New York physicians weigh in on Gov. Cuomo’s plan to increase mobile mammography units

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo gave an emotional State of the State speech last month, discussing his girlfriend’s battle against breast cancer and calling for an increase in breast cancer screening throughout the state. Cuomo’s proposal included spending $91 million on screening, with two-thirds of that money going toward purchasing mobile mammography vehicles and equipment.

Now that a little time has passed since that speech, has reported on some of the reactions to Cuomo’s plan from throughout the Syracuse area.

Leslie Kohman, MD, medical director of Upstate University Hospital’s cancer center, said mobile mammography units would be beneficial to patients.

“If people don't have cars, they can't get to screening facilities,” Kohman said, as quoted by “If they don't have anyone to watch their kids, they can't get there. If they're in a low-wage job, they might not be able to get off work.”

Stephen Montgomery, MD, medical director of Crouse Hospital’s Crouse Breast Health Center, said there are more affordable ways to bring screening to patients who may not be able to travel.

“In my opinion, the best thing to do is buy vans and pick up the patient and bring them to a breast center,” Montgomery said, as quoted by “It's less expensive than trying to outfit a van as a mobile mammography service. Or give these underserved, uninsured women a voucher to get these tests done.”

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