LAKE GROVE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A Long Island mall is taking part in a trend to make health care more convenient.

It’s believed to be the first in the area to offer mammograms.

As CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan reported, inside the Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove, between the Sears and the Cinnabon, shoppers can find a discrete clinic with water, coffee, a waiting room, even mood music.

“So I could go shopping and then you’ll alert me when it’s time for the mammography?” she asked the staff, who replied, “Yup.”

The whole thing will take about 15 minutes.

Insurance is accepted, and the uninsured pay $45 for the potentially life-saving exam.

The goal is convenience.

“We figured this was the best way to capture women, because people are in a mall, they’re shopping,” said Felicia Telep, of Pure Mammography.

Breast screening is one of the major medical advances of the past 50 years, but only about 50 percent of women do it.

“I had a prescription for like a year and a half ago, and I never went. Now, I probably will definitely go, leave my child with my friend and go do it,” said Jane Boyles, of Stony Brook.

“Especially for mothers on the go that don’t have the time to go to a doctor’s office,” said Erica Ferrara.

“We need to get out there and make it one-stop shopping,” said Geri Barash, of the Long Island Breast Cancer Coalition.

A breast cancer survivor herself, Barash endorsed the new plan for mammograms in malls.

If an abnormality is found, patients now have the opportunity for molecular breast imaging (MBI), which is available at Mercy Medical Center.

“It’s brand new and it’s amazing,” said Dr. Conellia Ha. “First one in New York state.”

Richalda Icmat, of Valley Stream, will no longer have to travel out of state for the highly advanced detection tool.

“I’m just so happy and thrilled that I am cancer free right now,” she said.

The American Cancer Society recommends women ages 45 to 54 undergo an annual mammography screening. Women 55 and older may move the screening to every other year.

A woman born in the United States now has a one in eight chance of developing invasive breast cancer during her lifetime.


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