Photo (left to right): Sharon Keenan, a patient who shared her story with guests; Robert Biron, STEGH’s President & CEO; Yolanda Mundt, Manager of Digital Imaging at STEGH; Cathy Crane, Chair, STEGH’s Board of Directors, Brenda Fleming, Director, South West Regional Cancer Program; and Kathy Cook Noble, Chair, STEGH Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Thanks to the generosity of donors in St. Thomas and Elgin County, the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital (STEGH) and the STEGH Foundation have made another important transformation in patient care, with a recent investment in mammography to support women (and men) in our lives.

The St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital has made renovations to house a second mammography unit, and yesterday, our health care partners, donors, and colleagues came together to celebrate the opening of the new mammography suite.

Live stream of the grand opening of the new mammography unit.

STEGH’s current Mammography Unit has made an impact for our patients, with more than 6,700 mammograms performed last year. The unit has high quality 2D & 3D imaging capabilities, allowing clinicians to capture multiple images, allowing for increased diagnostic accuracy.

“The impact of STEGH’s mammography program has been instrumental in the early detection of breast cancer. The imaging technology has improved substantially over the years, giving women more confidence, faster results and the care they need to overcome a positive diagnosis,” explains Yolanda Mundt, Manager of Diagnostic Imaging. “With the acquisition of a second mammography unit, STEGH will be able to accommodate an increase in patient visits for many years. This is our promise to the women (and men) of Elgin County and St. Thomas.”

With anticipated growth in patient volumes for this life-saving screening, this second mammography unit has a new tool contrast mammography, which will allow clinicians to accurately diagnose the extent of the cancer. The impact for patients is significant, as it is a tool to help make sure that dense tissue is not hiding a tumour.

Approximately one in eight Canadian women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. With the improvements with screening, and advances in Digital Imaging, especially Mammography, mortality rates have been cut by 42% since 1986.

STEGH is an accredited Mammography Centre with the Canadian Association of Radiologists, and an official Ontario Breast Screening Program (OBSP) with Cancer Care Ontario. The goal of the OBSP program is to find breast cancers when they are small, less likely to have spread and more likely to be treated successfully.

Given the demand for screening services in Elgin County, OUR Hospital requires the equipment and tools to respond to our patients’ health care needs; this includes the purchase of a second Mammography Unit. This unit will allow STEGH to accommodate growth over the next ten years in our community, and will enable us to balance demand for a long time.

“Our community has placed great importance on women’s health through supporting the mammography unit,” explains Paul Jenkins, Executive Director. “Early detection and screening has made a huge impact on the lives of local women. The STEGH Foundation is proud to support this important investment in the future of the Breast Screening Program at STEGH.”

Our donors are committed community partners, and this gift will help us equip OUR Hospital with the right equipment, tools and space needed to support our patients’ healthcare.

The St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital Foundation continues to work with our community partners to raise funds for patient care equipment and infrastructure projects. Everything from monitors and beds, to equipment for procedures, as well as improvements to the clinical spaces needed to provide care, supporting OUR Hospital is our top priority, and working with donors and community partners, helps us succeed in carrying out our mission.