The age for free breast cancer screenings in Ontario has been reduced from 50 to 40, according to Health Minister Sylvia Jones. Early diagnosis will be achievable, according to the minister, by lowering the age. The announcement would be made soon, according to the minister, and the province would perform 130,000 additional mammograms per year.
The decision follows a draft proposal issued earlier this year by the US Preventive Services Task Force. Early diagnosis is expected to help prevent mortality. Non-binary, trans, and two-spirit women between the ages of 40 and 70 will be able to self-refer for a mammogram every two years by the end of next year, with the new decision taking effect. Mammograms and MRIs are routinely available for those with a hereditary breast cancer history and those who carry genes that increase the risk of breast cancer (aged 30 to 69). The ministry stated that it will hire new personnel at sites for booking breast cancer screening slots.