fall. It’s San Diego’s first mobile mammography coach and one of three operating in the U.S. The coach brings mammograms to where women work, live and even run errands, eliminating the barriers that so often keep women from getting early screenings, such as lack of transportation, childcare or language interpreters.

The mobile mammography unity was especially needed because local doctors in San Diego were seeing more late stage breast cancer diagnoses than doctors elsewhere in the state. Early detection and treatment is critical to surviving the disease.

“La Maestra is responding to the need for breast health in the communities where women work and live,” said John Lethin, Director of Imaging at La Maestra. Three out of five women are not receiving regular, annual screening mammograms.  The most effective and impactful strategy is to take this cutting edge 3D technology into communities so all women have access to this essential care.  La Maestra believes that all women deserve the best.”

It’s also worth noting that La Maestra’s main health center, located in City Heights, is a 34,660 square-foot, three story, environmentally sustainable and LEED Gold certified, the first green Community Health Center in the US, to provide full range of services in a single location.  La Maestra also has a fixed mammography unit in the green building, adding modalities of Full Field Digital X-Ray, Ultrasound, Dexascan and (coming soon) a CT Scan.

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