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Cancer Causes Control. 2015 May;26(5):795-803. doi: 10.1007/s10552-015-0560-1. Epub 2015 Mar 27.

Enhancing screening and early detection among women transitioning to Medicare from the NBCCEDP in Georgia.

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Department of Health Policy and Management, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, 1518 Clifton Road NE Room 654, Atlanta, GA, 30322, USA,



The National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program through each state's administration serves millions of low-income and uninsured women aged 40-64. Our purpose was to assess whether cases screened through Georgia's Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP) were diagnosed at an earlier stage of disease and whether those who used the state's program regularly continued to obtain age-appropriate screens as they aged out of BCCP into Medicare between 2000 and 2005.


We used BCCP screening data to identify women with more than one screen and an interval of 18 months or less between screens as "regular" users of BCCP. Using the linked BCCP and Medicare enrollment/claims data, we tested whether women with any BCCP use (n = 3,134) or "regular" users (n = 1,590) were more likely than women not using BCCP (n = 10,086) to exhibit regular screening under Medicare. We used linked BCCP and Georgia Cancer Registry data to examine breast cancer incidence and stage at diagnosis of BCCP women compared to the Georgia population.


Under Medicare, almost 63 % of women with any BCCP use were re-screened versus 51 % of non-BCCP users. The probability of being screened within 18 months of Medicare enrollment was 3.5 % points higher for any BCCP user and 17.7 points higher for "regular" BCCP users, compared to nonusers. Among Black non-Hispanics, the difference for any BCCP user was 13.7 % points and for regular users, 22.4 % points. A larger percentage of BCCP users were diagnosed at in situ or localized disease stage than overall.


The majority of women aging out of the GA BCCP 2000-2005 had used the program to obtain regular mammography. Regular users of GA BCCP continued to be screened within appropriate intervals once enrolled in Medicare due perhaps to educational and support components of BCCP.

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