Nearly 300 women screened since September in the Joanie Abdu Mob - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Nearly 300 women screened since September in the Joanie Abdu Mobile Mammography Unit

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YOUNGSTOWN (AP) -

Early detection is the key to battling breast cancer.  However, studies show more than 40% of women skip their yearly mammograms.  Mercy Health hopes to change that statistic with its new mobile mammography unit.

"We go out three days a week.  So, we've had a lot more people coming on board than we initially expected, which is great," said Juli Dulay with Akron Children's Hospital.

The van made its maiden voyage back in September.  Since then, it's screened 275 women, some of whom had had positive test results.

"We've had a number of women over 50 that have had their first mammograms on the van.  We've had women that have told us it has been 10 years since they had a mammograms," said Dulay.

The van offers 3D mammograms in just 15 minutes.  The 3D technology is proven to detect 41% more invasive breast cancers.

"So, with us going into the community, we really hope to improve that screening rate and to really chance the mortality rates and statistics associated with breast cancer," said Dulay.

Joanie's Promise will help cover the cost of mammograms that are performed on board for women who are underinsured or uninsured.  The Joanie Abdu Mobile mammography unit has scheduled stops throughout the Valley in November.

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