Jarman MP, Bowling JM, Dickens P, Luken K, Yankaskas BC. Womens Health Issues. 2012 Sep;22(5):e421-8. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2012.06.002. Epub 2012 Jul 17.
Prior research has described general barriers to breast cancer screening for women with disabilities (WWD). We explored specific accommodations described as necessary by WWD who have accessed screening services, and the presence of such accommodations in community-based screening programs.
We surveyed WWD in the Carolina Mammography Registry to determine what accommodations were needed when accessing breast screening services, and whether or not these needs were met. The sample of 1,348 WWD was identified through a survey of limitations, with a response rate of 45.5% (4,498/9,885). Of the 1,348 WWD eligible for the second survey, 739 responded for a response rate of 54.8%.
The most frequently needed accommodations were an accessible changing area with a bench (60.0%), oral description of the procedure by the technologist (60.5%), and handicapped/accessible parking (27.6%). Handicapped parking was the need most likely to go unmet (3.1%).
Most needs are being met by radiology facilities and staff, and the few needs going unmet are related to the physical/built environment. Overall, for WWD who are in screening, the mammography system seems to be more accessible than generally perceived.