Martin Army Community Hospital modernizes mammography diagnosis capability
The MACH mammogram clinic has moved beyond the uncomfortable days of earlier equipment to a modern technology that offers a faster, and overall better experience. Our new 3-dimensional (3-D) equipment allow us to ensure the best possible service with the most up-to-date equipment. (Photo Credit: John Tongret) VIEW ORIGINAL

Martin Army Community Hospital (MACH) is finding opportunities to modernize our services. Our mammography clinic is no exception.

The MACH mammogram clinic has moved beyond the uncomfortable days of earlier equipment to a modern technology that offers a faster, and overall better experience.

Our new 3-dimensional (3-D) equipment allow us to ensure the best possible service with the most up-to-date equipment.

When providing medical services, “ensuring you have the most up-to-date equipment is one of the most important things”, said Lt. Col. Jason Foerter, Martin Army Community Hospital Physician and Chief of Radiology. “The equipment should be able to give you accurate information for the specific thing you are trying to diagnose”

Throughout the Army, leaders are looking forward to understand the needs of our Soldiers to ensure we can successfully achieve the missions they are asked to complete. Medical care for our Soldiers and dependents are no exception.

"Over the years, mammograms have come a long way from the original analog, to digital, to now tomosynthesis (3-D). With improvements in mammogram technology, we are able to obtain better images which then enables the Radiologists to better identify and treat breast cancer", Foerter said.

As of May 2022, we have two units available to perform 3-D imaging for MACH beneficiaries. This equipment allows for earlier detection of breast cancer.

The new machines show clearer images allowing the BMACH radiology team to be more certain of previously unclear portions of the image. "It (tomosynthesis) both increases the cancer detection rate and decreases the recall rate for our patients. We have better visualization of what needs to be called back," Foerter said.

Many patients say this new equipment creates a better experience because it’s faster and more comfortable. This allows our patients to less apprehensive about scheduling routine mammograms.

"Mammograms should be scheduled once a year starting at age 40. If you have a family history [of breast cancer], it is recommended that you begin having mammograms 10 years before the earliest family member was diagnosed," said Lashaye Hughley, Martin Army Community Hospital Mammogram Supervisor.

MACH beneficiaries can self-refer for a mammogram as long as they have a Primary Care Manager in the DEERS and MHS GENESIS systems.