EAST PROVIDENCE – In honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Rhode Island Medical Imaging (RIMI) contributed $10,000 worth of free services to the Rhode Island Department of Health’s Women’s Cancer Screening Program on Wednesday, October 17th.

The donation is designated for women between the ages of 40 and 49 who do not have health insurance to cover the cost of mammograms.

Dr. Richard Noto, president of RIMI, announced the donation of services during a presentation to Gov. Lincoln Chafee in the State Room at the State House. Gov. Chaffee’s father, late U.S. Sen. John Chafee, was instrumental in the establishment of The Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Act of 2000 that allows states to provide medical assistance through their State Medicaid program for women who are screened through the CDC NBCCEDP and diagnosed with a precancerous condition of the breast and/or cervix or a diagnosis of breast or cervical cancer.

Also attending were Ana Novais, head of the Department of Health’s Division of Community, Family Health and Equity which oversees the Women’s Cancer Screening Program, Dr. Martha Mainiero, director of the Anne C. Pappas Center for Breast Imaging at Rhode Island Hospital, Katy Heneghan, Comprehensive Cancer Manager of the Department of Health, Brenda Di Paolo, Administrator, RI Cancer Prevention & Control Program, and Nicholas Oliver, Manager of the Partnership to Reduce Cancer in Rhode Island.

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“The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends that all women age 40 and older have a mammogram every year and continue to do so as long as they are in good health,” Dr. Mainiero said. She added, “Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam by a health care professional at least every three years.”

Dr. Mainiero explained that ACS guidelines increase the likelihood of the early detection of breast cancer, when the disease is most curable.

Dr. Noto pointed out that all RIMI mammograms are read by radiologists with specialized training in breast imaging. RIMI’s team of women’s imaging radiologists are the same doctors who read mammograms at Rhode Island Hospital, Women & Infants Hospital, and The Miriam Hospital.

“RIMI wants to do as much as possible to reduce mortality from breast cancer,” Dr. Noto said. “All of us at Rhode Island Medical Imaging hope the donation of the company’s services makes a difference in the lives of many women and their families.”

“On behalf of the Department of Health and the Women’s Cancer Screening Program, I want to thank Rhode Island Medical Imaging for its generosity,” Gov. Chafee said. “I look forward to the positive impact the contribution of services will have on uninsured women between the ages of 40 and 49 and encourage other companies to follow the example set by Dr. Noto and his colleagues.”

To be eligible for the free RIMI services, women will have to enroll in the state’s cancer screening program, which provides federally-funded services for low-income uninsured women age 50 and above. Gov. Chafee’s father, late U.S. Sen. John Chafee, was instrumental in the establishment and initial funding of the program.

In addition to mammograms, the Women’s Cancer Screening program provides screenings for cervical cancer, according to DiPaolo. Diagnostic services are provided if an abnormality is found in a screening test. If treatment is required for a precancerous condition of the breast or cervix or a diagnosis of breast or cervical cancer, women may be eligible for medical assistance to cover the cost of treatment. For more information about the program, call (401) 222-4324.

About Rhode Island Medical Imaging

Established in 1943, Rhode Island Medical Imaging (RIMI) maintains the highest standards of practice in medical diagnostic imaging. Our network of private facilities is staffed by board certified radiologists, registered technologists, and dedicated office personnel and offers physicians and patients prompt and professional service using state-of-the-art technology. The team of radiologists has broad based experience and subspecialty training in all areas of diagnostic imaging with immediate access to consultations in any medical imaging subspecialty. RIMI radiologists also perform and interpret the full spectrum of imaging examinations at Rhode Island Hospital, Women & Infants Hospital, Hasbro Children’s Hospital and the Miriam Hospital. Those activities are complemented by their academic commitment to The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. RIMI’s goal is to provide every physician and patient with the highest quality in contemporary diagnostic imaging. For more information about Rhode Island Medical Imaging, visit www.rimirad.com.